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For SEO-Minded Hummingbirds
Has your content strategy changed now that we are in a post-Hummingbird world? If you’re tasked with generating online content, you’ve probably seen huge shifts in the last several years. With algorithm changes like Panda and Penguin, websites that focused on quality content to engage their audience have been rewarded. Now with Hummingbird — Google’s algorithm is focused on search intent — we are seeing more shifts in content strategy.
1. How-To Content Wins
At the top of your content strategy should be to directly answer questions. Google processes over 5 billion searches a day. Human searchers are asking questions. Search phrases like “how do I…” clearly indicates the need for useful and quality content. With Hummingbird, the algorithm was modified to better determine search intent. Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) are now showing synonyms in addition to exact keyword phrase matches. If your website content is written to help your audience answer a question, excellent. Keep up the good work. If not, rethink your content strategy as you’re missing the point. If your web pages or blog posts are keyword stuffed, your SEO rankings are at risk.
2. Mobile Search Behavior Feeds Content Strategy
According to the Content Marketing Institute, 46 percent of searchers are using mobile exclusively to research. As a result, your content strategy should address the mobile-friendliness of your website.
Search behavior is rapidly changing. Consumers are searching across multiple devices. For example, research may start on a desktop or laptop for a product — like a new LED TV. They may use sites like CNET, Consumer Reports and Amazon to look at product specifications and reviews. Once they settle on a specific make/model, they may use a tablet to look at pricing. If they are on the go, they may use their smartphone to check a retail store’s inventory and ask for driving directions. The research for one purchase can jump between many devices by the same user.
With Siri and Google Now, a search query can start via voice command versus typing in a search query. Understanding how your content is viewed and consumed (see your Google Analytics reports) should feed your content strategy. Not convinced, check out these mobile search study stats.
Now that you’ve got high-quality content, make it easy for your audience to share it (social media icons/links). Search ranking also takes into consideration social signals — how often your content is shared via social media channels — impacts organic SEO.
When your content is shared, it builds brand reputation and awareness. Links — also known as backlinks — are like votes of confidence. These links are a major factor for search engines to determine your authority and how well and often your website appears on a SERP.
Authorship — linking content to a specific author — changes how snippets show up in a SERP (as well as click-through rates). For large websites with aggressive publishing schedules, your content strategy needs to take into account who gets credit for what. Google+ may be in its infancy with low adoption rates, but its impact to social search is beginning to build. Authorship also has HR implications… as content is attributed to individuals and can follow them after they severe an employment relationship.
What other insights you would add to my list when building a content strategy?
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