Why Content Is the Backbone of Any Successful SEO Campaign

You can have content without SEO, but you cannot have SEO without content. A solid content marketing strategy is the backbone of any optimization strategy, as without content, you have nothing to attach your SEO efforts to. That being said, if you want to gain traction in the search engines, achieve optimal visibility and realize the full benefits of your optimization efforts, you need to commit to creating consistently high-quality and engaging content. Below are the top five reasons why.

1. Google Needs Content to Rank

This is possibly the most straightforward answer we can give you as to your question of why your SEO strategy needs content: Without content, Google has nothing to rank. Google is not picky about the type of content it’s willing to rank — it will rank images, videos, GIFs and even memes. It’s favorite type of content to rank, however, is written text. What Google will not rank, though, are a bunch of random key phrases, Alt text, standalone meta descriptions or other fragments of an SEO strategy. So, if you want to rank (which you do, as that is the ultimate goal of SEO), then you need content.

2. Search Relies on the Strategic Use of Keywords and Phrases

It’s true that the search engine algorithms have advanced to the point where they can ascertain true value by assessing organic factors such as time on page, the number of inbound links, likes and shares. However, the search engines still rely heavily on keywords and phrases to determine a page’s relevancy for ranking purposes.

It’s not enough anymore to use one or two primary keywords or phrases in the title of your content and sprinkled throughout. To create context around your selected keywords and phrases, Google, Yelp, and the other engines need to see secondary and tertiary keywords as well, and even alternatives to your primary terms and phrases. The only way to naturally satisfy Google’s desires is to produce quality, well-written content for the purposes of providing value to your readers. Without taking this step, you will find it very difficult to rank.

3. Backlinks Necessitate Content

You can’t gain backlinks without content, period. Scratch that — you cannot obtain backlinks for free without content. Sure, you can pay other websites and bloggers to throw you a link, but if they oblige, and if visitors don’t find what they’re looking for after clicking on your link, both you and the linking site will be subject to strict penalties.

Whether you pay for backlinks or plan to garner them organically, you need content to which other websites can link. If your content provides enough value, readers and possibly industry influencers will link back to it simply because they appreciate what you’re publishing. This helps your SEO, as Google views backlinks as social proof that your content holds value. And if you plan to pay for links, you still need content because, well, see above regarding penalties.

4. Social Validation Necessitates Content

Social validation is just one of many factors Google considers when ranking websites and pages, and it’s a big one. Social validation can come in many forms, including backlinks, comments, social shares, mentions and time-on-page. Like with backlinks, you can always pay for social validation, but it will only be a matter of time before the search bots find out and penalize you. To garner true social validation, you need content with which your audience can — and wants to — engage.  

5. Content Helps You Satisfy the “Search Task Accomplishment” Factor

The primary purpose of the search engines is to satisfy user intent. If a result fails in doing this, Google has failed … And when Google fails, it penalizes the responsible party.

To avoid falling victim to Google’s wrath, create valuable content with an honest purpose, which is to engage, inform and solve searchers’ dilemmas. If your content does this, it will rank. If your website does not have content, or if you create content strictly for SEO purposes, your rankings will deteriorate.

Additional SEO Value of Content

High-quality content has countless SEO benefits. In addition to the above five benefits, content can help you do the following:

  • Attract new leads
  • Create opportunities for social shares and expand your reach
  • Give visitors more reason to stay on your site for longer
  • Boost your rankings organically; organic rankings last far longer than those promoted via advertising

In the early days of the internet, SEO existed in isolation. Today, that is no longer the case, and it hasn’t been for decades. Search engine optimization needs content to attach itself to, end of story. If you don’t have content, you have nothing to optimize and, therefore, nothing worth ranking. Invest in content that rank. Talk to our team about content marketing strategies today.