Big Brands & Content Relevance
Google is getting smarter. It’s no longer good enough to fill your website or social media feeds with pages of content, hoping your URLs will get indexed. The text must be highly focused and relevant to your industry.
Content usefulness and search intent is at the root of why someone is using a search engine. So, Google wants to make sure that your website is truly targeted to what someone wants to find in their search engine results.
Focus, Focus, Focus
We have a client right now, for example, that casts a very big net over multiple keywords in terms of wanting to capture traffic. While their business is somewhat relevant to that core set of keywords that have a ton of search volume, their business model only allows them to work with a sliver of that population. Even if they do capture a huge amount of traffic through search, that broad-category search intent isn’t relevant to their website or their business.
They’re much more niche. And, Google knows it.
Making this company rank for an umbrella of keywords just doesn’t work based on search intent. While that might frustrate the business owner, it does make potential customers more happy as they only want to land on search results that are actually relevant to what they need.
Great content and keyword rankings aren’t enough. Content relevance and search intent should be part of your marketing goals from day one. And of course, the technical aspect of content creation can’t be ignored. I see some brands skip over the really important technical aspects, like budgeting for stellar writers who create unique original content, making sure the IT developers work with the designers and SEO strategists to ensure that all the pages work (no 404’s) and that their website is secure. Some even think it’s OK to buy mass amounts of generalized content (that’s been posted on other sites) without realizing Google penalizes websites that post duplicate content.
JCPenney is the poster-child of what not to do. In 2010, the company was caught paying for and publishing mass amounts of backlinks links which ranked high in Google. But, what the company didn’t realize, was that the links sent their customers to porn sites as well as sites completely unrelated to products they offer. This did not make customers happy!
Although Google didn’t totally ban the retailer’s site, it did down rank them for many of the keywords they should have been ranking for, which ultimately hurt the business. Why? They didn’t post relevant content for their customers, so Google buried their links in search results.
One Site or Many?
When businesses realize being incredibly focused and relevant is key, they wonder if they should launch multiple websites, each highlighting one core aspect of their business or product line.
The answer is no.
I think it’s better to have one big site, all on one domain, to help build their domain authority. Each time you launch a new website, you’re splitting your power into smaller chunks. Instead, you want one mega website that you can grow and add pages to which will help capture additional search volume, more qualified traffic, more sales or leads and everything that goes along with that additional traffic to your site. I don’t think big brands are, or should be, launching new sites that are trying to cannibalize their own efforts. I mean, who wants the added stress of having to compete with themselves? Focusing on their own domain and building a better more focussed site is the smart choice.
As your big brand works on its content strategy, don’t forget that there’s more than just basic SEO and keyword research. Content relevance and search intent help drive the best, qualified leads to your website. If you need help sorting out your content marketing plan, we’d love to guide you. Contact Volume Nine today.