Content Marketing Blog mint

Content Marketing Blog

How to Create Content for Stand-out Search Results

What we’ve learned at MintCopy

When you run a search for ‘what is content,’ you’ll get more than a few links and snippets. Now, in addition to the traditional blue titles, green web locations, and black text blocks, you’ll see a colorful display of videos and images for related search options. Change your search to 'buy television near me,' and results expand to include current deals and maps to local stores. Searching for answers online today produces a variety of visual resources.

Recent studies from UX research firm Nielsen Norman Group and search experience company Yext suggest that variations in search result presentation aren’t slowing searchers’ response times. In less than 6 seconds, most people ‘pinball’ across the page to consider their search results and choose an option. Engagement after a search grew faster than overall impressions, meaning consumers are either getting better at searching or search engines are producing more useful results. 

What implications do these findings have for your content marketing efforts? Let’s build on our recent review of how people read by examining how you can ensure your content shows up in search results and spurs action.

Use the Power of Headlines (aka Titles)

The Nielsen Norman Group study shows that while searchers notice visuals, compelling titles and descriptions often draw more attention.

A captivating title can become the first piece of information searchers use when deciding which results to click. Here are a few insights about headlines that we’ve gathered as a content marketing agency:

  • Create a unique, specific headline that spells out what your content explains. When your title provides an 'instant answer,' you're more likely to generate interest in your content.
  • Use friendly, relatable words, and keep your title short. Headlines with 6 to 9 words will show up entirely in search results and earn those valuable click-throughs.
  • Make sure your headline matches your content. Sorry we had to include this in our list, but you'd be surprised at how often mismatches occur.

Include ‘Rich Answers’ in Your Content

Rich answers are a Google feature that shows a snippet of information from a piece of content shown on page 1 of search results. Importantly, these text boxes aren't always from the top ranked source on the page. Capturing an answer box means Google identifies your content as the best response to a query.

We’ve noticed that rich answers have a few common characteristics:

  • Answers are direct and concise, usually less than 100 words or 3 to 4 sentences. Think of this solution as your 'elevator pitch' where you only have a few seconds to connect with searchers.
  • Rich answers often include numbered lists, tables, or graphs, particularly when addressing ‘how’ queries.
  • Details are correct. Again, we apologize for stating the obvious, but getting to the top of the search results means you’ll need current and completely accurate information.

Craft Content that Delivers on Search Previews

A successful search experience produces satisfying results. Failing to fulfill the insights promised by your headline or rich answer is like hosting a conference where the best part of the event is the agenda. If you lead searchers to believe you have relevant, useful information, be sure to write robust content that meets those expectations.

Ultimately, you’ll build connections when your content marketing reflects a thoughtful customer-centric strategy. When you know customers’ pain points, understand their language, and provide helpful content to support their journey, you’ll get results, even if you’re not #1 on SERPs.

Would you like to know more about creating content for stand-out search results? The team at MintCopy, a content marketing agency in Mississauga, Canada, would value the opportunity to talk with you. We’ll put our knowledge of digital marketing and content best practices to work, and get you noticed online.

Return this online form, and we’ll get back to you promptly. You can also follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to stay up-to-date with content marketing trends.

Reference Sources:

https://www.nngroup.com/articles/pinball-pattern-search-behavior/

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/search-trends-2020-yext-researches-what-customers-are-looking-for-throughout-the-year-300962689.html

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35624?hl=en

Share


Recent Posts

Sheetal Pinto - 9/24/2020 06:00

You're staring at a blank page. You and your team want the best content for your landing page. It must engage. It must convert. It must really stand out. But most of all, it must resonate with your audience. So, where do you begin? Here's a tip: The best copy on landing pages reads like a customer wrote it. "This pain relief cream made my shoulder pain disappear. I slept like a baby!' is your customer writing your landing page headline. It will work much better than, "Try our quick, effective pain relief cream—buy now for 10% off".

Sheetal Pinto - 9/17/2020 06:00

When you started your business, you may have begun with a business plan. Over time, your business plan may have changed and adapted as you learned more, and the marketplace changed. The current pandemic has definitely required many businesses to pivot on their strategies. Your content strategy must be dynamic, just like your business plan. Whether you’ve been creating content for many years or are just starting to invest in content marketing, you need to start with a solid foundation.

Sheetal Pinto - 9/3/2020 05:45

Key Considerations and How to Decide 

Creating quality content to keep your SEO strategy on target and to provide relevant information to your audience can get overwhelming. Content is vital to your overall marketing plan. You need content as much as you need customers. At some point, you may think that you need to outsource your content creation. Do you hire an in-house copywriter? Should you sign on with a content agency? Both options have pros and cons. Let’s take a look at some of the considerations to think about to make the decision that is right for your business.

Sheetal Pinto - 8/27/2020 06:00

Relevance is the KEY to Writing High Ranking SEO Content

If your customer could only see the title of your last blog post, what would she know about your brand? Would the title alone be compelling enough to make her click through to find out more? Is the title clear and descriptive? Would a stranger know what the text was about without any other context? This idea of context and clarity is important to think about when you’re creating content for your website, blog, and social channels. Remember that Google, like other machines, cannot read—it can only try to guess what your content is about, from the way you lead into it—with titles, meta descriptions, headers, and keywords. Experienced SEO copywriters know how to help Google guess correctly. 

Sheetal Pinto - 8/20/2020 06:00

Here's How the Best of the Best Do It!

Content marketing is what we now call “storytelling”. Going back to the art of storytelling, think of the greats—and we don’t mean just Hans Christian Anderson, Enid Blyton, Grimm Brothers, and other master storytellers. Think of grandma, and grandpa, and Nanny Pat, and Bill the bartender, and Joe at the car repair shop, and Bob the barber, and so many others who told the most interesting stories you still fondly recall. What made them so interesting? They talked about everything from man’s first steps on the moon to today’s town gossip to why brussels sprouts are worth trying to where you can catch the best fish and how. You gave your ear to these storytellers because you trusted them to have your best interests at heart. And that, is the key to content marketing. Tell a good story but also in a way that instill trust in the audience. That’s what the best content marketers do.

Sheetal Pinto - 8/13/2020 15:07

Your In-House Assets are a Goldmine!

Even if you’re new to SEO, you know that search engine algorithms and ranking systems look for new content online. Creating content on a regular basis can seem like a daunting task and getting that content blueprint or content calendar in place can take forever. Even if you hired the best copywriters in North America, they still need the themes, topics, and ideas to come from you. Most business owners don’t realize this—you could be sitting on a treasure box of content within your company. If you are struggling with finding new ideas for content, stop trying to reinvent the wheel. Use the assets you have. Think of it a little bit like your favourite foods, many of which were created from leftovers that some creative cook decided to use instead of throwing out!

Sheetal Pinto - 8/6/2020 06:00

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. A video must be worth 100,000 or more words by that rate. Video is a powerful medium that lets your business tell a story. Consumers respond to video. Google reports that watch time for shopping-related videos grew by 5X over two years. A Google-commissioned study found that “YouTube reaches more 18 to 49 year-olds in an average week than all cable TV networks combined.” Video can be an important part of your content strategy. But it needs some support with written content. Meaningful, keyword-rich text descriptions can help increase viewership and sharing for your online videos.

Sheetal Pinto - 7/30/2020 06:00

How to Create a Case Study for Your Website

A case study is a unique content marketing tool that can be used effectively to drive leads and sales. In a B2B Marketing survey, case studies were found to be the most effective content format. Not surprising at all, because we know that everyone loves a great story! While there is so much emphasis on storytelling in online content, case studies are not as common as blog posts or video in content strategy. Let’s talk about case studies and how to write one that works for your business.

Sheetal Pinto - 7/23/2020 00:00

 Google is the most popular search engine, capturing over 70% of search market share and over 85% of mobile search. It’s used for entertainment, business, education, medical care, and more by millions of people. And yet, many people don’t realize Google’s full power as a search engine. Google has many different ways to provide users with relevant search results. As a content marketer, you should know how to search effectively and adapt your SEO strategy keeping in mind Google’s power users.

Sheetal Pinto - 7/16/2020 06:00

“How-to" content is a popular motif for almost every industry. Readers enjoy these online tutorials and educational learning materials. Google reported back in 2015 that 91% of smartphone users turned to their device while completing tasks and called these “micro-moments”. An estimated 100 million hours of “how-to content” was consumed in North America alone that year. In 2020, the number is, undoubtedly, a lot higher. Consumers want to know how to do things and want to do themselves or at least understand the process. Digital marketing can tap into that need by producing content to solve problems. Taking advantage of these micro-moments through “how-to” content can deliver significant results for your branding and visibility.