Develop the skills necessary to assist your colleagues in comprehending the “helpful” content update, its significance, and its effects on the SEO sector.
Nicole submits the following query for this week’s Ask an SEO:
“How do you think the language Google is using around this (Helpful Content) update will affect the SEO industry and how SEO is perceived in the marketing field?”
Regards, Nicole. fascinating query.
Comprehending The “Informative Content Update”
As SEO experts, we must keep in mind that the majority of consumers are uninterested in and probably won’t read what Google says. Other departments, C-level executives, and other marketers fall under this category.
Although we are aware that the helpful content update aims to ensure that the content provides a solution and eliminates unnecessary information, we are the only ones who are concerned about Google’s standards.
It is our responsibility to explain what “helpful” content is and why it matters, and to point them to Google’s documentation when they inquire about additional sources of validation.
However, it’s likely that they won’t read as thoroughly as you or I and will instead scan through.
Pro tip: I support my points with non-SEO technologies.
Employing Non-SEO Tools to Support Your Argument
For displaying income gains and losses as well as an increase in clicks through to a conversion funnel, Mouseflow and Hotjar are excellent tools.
Through the process of optimizing a page for search engine optimization, you can demonstrate how eliminating superfluous graphics and wording improves user experience and generates income for the business.
You present your case from their perspective rather than the SEO one by utilizing resources that the other teams are accustomed to using. It makes a big difference.
Finding a Balance Between SEO and Branding
Since being direct is “off-brand,” branding will still want to convey the page’s message, which may lead to less precise writing.
Rather than being beneficial to Google and an SEO expert, a branding expert is likely to see the branding phrases as “helpful” to the consumer. Wording that is “on brand” but that a customer hasn’t heard of may also be used in the telling of the story.
That is also perfectly acceptable. Being prepared is what it means to be an SEO expert.
Pro tip: Designate which pages are intended for ranking and which are not. A sitewide classifier is a useful content update, but don’t think too much about it.
Allow branding to brand it, and let the homepage appear for your branded phrases, which it will.
You might be able to optimize the categories, services, and items for both SEO and users by doing this. To strengthen your argument for the primary site, you can also permit PPC to use direct language in their advertising rather than branding terminology.
Surmounting Sales And Advertising Teams’ Tasks
We have other challenges besides branding when it comes to useful content updating.
Because they believe that a call with the individual is helpful, sales may need to make a strong call to action or sales pitch in the first paragraph or two. Additionally, it’s so they may obtain a response (and a lead).
As SEO specialists, we are aware that the page should address the visitor’s question first, followed by a call to action and sales pitch.
We can warm up a cold lead and boost the sales team’s conversions by responding to the user’s inquiry first and demonstrating our value as a solution.
Additionally, as SEO experts, we must word it so that the sales team understands it.
The advertising teams come next. They’ll probably want cost per thousand (CPM) and affiliate ads up and center if your website earns money from advertising or affiliate marketing, even if it obscures the content and solutions.
Utilizing Unaffiliated SEO Tools
Pro-tip: Utilize third-party SEO tools like Ahrefs, Moz, and Semrush to demonstrate traffic declines from rival websites, rather than waiting for Google to penalize the site so you can present your case.
Combine the drops with Way Back Machine screenshots to illustrate the events leading up to the drop. You can demonstrate how the website experience altered for those who made a full recovery.
The Wider View: Google’s Comprehensive Assessment
Speaking languages with other people is now the enjoyable part.
The majority of non-experts in SEO will view SEO material as just a list of keywords jammed into headings, titles, and body paragraphs.
Additionally, some believe you must meet a word count or length requirement. Both are untrue, and the helpful content recommendations won’t influence their decision because they won’t read the text surrounding them.
It is your responsibility to inform them and let them know that the beneficial content update encompasses the entire website experience rather than simply content.
The fact that Google is now examining your website as a whole rather of just individual pages is one of the largest changes brought about by the helpful content update.
Content Separation: Corporate vs. Customer
When PR uploads corporate updates on the blog and HR writes press releases, it presents a challenge for me to do SEO audits.
The product team occasionally releases weekly updates as well. While some of the information may be “helpful,” the majority is not.
Under this scenario, the content that was once deemed “helpful” has become secondary, as it is overshadowed by items that may not hold significance for prospective clients.
Your ability to acquire customers is negatively impacted because the blog is less “helpful.” It is not necessary for someone who has not used your services or made any purchases from you to be aware of the most recent features or bug patches. They will discover those in your sales funnel and on the pages dedicated to your goods or services.
They also don’t give a damn if you pulled off a team BBQ at the corporate picnic or if someone got promoted. To the HR team alone, that matters.
The majority of the blog’s content needs to be educational for returning visitors and engaging enough for new ones to encourage them to click through and read more in order for it to be useful.
We establish two distinct content sections in the aforementioned scenario.
One can be found internally in your interface, for current customers to receive updates. Additionally, you may place it in a blog folder that you have blocked from being crawled by robots.txt. This is also a wonderful place to archive.
In case of an order, I separate it and create a business blog where people may share their stories with their teams and the organization as a whole, as well as discuss announcements and events.
To ensure that the corporate blog doesn’t affect the client site, we might even put up a different URL. In this manner, it makes clear to the teams who are the target audience without detracting from the valuable content on the conversion page.
The Litmus Test for “Helpful Content”
To help other team members understand “helpful” content, I like to use a litmus test similar to the preceding pro tip.
When I meet with the client face-to-face, we compare the versions they made and mine to see what comments come back from them. Go to a coffee shop or approach people who seem to fit your target demographic and ask them to take in one or both of the pieces.
It is fair since the objective is to receive an equal number of responses. It is more crucial that you pose the appropriate queries.
Here’s one instance.
Separate the title tag from the text and the first paragraph or two of the content. Both the SEO piece (make it B) and the non-SEO piece (make it A) are done in this way.
Ask the stranger who read item A what the title should be after they finish each paragraph. If it aligns with the page’s objective, it was beneficial and sufficiently topically relevant to pass.
It is not topically relevant stuff if they hesitate or are unsure. Furthermore, this test is reversible.
Ask the person what they will learn if they visit the webpage after stating the first title (the non-SEO one). Should they be in the dark, the title fails to entice them to click through.
Position 2 in the SERPs speaks directly to your position 1 listing, therefore part of your traffic will probably go to the next site below.
Ask the person which version they felt was more beneficial to them and which will assist them discover a solution if you share both with them at the same time.
Because we provide answers without the filler and pitches, it turns out that SEO content often wins out. We also examine the language, tone, and vocabulary used by our target consumers as part of our entity study.
We are able to communicate with them on their level of content absorption in this way. And for that reason, our material is more “helpful.” Providing you do not use keyword stuffing.
Changing Perceptions About “Helpful” Content:
If other people read Google’s guidelines, the helpful content update’s wording should have a positive effect on both SEO and the overall customer and user experience of your website. However, since non-SEO professionals are preoccupied with their teams, channels, and departments, they won’t read it, so the new wording and guidelines won’t alter their ideas of what constitutes “helpful” content. It is your responsibility as an SEO professional to do this, and you can use this guide as the rationale for changing things. I hope this clarifies the question, and thank you for asking.