Content Marketing: How to Build Authority and Improve SEO at the Same Time

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10 min read

There’s something that far too many people tend to overlook with their SEO content strategy until it’s too late. They think that so long as they cram as many keywords into their service pages as possible, they’ll rank highly, and they’ll have a steady stream of new prospects headed right to their door. From a certain perspective, this is true. The higher you rank, the more traffic your site will enjoy.

Search engine optimisation helps make sure that your business is easily located by someone who is looking. You still have to give them something worth finding, which is a big part of what SEO content marketing is all about.

Think about it like this. If you have what is an objectively terrific SEO campaign, you’re probably going to enjoy more traffic than you know what to do with. But if those visitors arrive at your site and see absolutely nothing of value beyond a brief overview of your products and services, they’re probably going to hit the “Back” button and never return. They’re certainly not going to want to look for more information and the chances of them converting are slim-to-none.

But imagine if they discover a site that is filled with helpful content that answers their questions or addresses concerns that they might have. Slowly but surely, people are going to start to see yours as a voice worth paying attention to – a voice worth trusting.

That’s called authority, and it’s a pivotal part of any SEO campaign that far too many people leave out until it’s too late. Especially when it comes to SEO content marketing, building authority does not have to come at the expense of your other SEO techniques. In fact, it can complement them. Getting to this place in your outreach strategy simply requires a greater understanding of exactly how search engine optimisation works and what sites like Google are looking for, as well as for you to keep a number of essential best practices at the ready.

The Trouble With Keywords: The Major Misconception of SEO

Again, one of the most common myths that people buy into when it comes to SEO is that keywords are somehow the only factor you need to concern yourself with.

Keywords are simply those words or phrases that people would use on their quest to find a product or service like yours. If you’re an electronics retailer in London, it stands to reason that you would want to rank as highly as possible for keywords like “electronics retailer London.”

The thinking goes that the more often a certain keyword appears on your page, the more relevant that content must be to whatever someone is searching for. Therefore, you’ll rise to the top of the search engine results pages and generate more visibility for yourself.

There was a time when Google’s algorithm, in particular, was heavily built around the use of keywords, but those days are long gone. Keywords are still important, to be sure, but they’re just one small part of a much larger story.

Other factors that Google looks at include but are not limited to the following:

  • Content quality – People use Google to find high-quality, high-value, relevant content. Pieces that go in-depth on a particular topic, that are found to be accurate, and that generally offer something of value tend to rank higher than others by design. If someone arrives at your page because you have countless keywords but little else, they’re not going to stay for very long.
  • Backlinks – These are instances where other sites are linking back to your own content for whatever reason. Maybe you made a particularly salient point that someone is referring to in their own writing. Maybe you participated in a research study and they’re using you as a source. Regardless, the thinking is that if your content (and by association, your domain and your brand) didn’t have authority, people wouldn’t be creating backlinks. The more backlinks you have, the more authority you have as a direct result.
  • The user experience – People’s time is precious. They don’t just want to find the answer to their question. They want to find it as quickly and as easily as possible. The better the user experience, the easier it is for them to do that. Not only does this make them more likely to actually read and recommend the content of yours that they’ve found, but it also makes them more likely to see what else is on your domain as well.

The recurring theme throughout all this is that these factors relate, either directly or indirectly, to the overall level of authority you have.

At this point, it’s important to remember how a site like Google operates. Believe it or not, Google still makes the majority of its money on ad revenue—about $65.5 billion in Q4 of 2023 alone

If people start only getting low-quality, irrelevant, low-authority results when they search for important terms, they’ll stop using Google. That means Google’s ad revenue (and thus overall ability to make money) will drop significantly. Google (and its shareholders) do not want this to happen, which is why they prioritise authoritative content above almost all else.

Authority as It Relates to Your SEO Content Strategy

Content Marketing: How to Build Authority and Improve SEO at the Same Time 1

If you asked the average person to list some qualities that separate an authoritative piece of content from one that isn’t worth their time, they’d probably list a few basic things. They’d say that something needs to be trustworthy and credible. In other words, can they believe the claims behind whatever it is that they’re reading?

This is part of the reason why looking at SEO content marketing as strictly another avenue for generic advertising is a major mistake in the modern era. People aren’t just going to believe you out of the kindness of their hearts when you talk about how great your products and services are. They want to know, beyond the shadow of a doubt. That means creating as much authoritative content as you can.

But what those people are really looking for is content that has a few core traits, including ones like:

  • Content that was created by a legitimate expert in their field – If you’re running a healthcare organisation, people will trust what you have to say about healthcare-related topics. They might not be as forgiving if you start writing about finance or political subjects, because that isn’t where your inherent expertise rests.
  • They want content that is accurate – This is why it is important to back up absolutely everything you say with credible sources, regardless of how much extra effort it requires. Don’t just throw out a statistic. Show where you go it. Even if what you’re offering is your opinion, show that you arrived at that opinion in some logical way.
  • They want relevant content – Again – if you follow a few basic SEO tips like leaning into certain keyword densities, you can rank highly fairly quickly. But if you do that and ultimately offer content that isn’t relevant at all to the original search intent, this is going to reflect negatively on the entire authority of your business at the same time.
  • They want original content – Don’t just regurgitate that which you read elsewhere. Don’t copy and paste something and try to pass it off as your own. Dive deep into the topics that you’re covering from your own unique slant.

There’s a reason why, according to another study, blogs with more than 400 posts receive twice the amount of traffic than those with even 301 to 300 posts. The more high-quality content you create, the more of an opportunity you have to show what an authority you are to your audience. Those people ingest more of your content, which increases your search rankings. That makes totally new prospects more likely to find you, which starts the entire cycle all over again.

That’s how you build authority and improve your SEO at the same time. If you focus on the actual authority component, certain aspects of search engine optimisation should take care of themselves before you know it. That is not the ONLY thing you have to focus on when it comes to SEO, but it’s certainly one of the biggest, and it’s one that you do not want to neglect.

Tips for SEO Content Based on Content Types

For the best results, you’ll want to tailor your SEO efforts based on the type of content that you’re putting out into the world. Each content format type has its own unique strengths and by playing to those strengths, you can build authority and make sure that your audience members wind up with something valuable and relevant every single time.

Case in point: product pages. In addition to detailed product descriptions that include key features, benefits, specifications, and anything else that is unique to your business, you’ll also want to make sure that product titles are optimized. High-quality images and videos should be included wherever possible, and you should always lean into user reviews whenever you can. User reviews in particular are a great way to continue to build authority through social proof. 

The same concept holds true of service pages, albeit from a slightly different perspective. Here, you’ll want to create individual pages for each service that you offer, making sure to optimise them with all the relevant keywords and informative content that people are looking for when they search in the first place. This is called search intent and it is a very important quality to pay attention to.

Other ways to build authority while improving your SEO content strategy at the same time include the use of case studies and testimonials. You’ll also want to include frequently asked questions sections – again, to help make sure that your content is more than just a straightforward selling tool. 

You can really make an impact in terms of authority by offering supplementary resources that go beyond your straightforward products and services. Develop in-depth resources like ebooks, white papers, and more to thoroughly cover all the topics that matter most to your target audience. Whenever possible, offer free tools or resources that dive deep into a lot of the common questions or pain points that people who are looking for a product or service like yours might have. Never overlook an opportunity to offer something of value to your audience members without explicitly asking for something in return.

Throughout this time, pay attention to long-tail keywords and optimise all the content accordingly.

In terms of any guides that you might offer, be sure to include clear and detailed step-by-step instructions to help guide your audience members through a specific process or task. Always include visual aids like images or videos whenever possible, as again most of the people you’re going to be speaking to are visual learners.

These are just a few of the ways that you can create high-quality, SEO optimised content for your audience. The more you do that, the more authority you will ultimately build in their eyes. 

Partner With a Comprehensive SEO Strategy Provider

If all this sounds complicated, that’s largely because it is. It takes a tremendous amount of time and effort to get it right. Since you likely already have one of those monopolising much of your time, that’s why it’s always recommended to enlist the help of a team of professionals who can take care of many of those things on your behalf.

A comprehensive SEO content strategy partner can help empower not only your lead generation efforts, but can outline a path towards more sustainable growth as well. They do this through SEO content marketing planning, structure, and a clear thought process that creates a repeatable framework you can use to build authority with your audience and get the right message in front of the right person again and again.

These types of content marketing and SEO services can help you with tasks like:

  • SEO keyword research – A team of partners can dedicate the time needed to analysing all relevant keywords for your business and your industry. They’ll even be able to take a look at what your competitors are doing to see what gaps can be taken advantage of moving forward. 
  • SEO content strategy development – After developing an initial SEO content strategy built with your brand in mind, a team can sit down and come up with a plan to be executed between one and six months in advance. That will help make sure that things go as smoothly as possible. Everything can also be adjusted based on any changes that happen, either with your business or your industry, as things go on.
  • Social content optimisation – Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter/X, and others are a big part of any SEO content strategy in the modern era. But at the same time, you can’t just take one message and expect it to work equally well on all platforms. Things need to be adjusted based on the strengths of each platform. 

But more than anything, content marketing with SEO partners free up your valuable time so that you can focus more on tasks that actually need your attention. That way, they can build authority via content marketing and SEO, and you’re free to build authority in the products and services you offer to your audience members, along with the interactions you have with them.

In the End: Effective SEO and Content Marketing Creates Authority

It doesn’t matter what type of product or service people are looking for – they don’t want to spend their hard-earned money until they’re completely confident they’re doing so in the right way. This means that they’re paying more attention to the brands they do business with than ever.

They’re not just going to take your word for it that you can live up to the promises they’re making. They want to deal with brands that are trustworthy – something that is the cornerstone of any relationship. They want to know that you’re credible, meaning that they can believe what you say.

They also want you to engage with them. These days, competition is nothing if not fierce. Thanks to the Internet and the kinds of resources available, even the smallest businesses can have a global presence if they really want it. Because of that, you need to do anything you can to stand out in a crowd and going out of your way to turn the audience experience from something passive into an active one is a great way to do it.

Trustworthiness. Credibility. Engagement. When you add these things up, you get “authority” – something that both audiences and engines like Google put a tremendous price on.

That’s why this is always something you should focus on when building out your larger SEO content marketing strategy. It’s not just about getting certain keywords into the text a specific number of times. When you go to the type of effort needed to create high-value, relevant content, your standing improves both in the eyes of your site visitors and with Google at the same time.

The most immediate benefit of this is that it creates a legitimate competitive advantage for yourself in the marketplace. Yours becomes the voice that everyone else is judged against. But you also start to build legitimate relationships with your audience members, which is a major contributing factor to them making a purchase and then continuing to come back for more. That in and of itself is the most important benefit of all.

The more you work to become a trusted voice amongst your audience members, the more authoritative you become in the eyes of Google. This improves your search visibility, which leads to more traffic, which leads to more people discovering your authoritative voice. Soon, it all starts to build upon itself, generating its own momentum – which is a very exciting position to be in, regardless of the industry that you’re operating in. 

If you’re interested in finding out more information about how to build authority through SEO content marketing and improve your larger SEO efforts at the same time, or if you’re eager to discuss your own digital marketing needs with a team of professionals in a bit more detail, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.

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Gideon has over a decade of experience in internet marketing, working with globally recognised brands as well as small local business. With his knowledge of both worlds, it brings a competitive edge to the table, ensuring even the smallest business is taken care of like it was his own. Gideon's technical background ensures that each and every campaign has a strong foundation and key elements are in place for the success of whatever the goals are.
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