The anatomy of the perfect post varies from blog to blog.
Regardless, it’s difficult to deny that a truly remarkable post, one that warrants social shares, tons of traffic and establishes authority for your business, takes some serious thought and legwork to craft.
Unfortunately, many bloggers today focus on the now rather than considering timeless topics and posts that will truly set them apart from the competition in the long-run.
Neil Patel’s guide to starting a blog notes the need for bloggers to cover a wide range of topics, focusing on what readers are most passionate or excited about. Likewise, Patel suggests topics which work to solve common problems of your readership.
While modern bloggers are expected to be trendy and topical, consider the benefits of crafting the occasional piece of evergreen content as means of helping out your audience and establishing search engine dominance.
Why You Should Go Green
Evergreen content has existed within the blogosphere forever, long before it became a buzzword.
The concept of evergreen content is relatively straightforward. In short, evergreen content represents articles and blogs which will maintain their relevance and usefulness to readers months or perhaps even years after being published.
Ideally, all of our blog content should be relevant to our readership, right? Of course.
However, much of today’s content has a relatively short shelf-life, especially as many marketers attempt to hop on the “viral” bandwagon. For example, a meme mentioned in your post tomorrow will probably fall flat on readers four years from now.
Likewise, a how-to SEO guide from 2010 is likely filled with outdated information and irrelevant statistics due to the ever-evolving nature of Internet marketing.
Evergreen content allows you to target both traditional and longtail keywords that have staying power. For example, if you had a post called:
- “How Pokemon Go Totally Changed the Summer of 2016,” it wouldn’t have the lasting value of “Pokemon Go Tips for Beginners,” as the game will likely have staying power, but the specifics of its launch will not
- “2016’s New SEO Breakthroughs” won’t have the long-lasting educational value that a post like “Learning From the Best: Technical SEO 101” will
- “The Best Snapchat Filters This Year (So Far),” it won’t draw the long term audience that “A Grownup’s Guide to Snapchat” will, as specific filters are temporary, but new people flock to the platform every day
- “These Brands Are Killing it on WeChat,” it won’t bring in the evergreen search traffic that “Does Marketing Work on WeChat?” might
On the flip side, many bloggers experience the phenomenon of seeing their evergreen pieces become their most popular posts in the long-run due to their SEO potential. How so?
- Evergreen content has the ability to target keywords are not time sensitive, covering topics that users will be always be searching for (such as “how to change a car battery” or “how to tune a guitar in drop D”)
- Since evergreen pieces are often used to educate readers and can be referenced time and time again, they are prime for sharing and building backlinks
- Many evergreen articles are extremely comprehensive, and are therefore are longer than the traditional post; such length allows bloggers to integrate more keywords and links
Evergreen content isn’t about hype; instead, it’s about providing value to users and beefing up your organic search strategy. While evergreen content shouldn’t necessarily be the cornerstone of your company blog, consider crafting the occasional evergreen piece as means of building your business for the long-term. With a bit of planning and creativity, just about any-sized blog can take advantage of evergreen content, regardless of niche or industry.
Now, the big question remains: how do I craft evergreen content to ensure readers and link juice for years to come?
Take Out the Trendy
First and foremost, evergreen pieces do not rely on trends as means of relevance; instead, they rely on useful information, often targeted at newbies.
It’s natural for bloggers to integrate topical references in their content as means of hooking or getting a chuckle out of readers; however, such references are out of place in an evergreen piece. Therefore, evergreen blogs should avoid…
- Current events, news and politics (which can often be sensitive topics in the first place)
- Pop culture references, such as popular songs, celebrities, television shows and films
- Trends or statistics which may have the potential to become dated (such as those regarding emerging technologies)
Simply put, anything mentioned in an evergreen blog shouldn’t seem foreign to readers five years from now.
Be a Teacher
Oftentimes, we turn to Google when we’re hungry for answers. Most of our Google results bring us to blogs, and therefore bloggers are expected to teach visitors.
Use your evergreen posts as means of becoming a teacher, specifically targeting the curiosity of those may not be familiar with your topic. Regardless of your topic, ensure that your evergreen posts are…
- Relatively simple and straightforward in terms of language, as not to alienate beginners who are just learning the ropes of your topic
- Broken down into steps, using bullet-points, lists and short paragraphs wherever possible
- Specific in terms of scope, ensuring that you’re adequately covering your topic and providing visitors with something of value.
Choose Timeless Topics
Especially in the Internet marketing sphere, it’s often difficult to come up with evergreen topics because technology and software are constantly evolving. For example, lengthy articles discussing how to setup a WordPress blog on a webhost from three years ago may now be obsolete as many hosts have introduced single-click integration.
Choosing a timeless topic requires careful thought and research. Such posts might include…
- “Ten Books That Inspired Me to Become an Entrepreneur” (this topic allows the blogger to rate, review and discuss books published in the past, preventing the content from becoming dated)
- “Why I Decided to Quit My Boring IT Job and Start My Own Business” (this topic allows the blogger to recall a personal tale that doesn’t have a shelf-life)
- “How to Declutter and Create a More Peaceful Office Space” (this how-to topic doesn’t rely on trends or technology to stay relevant)
Each of the aforementioned articles has the potential to reach and resonate with future readers, even if they were written years ago.
The Option Revisit and Revise
Although not ideal, you can revisit and revise your evergreen pieces if necessary. For example, the aforementioned example of how to declutter your office could be updated to reflect the popularity of standing desks and yoga ball chairs in recent years. Although the article could stand without such an update,
Wait. Doesn’t that defeat the whole purpose of this whole “evergreen” thing? Shouldn’t the article be able to stand on its own without revisions?
Considering the SEO benefits of revising content, including providing more relevant to users and the potential to target more keywords, there’s no harm in updating a piece if it’s beneficial to your readership. Updating such content is common practice and further shows your willingness to help out readers by keeping your content fresh.
While you shouldn’t feel required to update your evergreen articles, there’s absolutely no harm in surveying your content to see if there’s anything that could be revised to better benefit your readership and boost your blog’s relevance in the eyes of Google.
Evergreen content can play an integral role in your blog’s content strategy. Consider brainstorming evergreen topics for your next blog post, whether you’re looking to establish yourself as an authority or boost your rankings in the SERPs.