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13 Tips to Create Great Content That Ranks



Over the past few years, we’ve grown the Ahrefs blog from ~5,000 to ~317,000 monthly search visits.

Ahrefs blog traffic, via Google Search Console

How did we do it?

Essentially, we’ve found a content creation method that blends good SEO fundamentals with sound copywriting principles. So not only does our content rank high on Google, but it also encourages our readers to read, link to, share and, later on, purchase our product. 

Of course, we cannot solely attribute the traffic growth to our process. But we think it’s a part of the explanation. 

In this post, I’ll share the SEO copywriting tips we’ve implemented in our content writing process.

But first, let’s define exactly what SEO copywriting is.

SEO copywriting is the process of writing content for search engines and users. It’s where you craft content to rank on Google that searchers want to read, link to, and share. 

After all, content that gets tons of traffic from Google but never gets read is useless. The same goes for content that is incredibly compelling but never gets any traffic. 

Now that we’ve understood what SEO copywriting is, let’s get into the actionable tips that you can implement. 

At 388,000 monthly searches in the U.S., the term “basketball shoes” looks like a good keyword to write a blog post about—if you own a basketball blog.

Search volume for the keyword, "basketball shoes"

But you’d be mistaken. 

If we look at the SERPs for “basketball shoes,” we’ll see the results are mostly e-commerce category pages from online retailers:

SERP for "basketball shoes"

Google understands that searchers are in buying mode, not learning mode. So it ranks category pages over blog posts. 

And this is the first tip: create the right kind of content for the keyword you’re targeting. Fail to do that, and ranking will be an uphill battle. 

In the SEO world, this concept is known as search intent, i.e., the why behind a search query. To analyze search intent, we can simply look at the top-ranking pages to figure out the three Cs of search intent. 

Content type

What type of content is Google mostly ranking? Typically, the types are blog posts, product pages, category pages, landing pages, or videos. 

For example, the search results for “wireless headphones” are all e-commerce category pages. And for “best wireless headphones,” they’re mostly blog posts.

SERP for "wireless headphones"
SERP for “wireless headphones.”
SERP for "best wireless headphones"
SERP for “best wireless headphones.”

Content format

Content format applies mostly to informational content. Example formats include how-tos, listicles, news articles, opinion pieces, and reviews.

For example, when you Google “date ideas,” you’ll see that they’re all lists:

SERP for "date ideas"

Content angle

This is the main selling point of the content. Typically, you’ll be able to see a dominant angle on the SERPs. 

For example, the top results for “how to make egg fried rice” want the process to be easy:

SERP for "how to make egg fried rice"

Recommended reading: What Is Search Intent? A Complete Guide for Beginners 

2. Cover the topic in full

Google wants to rank the most relevant, useful result on the first page. So your post should show that it deserves a place there.

How do you do this?

By covering all the things searchers want to know and expect to see.

Search intent is one aspect of this process. But analyzing the three Cs only gives you a high-level overview of the intent. To better understand what your content should cover, you need to dig deeper by further analyzing relevant top-ranking pages, i.e., pages that are similar to what you’re going to create. 

For example, if you’re creating a listicle about the best wireless headphones, then you shouldn’t take reference from e-commerce category pages or landing pages. 

With that said, let’s look at how to fully cover a topic. 

Look for common subheadings

Subheadings offer quick insights into what searchers are looking for, especially if there are the same or similar ones across the top-ranking pages.

For example, if you look at the top results for “best wireless earbuds,” you’ll see that—as expected—they all mention Apple’s AirPods Pro.

Mention of AirPods Pro
Mention of AirPods Pro
Mention of AirPods Pro

That probably means the AirPods should be on your shortlist for consideration. Other products that should be on your shortlist include these:

  • Sony WF-1000XM4
  • Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
  • One of the Jabra Elites (3, 75t, 85t)

A quick way to view all the subheadings in a post is to install Ahrefs’ SEO Toolbar and use the free content report:

Content report, via Ahrefs' SEO Toolbar

Of course, if you disagree vehemently with any of the picks in the top-ranking pages, don’t include them. Treat this as inspiration—you should, at the very least, check out and test these products and see if they’re worthy of inclusion. 

Look for subtopics among keyword rankings

A page doesn’t just rank for the main keyword; it also ranks for other keywords that fall under the main topic (i.e., subtopics).

If we can find out what these subtopics are, we can also cover them on our page. Here’s how to find them:

  1. Paste a few top-ranking URLs for your main topic into Ahrefs’ Content Gap tool
  2. Leave the bottom section blank
  3. Hit Show keywords
  4. Set the Intersection filter to 3 and 4 targets
Content Gap analysis, via Ahrefs' Site Explorer

We can see that these pages also rank for subtopics like these:

  • Best wireless earbuds for android
  • Best earbuds for iphone
  • Best earbuds for phone calls
  • Most comfortable earbuds
  • Wireless earbuds with longest battery life

These are good subtopics to cover for the article you’re creating. 

Look at People Also Ask boxes

If you search for something in Google, you’ll see a SERP feature known as a People Also Ask (PAA) box:

People Also Ask box for "best wireless earbuds"

These questions offer insights into other things searchers may want to know. For example, you may want to consider adding a section in your article about why it is/isn’t worth it to buy true wireless earbuds. 

You can use tools like AlsoAsked to pull all the PAA questions related to the keyword you’re targeting:

Results from AlsoAsked

Look at the pages manually

Finally, nothing beats simply analyzing each page manually. Click the top-ranking pages on the SERPs and go through each one by one. You’ll learn a lot that way. 

3. Add “link triggers”

Google says links are one of its top three ranking factors. Our own study of 1 billion pages also found a strong, positive correlation between the number of websites linking to a page and how much search traffic it gets from Google:

Chart showing correlation between search traffic and referring domains

So you’ll want your content to be able to earn links. We can do this by understanding why people are linking to the pages you wish to beat—and then apply those insights to your post.

We call these “link triggers.”

Let’s take the keyword “seo copywriting” as an example. If we look at the SERPs for the topic, we see competing pages with tons of backlinks:

SERP overview for "seo copywriting"

But why are so many people linking to these pages anyway?

To find out, let’s take one of these URLs, paste it into Ahrefs’ Site Explorer, and check the Anchors report. This shows the most common words people use when linking to the page.

Here, we can see that lots of people are linking to this post because of two concepts it introduces: “bucket brigades” and the “APP method.”

Anchors report for Backlinko's SEO copywriting post, via Ahrefs' Site Explorer

The goal isn’t to simply copy-paste these ideas into your post. It’s to analyze why. So in this example, Brian is the first person to introduce these copywriting ideas to the SEO niche. 

Therefore, to apply this insight to our own post, we’ll have to share unique tips of our own too. (Which is what we’ve done!) If you see that people are linking to a page because of a unique statistic, then you may want to consider running a study or doing a survey.

4. Make reading easy with the ASMR formula

Reading is a transaction. Your readers are basically trading their time for your words. If there’s any point where they feel like the content is too burdensome to read, they’ll hit the “back” button.

So make sure your content is designed and written in a way that’s comfortable for reading. Do this by following the ASMR formula:

  • Annotations – Adding notes, sidenotes, and other elements like blockquotes and call-out boxes helps break up the monotony of the post.
  • Short sentences and paragraphs – Long sentences are hard to follow. Find instances where you used transitional words like “and,” “because,” and “that.” Break them up into shorter statements.
  • Multimedia like videos, images, and GIFs – Including these can help illustrate your points without having to add extra words.
  • Read your copy out loud – Doing so lets you pinpoint areas where your content doesn’t flow smoothly.

5. Speak your audience’s language

The main goal of copywriting is to persuade. But nothing can be more unpersuasive than reading something that’s obviously written by someone who’s an “outsider.” 

For example, dancers dislike the term “breakdance” and “breakdancers.” It’s even classified as an insult in the community. The proper term is “breaking” or “b-boying”/“b-girling.” 

If you’re not using those terms, it’ll be apparent to the reader you’re not in tune with the niche—which will turn them off.

Most people think copywriting is about writing, but nothing can be further from the truth. The core of the copywriting process is deep research. 

If you’re unfamiliar with the jargon, terms, pains, problems, desires, and wants of your audience, then you’ll have to find out. Browse the communities where your target audience hangs out.  These can be places like:

  • Facebook groups
  • Reddit
  • Slack communities
  • Quora
  • Blogs
  • Forums

For example, if I were to start a b-boying blog, I’d head over to r/bboy. With just a couple of minutes of scrolling, I’d learn new terms like invert, cypher, power moves, air tracks, windmills, and more. 

Post on r/bboy

6. Write like how you talk

There’s something about business that makes people all stiff, uptight, and overly formal. People may overlook it at an event, but they won’t overlook it in your copy. 

After all, nothing screams “stop reading now” more than a piece of content written like an academic report filled with meaningless jargon. 

Don’t make this mistake. Good web copy is casual. It’s like you conversing with a friend—except that your “friend” is a reader on the internet. 

If you’re worried that your copy sounds too business-like, you can paste it into Hemingway: 

Hemingway App

It’ll keep your content simple, clear, and casual. 

7. Give your content a unique spin

It’s important to match search intent. It’s also important to cover the topic in full—at least as much as possible. But don’t mistake this as a call to create copycat content. 

You still have to give your content a unique spin. 

Why? A few reasons:

  1. If your content is like everyone else’s, then the reader has no reason to read yours over the others. They can easily choose another and be done with it.
  2. We’ve established that links are important. But people usually link because of something unique and original. If your article is the same as others, then there’s no reason to link to it. 
  3. If your content doesn’t stand out on the SERPs, the searcher has no reason to click it either. 

You get the point. 

SEO copywriting is a balance between giving searchers what they want and saying something unique and original. This can be in the form of a unique angle, unique tips that only you know, unique resources like checklists and templates, or something from your personal experience. 

That’s what we tried to do in this post. We’ve given both tips based on our experience and tips not seen anywhere else (e.g., ASMR formula, link triggers).

How do you create something unique? Here are a few tips:

  1. Actually experience something – There’s no substitute for personal experience. If you want to write about intermittent fasting, actually fast then write about it. See our post about email outreach
  2. Talk to experts – Sometimes, it’s impossible to actually do or experience something. But someone else probably has. Talk to them and get their advice and perspective. We did that with our post on Google penalties.
  3. Analyze data Do research and study something—get actual numbers behind popular claims in your niche. Check out our Google Search Console study.
  4. Crowdsource – Get the opinions of multiple experts, like what we did with our post on SEO managers
  5. Consider the opposite – Is the opposite side always false? What if it was true? Think about it and, if possible, find evidence to justify your position. 

8. Use the “inverted pyramid” method

Most pages seem to bury important information.

For example, take a look at this list of the best non-stick pans:

Introduction in a post about best non-stick pans

There are 241 words of “nice to know” background information before the post gets to what everyone came for: the answer to the question.

Compare that to Wirecutter’s post about the same thing:

Wirecutter's introduction in its post on the best non-stick pans

This time, the answer is right there in the first paragraph.

For the impatient reader, this is perfect. They get what they want right away. For the rest who prefer context or more details, there’s plenty more to read.

This format is known as the inverted pyramid. It’s a journalism technique where you give people the essential information before the non-essential.

Introduction in Tim Ferriss' post

From an SEO perspective, giving readers the information they’re looking for without them having to work for it may help to reduce pogo-sticking—bouncing back and forth between pages on the SERPs—and improve dwell time.

Applying this idea is simple. In your introduction, answer the main question you’re targeting. For example, our post on what SERPs are goes directly into the definition of a SERP:

Ahrefs blog post on "what are SERPs"

Then in the rest of the article, you can fill in the details while also answering related questions.

9. Use a table of contents

Consciously or not, the reader is always checking if your content fulfills what they’re looking for.  If it says it has the answer to their question, then they’ll keep an eye out to see if it’s true. If it’s not, they’ll leave. 

This is why you should add a table of contents.

Example of a table of contents

This allows your readers to immediately understand if your post is likely to answer the question they have. If it does, they can easily navigate to that section.

Once they’ve started reading, they may be sucked into your copy and start reading the rest naturally.

An additional benefit of a table of contents is that it creates sitelinks on the page, which Google sometimes shows on the SERPs:

An example of sitelinks

This can potentially lead to more clicks.

A quality introduction keeps the reader sliding down your page’s “slippery slope,” whereas a poor intro sends them back to the SERPs. 

If you want a simple way to write a kick-ass intro, consider using the Problem-Agitate-Solve (PAS) formula. 

The PAS formula

Here’s what it looks like in the wild:

An example of the PAS formula in action

At this point, you may have a question. We now have both the inverted pyramid and the PAS formula as potential intros. Which one should you use? 

The answer lies in the topic you’re targeting. 

If there’s a direct answer—“What are SERPs?” — then use the inverted pyramid. If the topic is targeting a problem or pain point—“How to build links”—then you can consider using the PAS formula. 

11. Don’t sleep on title tags

Your title tag is the headline of your article. It determines whether your content gets clicked on the SERPs. Don’t neglect them. 

A good exercise to practice is to write out at least 10 different variations of your title tag before deciding on one. That’s what the best writers do: For an extreme example, bestselling author James Clear even went the extra mile and brainstormed 400 titles for his book:

You don’t have to do 400—around 10 will do. Beyond that, here are three tips to improve your title tags:

  1. Use “power words” – Power words like “remarkable,” “captivating,” and “noteworthy” are words that trigger a positive or negative emotional response. Sprinkling one or two of these into your title tags can make them more compelling, e.g., 7 Benefits of Running -> 7 Life-changing Benefits of Running.
  2. Add parentheses – Parentheses strengthen your title tag by adding “icing on the cake.” Here’s an example: 7 Benefits of Running (Backed by Science)
  3. Include the year in your title – Some queries want fresh results. For example, if you’re targeting a keyword like “best wireless earbuds,” searchers will want to see results that are updated this year. To communicate freshness, add the current year in your title. 

Recommended reading: How to Craft the Perfect SEO Title Tag (Our 4-Step Process)

12. Add “open loops”

Why did the scene cut away? Is Oh Ill-nam dead? What happened?” you think to yourself, sobbing. The next thing you know, it’s 5 a.m. and you’ve just binge-watched the entire “Squid Game” series. 

For years now, TV producers and script writers have used a method to get you hooked on their shows. This technique is known as “open loops.”

Essentially, they’ll set up a plot element in an earlier episode to make you curious. Then they’ll intentionally not resolve it until some episodes later. 

This leaves you wanting. You’ll crave the sweet release—the closure to the loop. You’ll wait desperately for the new episodes, and you’ll watch them immediately when they’re released. 

This technique isn’t just limited to TV shows. You can apply it to your own content too. Here’s an example: In Tim Ferriss’ post on how to cut weight, he says he’s done it multiple times:

Introduction in Tim Ferriss' post

But he doesn’t go into the “how to” right away. Instead, he segues into a story:

Introduction in Tim Ferriss' post

You have to keep reading to find out. Eventually, he resolves it:

Introduction in Tim Ferriss' post

Remember: You must always close the loop. Otherwise, this destroys the trust your readers place in you.

13. Establish proof and credibility

Scott Adams, most famous for his work “Dilbert,” writes in “Win Bigly”:

Persuasion is strongest when the messenger is credible.

People want to learn how to b-boy from a Red Bull BC One finalist. They want to learn how to finish obstacle courses from a Toughest Mudder competitor. And they want to learn how to lift from an actual Strength & Conditioning coach. 

One way to ensure your copy persuades, inspires trust, or gets someone to engage is to establish proof that you know what you’re saying. That you’re an authority and an expert. Because when you’re trustworthy and reputable, people will give credence to your words and believe what you say. 

There’s an SEO benefit too, specifically for E-A-T. E-A-T stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. It’s what Google’s human quality raters use to assess the quality of search results. While it’s not a direct ranking factor, improving E-A-T is important for many queries. 

What does that mean for your content? It means whenever possible, make sure to show the reader your authority, expertise, and credibility. (Notice what I did in the beginning?) It can be these:

  • Proof of accomplishments
  • Certifications
  • Awards
  • Social proof

And more.

Final thoughts

SEO isn’t only about ranking on Google. It’s also about getting your readers to read, share, and link to you. 

That’s why copywriting is important. Nobody is going to read a garbage piece of content—no matter how high it ranks.

Got any questions? Holla at me on Twitter.

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How Do I Get A Job With A PPC Agency




Conversion Tracking In PPC Campaigns

This month’s “Ask A PPC” question is particularly significant because the job market has been quite volatile.

“How do I get a job with a PPC agency when I have only worked in-house. What experience would they want?” – Karl Toronto

It’s understandable that people want to know which skills employers seek when hiring for a PPC team. There can be a disparity between what people think they need and what the market actually demands.

We’ll delve into some data and commentary to explain why various traits are valued.

It’s crucial to understand that the ideal candidates will be versatile and have an aptitude for all aspects of digital marketing.

However, no one can excel at everything, so leveraging your strengths or preferences is beneficial.

Ensure that you’re securing the best role for yourself while the company hiring you finds the best fit for them.

Here Are The Essential Skills

  • Analytics.
  • Creativity.
  • Ad network knowledge.
  • Willingness to test/learn.
  • Culture fit.

Discrepancy Between Market Demands And Perceived Needs

I conducted a poll on my LinkedIn to gauge the skills desired by current employers and practitioners.

Screenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024

Analytical skills emerged as the most sought-after trait. Employers seek individuals who can interpret numbers and discern the story behind them.

However, relying solely on analytical prowess may overlook the importance of creativity.

Creative skills are vital in today’s ad networks, especially emphasizing visual content like videos and campaign types that force visual content (Performace Max/Demand Gen). Neglecting creativity can hinder a company’s branding efforts.

Unexpectedly, ad network skills and cultural fit were deemed far less critical than analytical skills. Brands should prioritize team cohesion for long-term success, yet this aspect is often undervalued.

The disparity between job descriptions and actual skill requirements contributes to the difficulty in the job market.

Agencies that hire for how PPC used to work will be left wanting. Practitioners who only focus on popular skills instead of needed ones will be made obsolete by the privacy-first era obscuring data and AI owning creative.

Analytical Skills

Analytical abilities involve knowing where to find relevant data sources and understanding how they contribute to success.

While PPC historically relied on measurable outcomes, the landscape is evolving, necessitating adaptability in data analysis. Technical proficiency and strategic acumen are crucial for navigating different data sources.

These include:

  • Customer relationship management (CRM) systems.
  • Google Analytics 4 (GA4).
  • Ecommerce platforms.
  • Content management platforms (CMS).

Empathy for various ad channels improves your candidacy, and knowing how to work with post-click data will give you an edge over those who can only work with ad platform data.

While being highly technical isn’t required, having empathy for coding and scripts will give you a better chance to stay current with evolving data mechanics (especially as APIs become even more important for accessing data blocked by privacy-first regulations).

Here are some takes from PPC experts on why analytics is the most important:

A screenshot of a LinkedIn comment by Georgi Zayakov, who describes himself as analytical Screenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024
A LinkedIn post by Kathryn B., a paid media specialist at a PPC agencyScreenshot from LinkedIn, April 2024
Screenshot of a LinkedIn post by Nikolaos B., discussing how marketers must become data-savvyScreenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024


Creativity is essential for crafting compelling ad content, yet many PPC agencies struggle in this area.

Clients are often tasked with providing creative materials due to cost or complexity constraints.

You’ll get a competitive edge if you have these skills:

  • Video Editing: With the rise of PMax, as well as many ad networks leaning heavily into connected TV, having video editing chops will be a huge asset for any team. If you’re not comfortable using conventional editing tools, AI tools like Descript are a great way to take on those tasks.
  • Graphic Design: No matter the ad network your potential employer is hiring for, you will need some ability to design static images. Whether you use stock photos or AI-generated images or come up with the creative yourself, the days of purely text ads are over. Tools like Canva can help bridge the gap for less technical designers, but don’t discount ad network AI.
  • Content Creation: While the first two categories leaned toward visual content, written content is still important (i.e., most ad formats include some text). Having the ability to understand how diverse audiences prefer to be addressed while respecting the specific requirements of each format is a great skill to hone.

While some roles may prioritize analytics or ad network knowledge, emphasizing creative abilities can distinguish you during the hiring process.

Here are some experts who value creativity:

A screenshot of a LinkedIn post by Erik PetersonScreenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024
A screenshot of a Linkedin post by Amy HebdonScreenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024

Ad Network Knowledge

Ad network expertise is valuable, but adaptability is paramount as platforms evolve rapidly.

Some agencies will have specialists, while others hire folks they expect to be passable at every network they service. It’s important to understand what workflow will enable you to succeed.

If you’re happy working with all platforms, then don’t shy away from it. However, if you do better in focusing on one aspect of PPC, that’s totally valid. Just know it might limit your ability to get hired into smaller “familyesque” agencies.

Understanding auction dynamics and bidding strategies is crucial.

Many of us who entered the industry when manual bidding was more popular have an unfair advantage over those who came in during the Smart Bidding era (i.e., anything from 2020).

This is because manual bidding requires you to think about the mechanics of each ad platform’s auction and how you could use those mechanics to your advantage in building account structure.

Knowing what to track and allocating appropriate budgets are key considerations.

Understanding that some networks require more conversions than others to run (e.g., Meta Ads’ 50 in a 7-day period vs. Google Ads’ 15 in a 30-day period) should influence what you choose to track, as well as how you report the data.

Additionally, if you are under or over budget, you’ll set yourself up to fail. Knowing which channels require a big investment upfront and what the breaking point for each network is (either on underspending or spending too much) is critical.

Awareness of potential pitfalls, such as false positives or negatives, enhances campaign effectiveness. For example, it’s important to know how to check if automatically applying recommendations is on and what tasks it’s on for.

It’s worth noting that none of the experts who chimed in on the poll made a clear case for ad network knowledge specifically.

Willingness To Test

Success in PPC requires openness to experimentation and a willingness to adapt. While this wasn’t one of the criteria in the poll, it was one of the most popular traits experts look for in hiring.

Perfectionism can hinder progress in a fast-changing environment. Testing new ideas and embracing failure as an opportunity for growth are essential.

While analytical skills aid in test design, empathy and creativity are equally vital for devising effective experiments.

Here is an expert who favors a willingness to test:

Screenshot of a social media post by Mike RhodesScreenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024

Cultural Fit

Cultural alignment with an agency fosters productivity and job satisfaction. However, you can only achieve that by being honest with yourself about what you want and the mechanics of how you work.

Agencies demand intense effort and collaboration, making compatibility with colleagues crucial.

Anyone looking to make the shift from in-house to agency needs to be prepared for a much faster pace of work and a lot more agency.

Open communication with leadership regarding preferred management and learning styles will ensure a positive working relationship.

Respect for peers and a supportive atmosphere contribute to a fulfilling work environment.

Here are a few thoughts on cultural fit from polled experts:

The image shows a LinkedIn post by David Zebrout containing text discussing the importance of integrating PPC network knowledge with intertimed optimizations in generating profitable growth.Screenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024
LinkedIn post by Lisa Erschbamer discussing the importance of cultural fit and individual personality in team dynamics for effective performance at a PPC Agency.Screenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024
A screenshot of a LinkedIn post by Aaron Davies discussing the importance of cultural fit, individual skills, and team communication in marketing for a PPC agency. The post has reactions and a question comment by NavahScreenshot from author, LinkedIn, April 2024

Final Thoughts

Navigating the current job market can be challenging, but understanding industry needs and honing relevant skills increases your chances of success.

Balancing technical proficiency with creativity and cultural fit is essential for thriving in a PPC role. By aligning with market demands and showcasing your strengths, you can secure rewarding opportunities in the field.

Have a question you’d like us to address? Fill out the form!

More resources:

Featured Image: Paulo Bobita/Search Engine Journal

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Why Every Marketer Should Be On Reddit




Why Every Marketer Should Be On Reddit

In its nearly 20 years of existence, Reddit has built a robust, dynamic, and highly engaged community.

It has cemented itself as not only one of the key influencers for the internet culture we have come to know today, but also as one of the top 10 social media sites in the world, with more than 500,000 monthly visitors across more than 100,000 active communities.

Despite its size and influence, marketers have long avoided, overlooked, and failed to establish a presence on what is arguably one of the most influential social media sites today.

To be fair, Reddit has always been known as one of the hardest communities to have marketing success with, requiring months (if not years) of dedicated commitment to actually being a part of the community and engaging with your audience through meaningful, genuine, and honest interactions.

To many, that is just too much risk and too much work, but let’s be honest – most amazing things take risk and hard work. And for all of you who put in that work to be successful on Reddit, you already see the payoff it brings.

Regardless of the reasons, marketers who continue to overlook Reddit’s potential are missing out on an extremely influential community with ideal targeted demographics, where authenticity and genuine connections lead to valuable information, positive branding, and marketing success.

Not convinced? Let’s take a closer look at Reddit!

Reddit Stats You Cannot Ignore

Reddit users are dedicated to their use of the platform, with a reported 82 million (16.4%) of its 500 million users visiting the site daily, sharing over 1 billion posts, with over 16 billion comments across 100,000+ active communities, making it easily one of the top visited and most active sites in the United States today.

The user base is so loyal that they spend, on average, 20 minutes on the platform each day (and over 45 minutes a day for long-time users of more than 7 years) and, in many cases, are inactive on other social platforms.

This makes Reddit one of the only places to actually get in front of this massive audience, with 32% being inactive on Facebook, 37% on Instagram, 41% on TikTok, and 53% on X.

When it comes to demographics, a 2019 survey concluded that the overall Reddit audience was majority male (59%), ranged in age (36% aged 18-29; 25% aged 30-49), and well educated (42% college degree; 31% some college) making them an ideal audience many businesses looking for success.

They also helped Reddit improve revenues by 21% to $804 million in 2023, with a global addressable market for advertising estimated at $1.4 trillion by 2027.

Thought by many to be mostly a North American audience, Reddit claims more than 50% of its traffic comes from international users, a rather impressive climb from its earlier years.

It is important to remember, though, that Reddit is a platform that allows communities to grow and thrive, so those demographics change from subreddit to subreddit.

If that isn’t enough to grab your attention, surveys have found that 75% of users find Reddit a trustworthy source for making purchasing decisions.

For years now, it has been included heavily and prominently in Google search results, which have become even more visible due to reports following their inclusion in SGE results and with Google’s recent $60 million a year deal with Reddit to have real-time access to Reddit content and to use its content to train Google’s future AI models.

Speaking of Reddit’s visibility in Google’s search results, let’s take a closer look at why that deal is so important, especially to search marketers.

Reddit In Google Search, SGE, And Google’s Reddit Deal

For years, Reddit results have been prominently displayed in Google’s search results – so much so that users have even started adding the term “reddit” to the end of their search queries.

So often, you will see Google suggest search lines with the term “reddit” prefilled at the end.

Screenshot by author from search for [are purple mattresses good], Google, May 2024

Even without selecting the query that includes “reddit,” you will notice Reddit’s prominent placement in two places: discussions and forums, and Reddit sitelinks, which are both just below the ads and the first organic result.

Reddit resultsScreenshot by author from search for [are purple mattresses good], Google, May 2024

This was amplified by Google’s recent Helpful Content Update (HCU), which allowed platforms like Reddit and other forums to show up more frequently in search results,

Reddit’s ability to be helpful in satisfying a user’s search for information is so successful – in combination with reported shortages in new content for AI models from all major platforms – it is not surprising Google struck a deal with Reddit to show its content faster in search results and to use the content in training future AI models.

Since news of the deal between Reddit and Google was reported, there has been a lot of additional focus on Reddit’s visibility in Google’s search results.

Experts throughout the search industry report an increase in not only the total visibility of Reddit going up within search but also the speed at which a Reddit post is indexed and shown to users.

Google responded to concerns about Reddit showing up more in search results, saying that “some of the SEO folks who tend to be vocal on this platform (X) really dislike seeing more forum content in our search results. But actual searchers seem to like it. They proactively seek it out. It makes sense for us to be showing it to keep the search results relevant and satisfying for everyone.”

Google responded to concerns of Reddit showing up more in search resultsScreenshot by author from X (Twitter), May 2024

Although disputed by Google, Roger Montii wrote about one report of Reddit content being indexed within five minutes.

ChatGPT to Surface Reddit Content

Adding to the deal Reddit made with Google, it was recently reported that OpenAI has partnered with Reddit to surface their content in ChatGPT, adding to the clear value that both OpenAI and Google see in Reddit’s content today and in the future.

Of course, this has sparked a lot of interest in companies of all sizes. They want to figure out how their brands can participate and succeed on Reddit in hopes of increasing their visibility in Google’s search results, SGE, and ChatGPT and building their brand’s visibility amongst one of the most influential audiences on the internet today.

**Quick warning: Reddit requires genuine, long-term engagement and a strategy for success. So, I would definitely advise individuals and businesses to avoid trying to game, spam, or blindly jump into marketing on Reddit and take the time to really understand the platform, its audience, and your place of value within its communities.

Let’s look at how some major brands have been successful on Reddit in the past.

noosa Yoghurt

Noosa Yoghurt’s 2021 back-to-school campaign on Reddit was a great example of tapping into niche audiences to create engaging, user-driven content.

To capitalize on Reddit’s community of vocal yogurt enthusiasts, noosa launched a Flavor Poll that invited Redditors to upvote their favorite noosa flavors in the comments. This created a sense of community and interactivity around what could have been a standard poll.

Noosa Yoghurt’s 2021 back-to-school campaign on Reddit.Screenshot by author from Reddit, May 2024

After tallying the upvotes, noosa published a Promoted Post that showcased the results using a sleek custom infographic, highlighting the community’s favorites while also giving the brand important insight into consumer preferences.

Noosa published a Promoted Post that showcased the results.Screenshot by author from Reddit, May 2024

The results:

  • 49% increase in brand recall among Reddit users who were exposed to the campaign.
  • 30% increase in brand favorability.
  • 39% increase in purchase intent (15X the typical lift observed in the food vertical).
  • 50+ billion monthly views.

Sony Pictures Germany

To drum up excitement around the release of “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” in Germany, Sony Pictures Germany crafted a Reddit campaign that combined organic and promoted content to engage the platform’s robust fan communities.

The brand created a Reddit account under the protagonist’s name, u/MilesMorales, and used it to share exclusive content directly within Spiderman-related subreddits.

It also organized an AMA with the German voice actor Miles Morales to create a more personal connection with fans and promoted video posts featuring the movie trailer to amplify the excitement.

Sony Pictures Germany crafted a Reddit campaign.Screenshot by author from Reddit, May 2024

The results:

  • Sony Pictures Germany achieved a click-through rate (CTR) that was 344% higher than that of its standard paid media.
  • 618,000 impressions.
  • The film remained No. 1 on the German movie charts for three consecutive weeks.

It is important to note that promoting your content and your brand on Reddit is definitely not the only value Reddit can bring you and your business.

Reddit is an amazing place to get honest feedback.

Whether you are trying to figure out what your target audience wants from your brand, test out a new feature or concept before investing and launching it openly, or even just to have continued open communication with your customers to support them and keep them connected to your brand, Reddit can help you succeed in an amazing way.

Transamerica Helping Reddit Make Dollars Make Sense

Transamerica’s campaign on Reddit is a great example of a company identifying an opportunity to connect with its target audience on the subreddit /r/finance.

This allows the company to better understand its customers’ needs and focus on content creation and future marketing plans.

Transamerica’s campaign on RedditScreenshot by author from Reddit, May 2024

Aligning itself with its audience by demonstrating awareness of the topics around personal finance happening in the subreddit, as well as acknowledging the Redditors working at the company, it asked what topics it could create “specifically for the reddit community” around the topic of finance.

It stayed involved and engaged throughout the campaign, responding to threads and maintaining a lighthearted and sometimes humorous tone.

Transamerica’s campaign on RedditScreenshot by author from Reddit, May 2024

After getting all the feedback it needed, it created content around the more popular requests, going as far as branding and designing them similar to Reddit.

IRA vs 401K venn diagramScreenshot by author from Reddit, May 2024

It even took the time to individually comment a link to the published content on its site, bringing attention back to the overall campaign and the content it created.

This campaign was 10 years ago, and it is still referenced as a core example of engaging on Reddit as a brand in a respectful, thoughtful, and meaningful way.

Why You Should Be On Reddit Wrapup

TL;DR: If your brand has something meaningful to say and is interested in truly connecting with your audience, then yes, you should be on Reddit.

These successful brand campaign examples showcase Reddit’s power when used correctly. With research to understand the specific communities you want to reach, Reddit can have exceptional performance compared to other channels.

The stakes are high to get it right because Reddit communities can be highly negative toward self-serving promotion. But if you put in the effort and solve people’s needs and problems, Reddit has the potential to be a high-performance channel.

Edit: Updated daily active users figure based on Reddit’s Q1 Earnings Report

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Featured Image: Julia Tim/Shutterstock

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No Algorithmic Actions For Site Reputation Abuse Yet




Looking up at an angle at the Google sign on the Head Office for Canada

Google’s Search Liaison, Danny Sullivan, has confirmed that the search engine hasn’t launched algorithmic actions targeting site reputation abuse.

This clarification addresses speculation within the SEO community that recent traffic drops are related to Google’s previously announced policy update.

Sullivan Says No Update Rolled Out

Lily Ray, an SEO professional, shared a screenshot on Twitter showing a significant drop in traffic for the website Groupon starting on May 6.

Ray suggested this was evidence that Google had begun rolling out algorithmic penalties for sites violating the company’s site reputation abuse policy.

However, Sullivan quickly stepped in, stating:

“We have not gone live with algorithmic actions on site reputation abuse. I well imagine when we do, we’ll be very clear about that. Publishers seeing changes and thinking it’s this — it’s not — results change all the time for all types of reasons.”

Sullivan added that when the actions are rolled out, they will only impact specific content, not entire websites.

This is an important distinction, as it suggests that even if a site has some pages manually penalized, the rest of the domain can rank normally.

Background On Google’s Site Reputation Abuse Policy

Earlier this year, Google announced a new policy to combat what it calls “site reputation abuse.”

This refers to situations where third-party content is published on authoritative domains with little oversight or involvement from the host site.

Examples include sponsored posts, advertorials, and partner content that is loosely related to or unrelated to a site’s primary purpose.

Under the new policy, Google is taking manual action against offending pages and plans to incorporate algorithmic detection.

What This Means For Publishers & SEOs

While Google hasn’t launched any algorithmic updates related to site reputation abuse, the manual actions have publishers on high alert.

Those who rely heavily on sponsored content or partner posts to drive traffic should audit their sites and remove any potential policy violations.

Sullivan’s confirmation that algorithmic changes haven’t occurred may provide temporary relief.

Additionally, his statements also serve as a reminder that significant ranking fluctuations can happen at any time due to various factors, not just specific policy rollouts.


Will Google’s future algorithmic actions impact entire websites or specific content?

When Google eventually rolls out algorithmic actions for site reputation abuse, these actions will target specific content rather than the entire website.

This means that if certain pages are found to be in violation, only those pages will be affected, allowing other parts of the site to continue ranking normally.

What should publishers and SEOs do in light of Google’s site reputation abuse policy?

Publishers and SEO professionals should audit their sites to identify and remove any content that may violate Google’s site reputation abuse policy.

This includes sponsored posts and partner content that doesn’t align with the site’s primary purpose. Taking these steps can mitigate the risk of manual penalties from Google.

What is the context of the recent traffic drops seen in the SEO community?

Google claims the recent drops for coupon sites aren’t linked to any algorithmic actions for site reputation abuse. Traffic fluctuations can occur for various reasons and aren’t always linked to a specific algorithm update.

Featured Image: sockagphoto/Shutterstock

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