Content is king, but first, you need an audience to find and consume your content. To attract your target audience, your content needs to be optimized for search engines to continually rank high in Internet searches. To rank high in searches, your content needs to retain its value over time. How do you create valuable content? The answer is evergreen content.
What is Evergreen Content?
Evergreen content is one of the most useful and effective parts of a content marketing strategy. Taking its name from evergreen trees, which retain their leaves all year, evergreen content remains “fresh” and maintains its relevance and value long after its publication date. Evergreen content is not time-sensitive, and the topic is always of interest to the reader, regardless of season or year.
Evergreen content isn’t limited to current trends and focuses on a topic highly relevant to your website’s niche. Also, evergreen content tends to be targeted to beginners rather than experts.
Evergreen content can be in a variety of formats including blog posts, infographics, images, and videos. Other examples of evergreen content include:
- Lists (also known as listicles)
- Tips and Tricks posts
- Guides – beginner’s guides, buyers guides, etc.
- Product reviews
- Best practices
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Industry Resources
- Glossaries of Terms and Phrases
In contrast, non-evergreen content is dated and has a set expiration date. News articles, statistical reports, seasonal blog posts are not evergreen content because they become obsolete after some time.
A great example of how specific words can be used to make content evergreen can be seen on SmartMove’s infographic about renter trends. Instead of using a title that contains dated terms such as, “How to Attract and Keep a Renter in 2019” they instead use broader wording that will not need to be updated in the future: “How to Attract and Keep Today’s Renter”.
Image Source: SmartMove
Why Evergreen Content is Important
Creating evergreen content, which remains in demand regardless of when it’s read, has many advantages including:
- Requires less work: The more you can use the content you create, the more valuable it becomes. Content doesn’t need to be changed or updated very often, if ever. Because it saves time, the ROI for evergreen content is tremendous.
- Drives regular organic traffic: Because evergreen content ranks high with search engines, it’s found more and attracts organic traffic at a consistent rate over the long-term without a decline.
- Achieves high search engine rankings: Google doesn’t rank out-of-date content when responding to search queries. Because evergreen content is high-quality and timeless, it will continue to rank high in searches over time.
- Remains informative: Continues to be useful to your audience year after year and keeps people on your website.
- Builds backlinks: Other websites will link to informative and high-quality content when they write about a topic. By providing evergreen content, you increase the chance of websites linking back to your content.
- Lowers website bounce rate: Informative, relevant and timeless content keeps readers on your website longer, telling search engines your content is valuable and fulfilled the search request.
- Supports long-term SEO strategy: You can naturally insert keywords in your content and include internal links to other content on your website.
How to Find Evergreen Topics
Evergreen topics retain consistent interest and search volume over a long period. Topics such as careers, health, finance, and family work well for evergreen content because they are a part of everyday life and do not rely on current news events.
To ensure you find the right topics to attract your target audience, ask yourself if the topic will still be important a year from now. Here are some ways to find evergreen topics:
- Keyword research: Use keyword tools such as Ahrefs or SEMRush to find keywords driving the most traffic and the highest search ranking. Google Trends can also help to find the most searched keywords.
- Answer questions your audience is asking: Perform searches on public forums including Quora or Reddit to see what types of questions your audience is looking for. Stack Overflow is another forum, which is strictly for technology developers. Other tools to use include Answer the Public, which suggests topic ideas and questions based on Google and Bing results.
- Analyze your competitors: Review your content your competitor produces. Use an SEO tool to find top pages by topic. BuzzSumo is a tool that shows the number of shares and backlinks an article gets a month after publication.
How to Create Evergreen Content
Once you have an idea of the topics, it’s time to create the content. Remember content doesn’t always have to be an article or blog post. You can use infographics, video and other visuals for evergreen content. Here are some tips for creating quality evergreen content:
- Deliver 10X content: Moz’s Rand Fishkin coined the term “10X content” to define content considered 10 times better than any other content on the subject. 10X content should be a substantive combination of high-quality, trustworthy, useful and accurate information. The content should solve a problem or answer a question.
- Make it unique to your brand: Align your content to your brand’s voice. The content will be read for a very long time, so it needs to represent your brand accurately.
- Get emotional: Your content should resonate with your audience and make them feel something.
- Forget dates: Adding a date to your article will automatically put an expiration date on your content.
- Project authority: To establish yourself as an expert in a certain topic, offer definitive and well-researched insights in your content and you” become a trusted authority.
Repurpose content: Use the evergreen content in other formats. For example, a blog post can be turned into an infographic or video. In the example below, the site I Am Networthy repurposes snippets from their ebook as information “nuggets” that can then be pitched as an individual resource and become linked to other relevant sites.
Image Source: Net Worthy
To continue building an audience, you need to keep your evergreen content fresh. Refreshing content can help with SEO because Google uses content freshness as a ranking factor. Revisit the content every few months to:
- Check for broken links
- Change the publishing date on the content so it appears as new
- Add newly relevant keywords to headlines
- Update any out-of-date information (landing page links, screenshots, data, etc.)
- Repost the content to the first page of your blog
In addition to content creation, you need to promote your evergreen content to ensure your target audience can find it. Some ways to promote your content include:
Highlight it on your website: Make it easy for visitors to find the content by creating images for sidebars or add topics to menus.
Link to other evergreen pieces from other sections of your site: Add links in blog posts and other pages.
Build links: use offsite links to promote your content. GM of CanvasPeople, Jason Yao reminds us, “To get other bloggers and websites to link to your content, reach out and send them the link to the content. Submit guest posts to other industry blogs and include backlinks to your evergreen content to see traffic grow on your site as well as become a thought leader in your niche”.
Share on social media: Keep reposting this article on social media to reach a larger audience. Add new hashtags on tweets and posts.
While researching hot topics and SEO keywords may be a bit of a challenge in the beginning, evergreen content allows your website to maintain relevancy and authority without constant revisions in the future. Take your time curating lots of unique and exciting content that your target audience will love to see your rankings increase over time.