Over the past few years, there’s been a lot of emphasis on fresh content. “Google rewards fresh content.” While quality content that’s fresh has its SEO perks in many cases, it’s not the end-all-be-all of content marketing and SEO. In fact, dedicating some of your time and resources toward the creation of evergreen content may serve you better in the long run.
What is evergreen content?
It’s content that speaks to a foundational aspect or universal truth about the industry you serve or pain points you address. It’s not tied to a time-bound event. It’s not focused on latest trends and fads. It endures the test of time. Maybe it doesn’t last forever, but it’s relevant for at least a few years. The subject matter itself is always relevant, and that’s what makes the content useful.
OK . . . But evergreen is OLD content. Google wants fresh, quality content, right?
To answer this question, let’s look at content as though it’s a delicious meal prepared by your most with-it foodie friend. There will be delicious fresh vegetables and meat. There will also be aged wine and cheese. There’s a place on the content plate for fresh and aged even when it comes to SEO. Here’s how that works.
Think about your expectations in these two Google Seach scenarios.
- When you search for information about a particular annual conference, you probably want the most recent information, right? You need information on the dates, exhibitors, speakers, etc. This scenario is where fresh content wins.
- On the other hand, if you search for tips on how to get the most out of the next conference you attend, you most likely want the best advice and tips — the most relevant information.
Google is smart enough to determine (through its many algorithms) how to best deliver search results in response to your search query.
This post from MOZ.com has some great examples of how you can freshen up ageless content through quality inbound links, engagement, and more. It also discusses how the rate of change to page content can potentially hurt SEO, too.
How fresh is this article? Through patent filings over the years, Google has explored many ways that it might use “freshness” as a ranking signal. Back in 2011, we published a popular Moz Blog post about these “Freshness Factors” for SEO. Following our own advice, this is a brand new update of that article.
Other Ways to Use This Ageless Content
Evergreen content can serve you beyond search engine marketing. When you pay attention to content distribution and promotion, you can routinely share routine content to attract new prospects, move leads through the funnel, as well as educate new customers and employees. Try these ideas to repurpose your evergreen content:
- Use your evergreen materials as the basis of guest posts for authoritative sites in your niche or industry. Be sure to reference this content in the post. Don’t fret over getting dofollow links. While a followed link is a win for SEO, don’t miss out on potential customers who read the blog hosting your post.
- Feature your most popular evergreen assets periodically in your email newsletters.
- Introduce influencers to your always-relevant content. Reach out to them via email and social media and ask if it’s a useful resource they can share with their communities.
- Routinely share it on social media to ensure you reach your newest followers with valuable, educational material.
- When people take the time to share your content on their social media profiles, thank them for the share and like the post. This small act may encourage future sharing — and it’s just good manners.
- Listen for opportunities on social media and forums where you can provide the content as an answer to someone’s question
- Don’t forget to reference your this type of content on other related pages on your website and blog. You can do this by creating call-to-action graphics or by referencing the material in the body copy.
- Consider gating your most popular or most in depth evergreen content. If it’s something valuable, potential leads will “pay” for the content by filling out a form. That gives you prospects and leads to nurture.
- Arm your sales reps with evergreen collateral and materials that they can share with their leads and customers.
Have you taken the time to create evergreen content? What’s holding you back?