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This article was published for Search Engine Journal in March 2019. This is an abstract. The complete article can be found here.

Pushing the Frontiers of SEO & Content

Let’s talk content and on-page SEO — on steroids. Let’s talk about cutting-edge SEO research that can truly transform your ranking success.

Our discussions over the last few years have been focused on editorial plans, query intent, and user engagement.

While they are surely a part of the equation (and I am a deep believer of content quality, avoiding SEO spam and creating useful answers), we have forgotten an important part of getting content right: data-driven decisions.

I want to reinvent your definition of keyword difficulty. I want to reinvent your understanding of competitive analysis. It is time to truly leverage the latest SEO tools for your content creation.

Understanding Page 1 Is the Most Important Ingredient of SEO: Not all keywords are created equal.

Creating a blog post of 1,000 words is certainly a good SOP and an efficient way to brief your content writers. However, it is most likely not the right advice for the keyword for which you are trying to rank.

Different query types need different content. This means that Page 1 will look radically different whether you are looking for “SEO blog”, “buy CBD oil online”, “time tracking software” or “underground techno club Berlin”.

I want to invite you to study Page 1 and truly understand what content type, content length, and keyword frequency Google would like to see.

To achieve SEO success, your keyword research and content planning need an update.

Using Statistical Relevance to Understand Successful Websites

The last two years have seen a rise of tools that are doing keyword specific competitive research for you. Statistical analysis has never been easier — or faster.

New SEO tools use statistical analysis to understand what all those websites on Page 1 have in common – and for which ranking factors your website is deficient. You now get a list of statistical relevant optimizations to make.

The difference to a normal crawler (like Screaming Frog) is that the correlational SEO tools do not display a fixed set of hard-coded recommendations.

Their recommendations are based on the statistical relevance of a factor for your target keywords. It is specific, instead of the “one-size-fits-all” approach of most crawlers.

Instead of telling your team “extend this blog post”, you can now tell them: “Extend this piece by 383 words, two images and one video. Make sure to use the exact match keyword twice in H3 and add the following keywords…” – knowing that it will move the needle, because this is what those websites on Page 1 have in common.

The New Kids on the Blog: The Rise of On-Page SEO Tools

The tools rising in popularity include:

I am not an affiliate of any of these tools, and this analysis is based on my practice of using these tools in my agency work throughout the last two years.

A honorable mention goes to Clearscope which was not included in this article but has a great on-page SEO editor as well.

This article was published for Search Engine Journal in March 2019. This is an abstract. The complete article can be found here.


Viola Eva
Viola is passionate about digital entrepreneurship, flow, and mindful marketing. As a marketing consultant and SEO, she has worked with clients ranging from individual digital entrepreneurs to software companies to multi-national corporates and government institutions. She is a speaker, educator, and specialist on all things SEO.
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