By Ankur Tiwari on 08-09-2020Follow @Ankurt04
Content that ranks on Google's first page has an unfair advantage over those who don't.
It attracts massive organic traffic without being promoted.
One-third of all content pieces that I have written in the last ten months, rank on Google's first page. That's a 33% success rate in less than a year.
In this post, I will share my process that you can use to publish content with a high probability of ranking on search engine.
This post is a part of the Organic SaaS Growth newsletter. Subscribe here.
Let's start by looking at some of my content pieces that are ranking on Google's first page.
I write for SaaS founders and marketers. My audience love case studies. I researched and wrote an analysis of Notion's growth strategies that ranks #1 on Google for the search term 'notion growth' ahead of mighty TechCrunch, NYTimes, and Forbes.
A crucial step in the SaaS buying journey is prospects searching for product reviews. Pythonanywhere is a web-hosting service for Python web apps, and I rank #1 in Google for the keyword 'pythonanywhere review' .
I wrote this review before launching the Organic SaaS Growth (OSG) newsletter and had no audience at that time. So, I published it on the Medium to leverage their distribution.
Growth loops have helped many internet businesses with compounding growth. There is a lot of interest in growth loops among SaaS founders and marketers. I wrote the definitive guide to growth loops in May 2020, and it started ranking on Google's first page within two months from its publication, competing head-to-head with the content published by some of the world's most famous internet marketers.
This blog post is ranking at #1 on Google SERP for the keywords "how to build growth loops" and "saas growth loops".
This post also ranks on Google's first page for a broader top-of-the-funnel keyword "growth loops".
Note: This guide is undoubtedly the best resource on the Internet on growth loops, even better than some of the paid courses. If you want to learn about growth loops, this is the only resource you need to read. Check it out here.
I love Webflow's content and was curious about their growth strategies. So I researched and published a case study on the strategies they have used for growth over the years. It is a recent post and ranks on Google for the keyword 'webflow growth'.
Interestingly, I didn't do any keyword research for this post. I followed my curiosity and wrote about all the growth strategies that I found working for Webflow.
I admire Zoom as a product and its founder Eric Yuan as an entrepreneur. Zoom is also one of the fastest grown startups of this decade. It seemed to me that many SaaS founders would be interested in learning about Zoom's growth strategies.
When I googled to learn about their growth strategies, all I found were blog posts talking about top-level marketing stuff like being customer-driven and spending money on billboards, nothing actionable. So, in my post , I included actionable growth strategies that SaaS founders can learn and readily adopt.
This post ranks on Google for the keyword 'zoom growth strategy'.
The lack of actionable growth strategies that I encountered during my research for this post was one of the key inspirations for the Organic SaaS Growth newsletter.
Over time I have developed a content marketing framework optimized for conversion. I published the curiosity framework as part of the Organic SaaS Growth newsletter. Today, I rank on Google's first page alongside high authority websites like Harvard business review and Lynda for the keyword "curiosity framework".
"Organic SaaS Growth" is a keyword that I had created as a part of the blue ocean strategy for my growth consulting services. I dominate the Google's organic result for it. On the Google SERP, not one but three results for "organic saas growth" link either to my website or to the websites talking about my newsletter.
Notes on the organic SaaS growth are a great resource for anyone interested in SaaS growth.
You might have noticed that compared to my website, most other websites that my articles compete with on Google SERP have very high domain authority. My posts ranking above these sites busts the myth of domain authority being a constraint for ranking on Google SERP.
If these examples have inspired you to create rank worthy content to improve organic traffic to your website, today's guide is for you.
Let's dive in.
Here is a step-by-step process to create content that can rank on Google SERP:
Find topics at the intersection of:
For example, if you are selling ABC CRM then:
With this, you instantly have powerful topics that can drive high conversions. Generally speaking, topics that bring in high traffic and topics that drive high conversions are different. So if you want more traffic, you can write about "40 ways to generate quality leads with ABC CRM" whereas if you want more conversion you can write about "World's Simplest CRM: No consultant or training required". Not everyone will be interested in a simple CRM; some people look for powerful CRM even if its complex.
If you are a small team or just starting with content marketing, you will do better by publishing content on topics that drive high conversions. These are bottom-of-the-funnel topics that deeply interest a subset of your niche.
For a small team, the most ROI focused content strategy would be to write only for the bottom of the funnel, and then repurpose and distribute it.— Ankur Tiwari (@Ankurt04) April 8, 2020
Keyword research is essential but should not dictate your content strategy. You would want to include words from your audience vocabulary so that you can communicate better but not turn your blog post into a sleazy advertorial.
Writing engaging content is a skill learned with practice and keen observation. However, to produce quality content, here are a few key tactics that I have found to be very important:
Even though SEO is a big topic and there are some really good resources freely available by Bruce Clay and Brian Dean on the subject , you can quickly start and will do better than most of your competitors in attracting organic traffic if you adopt the following suggestions:
My articles that rank on Google SERP compete against the articles published by prominent publications, famous marketers and SaaS companies.
But I do not have even a fraction of the audience that they have, and I have not yet run ads for content promotion.
I am not against running ads, sometimes they are necessary. I just don't need them as of now.
What I instead do is to run a 'lean distribution' campaign, in which I use organic channels to target the best-fit audience.
Here is my organic content promotion process:
With this, I attract low to medium volume but best-fit traffic. When I will need to scale, I will broaden the target audience from 'best-fit' to 'good-fit'.
For your business, you should find channels that can bring best-fit traffic. These channels can be organic or paid.
Prioritizing high quality, best-fit traffic over high traffic volume requires fewer efforts, fewer resources and results into a higher conversion rate.
With the techniques discussed in the post, you have a high probability of ranking on Google SERP and compete against big boys.
However, sometimes you will find specific, highly competitive keywords in your vertical for which it won't be easy to rank.
In such cases, you can craft a niche to suit your product and develop content around it. For example, you probably can not rank on Google SERP for the keyword 'CRM', but you can rank for the keyword 'Best CRM for B2C SaaS'.
Select and pursue—you don't have to fight all the battles for victory.
And even if your high-quality content could not rank on Google SERP, you can always use lean distribution to reach out to the specific audience, convert them and generate revenue.
That’s all I wanted to discuss today on ranking your content on Google SERP. I welcome your suggestions, questions and feedback.
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