Page two of Google is no man’s land.
It’s like you bought a ticket to Fiji and ended up at your hometown beach or lake. Unless your hometown is Fiji…this wasn’t the plan.
In no man’s land, you’re not getting traffic. You’re not getting conversions. And you’re not feeling good about it.
If putting your money into an SEO strategy feels equivalent to setting it on fire, we’re here to help you. With the rise in online content consumption, SEO needs to be making you money.
Not taking away from your profits.
Here are 5 reasons your current SEO strategy is failing.
#1: You’re Not Using Content Clusters
The content cluster strategy has become extremely popular over the years. Aja Frost, Head of Content at Hubspot, workshopped the strategy for DigitalMarketer Lab members showing how content clusters helped Hubspot rank for more keywords.
Without content clusters, your SEO strategy might fall flat. These clusters bundle content together based on a particular topic. For example, this article is part of a content cluster for the topic SEO. We have a pillar post accompanying 1,000-1,500 word articles that all link to that main post.
The goal is for these posts to drive viewers to our pillar post, which will then have lots of CTAs for our offer. This strategy helps you rank for more keywords (because you have more content for each keyword) while showing search engines that your website visitors love your stuff. When you read the entirety of this article, click on our pillar post and read all the way through that…search engines realize you really like our stuff.
That helps us rank for these keywords and boosts our posts in the rankings.
Try writing pillar posts with supporting “smaller” articles on the same topic that all link to that pillar post. Your keyword ranking should increase and you should see your articles creep up to Page 1 (fingers crossed!).
#2: You’re Not Investing in Your Content
People used to get away with a lot when it came to content. They could post subpar articles and find their way to the top of Page 1. But now that’s getting harder. And we like it! Bad content shouldn’t be ranking because it’s not giving search engine users a good experience. Search engines only have one goal…find the answer to someone’s question. Bad content doesn’t answer that question and leaves the reader looking for more.
That’s where high bounce rates come in and the search engines deem your content as “unworthy” of Page 1.
5 million WordPress blogs were posted *every day* in Q1 of 2021. If you think you can get away with subpar content—and then wonder why your SEO strategy is failing—it’s time to do some reflecting.
You’ll get what you put into your SEO strategy.
Invest in your content so that people keep reading it. When they keep reading, it tells the search engines that other people (with the same search query) would like to read this too.
#3: You’re Using a Generalized CTA
If you’re getting traffic, but you’re not getting conversions from your SEO strategy—we can fix it. The good news is you’re doing a great job of ranking for your keywords. You’ve come really far and the rest is a (semi) easy fix.
What we need to do is take a look at your call-to-action:
- Is it too general vs. specific to the question that led them to this article?
- Is it asking people to buy a product unrelated to the article they’re reading?
- Have you tested different offers?
Start to test your CTAs to figure out what’s going wrong with them. Use Harry Dry’s strategy of call-to-values in place of call-to-actions to make sure you’re focused on the reader (not your personal gain from the conversion):
#4: You Can’t See the Results Yet
Kids and SEO strategies are great tests of patience. When it comes to kids, we suggest deep breaths. When it comes to SEO, we suggest weekly meetings and deep breaths. Your SEO strategy might feel expensive while it’s not bringing in an ROI, but you have to remember—this is a long-term strategy.
This isn’t a paid ads strategy that gets turned on and optimized in a few days. SEO takes time. Search engines need to learn what question your content answers and they’ll do that best when a bunch of people have read through it (see below).
If you’re not seeing results within a few weeks of launching your SEO strategy…wait. Don’t pull the parachute and funnel your money into a proven marketing channel. If you’ve wanted to get your SEO off the ground the time to stop IS NOT NOW.
Let your SEO strategy run for at least a few months to make sure it has time to work.
If it really doesn’t work after then, take another look through these 5 reasons your strategy is failing to see what else could be going wrong.
#5: You’re Not Using Your Other Platforms to Get Traction
When you run paid ads for the first time, the platform (ex. Facebook) will suggest that you give them a test period. During these 7 days, they need about $50 so their algorithm can figure out who your audience is. They need to see who:
- Engages with your posts
- Clicks to your profile
- Explores your website
This tells the platform who is the best fit to show this paid ad to. You can think of SEO in a similar way. If you’re able to drive traffic to your articles on your own, you’re helping the algorithm figure out who is the best fit for your search results.
Not only that, but you’re also boosting your articles in search rankings because search engines are noticing that people love your content.
If you have an audience (email list, social media, anything!)—promote your content to them.
This will only help your SEO strategy (and can be done for free most of the time).
Don’t End Up in No Man’s Land
SEO is a tricky part of marketing. It’s the part that isn’t always entirely clear because platforms, like Google, don’t seem to really know how things get ranked. As machine learning and algorithms took over the ranking process, we have to play into their rules to make sure that our content gets prioritized.
And their number one rule is to give their users a great experience. That comes directly from showing them great content.
Guess who’s content that could be?
If your SEO strategy is failing, don’t give up until you’ve:
- Tried the content cluster strategy
- Properly invested in making your content high-quality
- Tested different CTAs (and turned them into CTVs)
- Given it at least a few months to show an ROI
- Promoted your content across your other marketing channels
SEO can change your business. Make sure to give it a fair shot before you call it quits.