Survey Says Content Creation is the Most Effective SEO Strategy
Despite social media creeping up on search as a leading source of referral traffic, search engines are still the number one way a user will find your site on the web. At the same time, you know that you need to undertake certain optimization strategies in order to get seen on search engines in the first place.
However, deciding which SEO strategies will benefit you most can be extremely difficult, as SEO's ROI is often difficult to measure, and search engine ranking criteria is changing all the time. Luckily, a new survey shines some light on what's working for most marketers.
Content Creation is the Top Strategy
The SEO Survey Summary Report, conducted by marketing research firm Ascend2, surveyed 286 marketing, sales and general business professionals worldwide. Published in June of this year, the report outlines some valuable and surprising information regarding the SEO strategies that marketers are having the most success with right now. The most effective tactic - by a very wide margin - was "relevant content creation," which 72 percent of marketers surveyed said was the best SEO strategy available. Here's how all the options compared:
- 72 percent - Relevant content creation
- 48 percent - Keyword/phrase research
- 34 percent - Frequent website updating
- 33 percent - Relevant link building
- 28 percent - Social media integration
- 23 percent - Frequent blogging
- 17 percent - Mobile search optimization
- 16 percent - Website URL restructuring
Surprisingly, "relevant content creation" comes in at number one, while "frequent blogging" is only favored by 23 percent of marketers. This seems to indicate that other types of content production and marketing, aside from blogging, get better SEO results. It also suggests that blogging may indeed be declining as a business strategy overall. In addition, it's interesting to see mobile search optimization so low on the list, although it's very possible it could rise significantly over the next few years.
It's Also One of the Most Difficult
Of course, content creation likely wouldn't be as effective if everybody could do it well. When asked to list the most difficult SEO tactics, the results were:
- 52 percent - Relevant link building
- 46 percent - Relevant content creation
- 28 percent - Frequent blogging
- 28 percent - Frequent website updating
- 25 percent - Mobile search optimization
- 22 percent - Social media integration
- 20 percent - Website URL restructuring
- 20 percent - Keyword/phrase research
It's no surprise that link building tops the list, as it's long been one of the most difficult and misunderstood SEO tactics throughout the years. Content creation coming in second likely has to do with one word: relevant. Anybody can write a piece of content, but using content for SEO benefits involves significant amounts of research and planning, not to mention competent execution and measuring. Combine this with the fact that the competition is growing every day, and it looks like content marketing will continue to be one of the most difficult but effective SEO strategies in the near future.