If you’re not publishing, you don’t exist

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Everyone’s a publisher. Well, to be more accurate, everyone has the ability to publish. And, when it comes to the World Wide Web and the era of search, if you’re not publishing, you don’t exist.

An SEO expert once told me that the best place to hide a dead body was the second page of a Google search result. While that hilarious joke was intended to illustrate the importance of ranking on search engines, such as Google, it holds a lot more truth than it intended.

Google has a very complex algorithm design to serve up the results a particular uses wants and needs. Google assigns value to a certain website based on a plethora of criteria that determine when and where that page will appear in search results.

If you're not publishing, you don't exist, says @jeramygordon Click To Tweet

Search engine optimization professionals have been trying to game Google’s algorithm since the very beginning and to say Google is wise to these shenanigans is an understatement. Google – and all the other search engines, including Bing and Yahoo! – assign a value to a website based largely on the content that appears on that site.

Constant updates and additions are a positive signal to search engines that your website is relevant and keeping up with the times. Sites that sit idly by lose their authority quickly. One of the best ways to stop this from happening is through content marketing.

If you’re not in Google, you don’t exist

The best way to ensure your website ranks for your desired keywords is to publish content related to those keywords. Without content, your website will not appear in Google, and we all know what that means: If you’re not in Google, you don’t exist.

Appearing on search engine results pages (SERP) is important for many reasons. Even if you’re not taking on any new customers, there are several reasons to keep your business alive in search. Here are a few:

  • Keeping the trust of current customers
  • Appearing traceable to vendors, lenders and other business partners
  • Reputation management

Keeping the trust of customers

Your customers want to know you are who you say you are. Even if you’re a one-man shop, having an online presence specific to your field can help put a customer at ease.

Appearing traceable

Doing business in the digital age requires a digital presence. Need a loan from a bank? How about a line of credit from a vendor? Chances are that if a vendor or lender can’t find your business with a quick Google search, your odds of being approved for that line of credit will drop significantly. Maintaining a solid digital footprint can make or break a business.

Reputation management

Just because you aren’t actively publishing online doesn’t mean your customers and potential customers aren’t. Sites like Yelp and Facebook have given customers a soap box to spout off about you and your business – good or bad, true or false. Online reputation management is important and your website is your key weapon of defense.

Publish or die

Ok, I know, that sounds a little harsh. But there’s some truth to that heading. There’s a common saying academia: publish or perish. This is used by professors and researchers who live by the idea that if they’re not constantly publishing, their career will suffer.

The academia saying 'publish or perish' applies to #search as well, says @jeramygordon Click To Tweet

This same principal holds true for digital marketing. Content fuels search engines. Without content, they’re useless and without content, so is your website. Search engine optimization (SEO) tactics have changed over the years, but one truth has remained: content is king. But just publishing content for content’s sake won’t work. You need a plan and strategy, and you need to stick to it.

Publishing with purpose

When creating new content for you online properties, make sure that content serves the greater purpose of your business and your customers. You know what your customers want and when they want it, so build your content to fulfill that purpose.

Always think about your audience

I have said this before, but if you’re not solving a problem with your content, you’re creating one. Remember, content creation is not about you. If you don’t know what your audience wants, ask them. It’s really that easy.

Keep your eye on the prize

SEO is important, but you should write for your audience, not for SEO. Google’s very own webmaster guidelines give the following advice:

Create a useful, information-rich site, and write pages that clearly and accurately describe your content.

Think about the words users would type to find your pages, and make sure that your site actually includes those words within it.

For more information on how content marketing can help improve your search engine rankings, contact the Lorem Ipsum Company today for a free content analysis.

Jeramy Gordon is the founder and Chief Content Officer at the Lorem Ipsum Company. He has been creating successful content strategies for almost two decades and believes in the power of high-quality content. He lives in Orange County, California, with his wife and two children.

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