One of my favorite ways to get a boost in traffic is to improve the content I already have. As you’re already getting exposure / ranking for a topic, you are in a sense you’re essentially leveraging what you’ve already built.
Results tend to show faster, and it’s also easier to improve your current content then it is to create new content. I’m not the first person to notice this however. Neil Patel said in a post (undated); “When you tell Google your content is new, you’ll get a spike in traffic that will make the tiny amount of work required well worth it.”
In this post I’ll show you simple and easy ways to improve your content.
How to find your content improvement opportunities.
If you’ve already got a content piece you are trying to improve, you could skim over this.
In this video I cover my method for finding opportunities on your own site.
Now that we know how to find the opportunities, let’s jump into improving the content to get more organic traffic (which is the by-product) of awesome content.
Add a story to the intro
If you’ve ever outsourced content, you know that some of the stuff can seem incredibly generic and impersonal. That is easy to change though, by simply adding an intro sharing your own personal experiences, and why/how that impacts what you’re about to write.
I start with this first as I actually I find it pretty easy to do for nearly any piece.
Improve Your Area ‘Above The Fold’
Load your blog post on a mobile device. Is it an AWESOME page?
The ‘above the fold’ section is the area of your page that users first see when they load your page — in the first visible area of screen. This area has a huge impact on user experience and engagement as right then when it loads, in milliseconds, that user decides whether they will check out the page further or go back.
Mobile is crucial here as the majority of your web traffic will be mobile. If you’re doing Facebook ads to your content, as I cover in The Sizz Method, damn near 100% of your traffic from that source may be mobile.
Here’s a before and after look at a page I optimized.
The before picture on the left is nothing more then ‘default wordpress’ content. There’s a featured image, then the title, then body text. HOW BASIC?
If we want to win the content game we have to do better then that!
On the right is fairly simply layout that was built with Thrive Architect. We’ve got the title overlaying a background section, and then right below a few featured points. That catches and holds attention far better then the generic WordPress formatting of most pages.
Answer Frequently Asked Questions
On every topic there will be ‘frequently asked questions’ that come up repeatedly. Answering these is valuable to your audience.
Even if you answered these in the content originally, more FAQ’s always come up after you click publish.
Simply add a ‘frequently asked questions’ section to any content piece then provide your insight.
Expert tip: link to other sections on the page, or other pieces of content in the FAQ.
Add A Table of Contents
A looooong piece of content is difficult for a user to skim through on a mobile device… or maybe they will see a section they want to jump to.
Table of contents sections near the top of content boost engagement.
They also have the added benefit of adding additional links to the search engine.
Create Video Content
When you review a piece of aged content, you’ll often think “damn I’ve got soooo much more to say about this but rewriting it all would suck”. That’s why video is awesome!
You can provide more insight and share more knowledge, on platform that is more engaging and boost your content.
Pick a section within the content body, and create a video to embed there.
This will keep users on the page longer, and get them to click around to your other content.
It doesn’t need to be rocket science… simple wins. A simple screen recording using a tool like loom gets the job done nice and effectively. I do suggest making a cover image for the video that fits well with the rest of your page.
All in; you can have a good video with cover image in 20 minutes, tops!
Add ‘Content Add-on Boxes’
The next ones are all small elements which are put into the content and formatted into stand-out sections that are digestible on skim
I create these using Thrive Themes Content Boxes, but you could use other page builders as well!
I typically sick these inside of, or below, a section on the page and use formatting to clearly show they are an ‘additional’ piece of insight.
Give Expert Tips
Everyone likes a tip, but sometime it doesn’t fit into context. That’s fine… maybe even better.
Give it a content box like this.
Share Insider Secrets
Much like the expert tips, you can share an insider secret. This is particularly useful if you’ve got actual hands-on experience with what you are publishing about that others don’t know!
Highlight Pros and content
While pros and cons are typically associated with product review based content, you can use them elsewhere in your content. Maybe your publishing a piece on an idea, or an instructional how to… like how to speed up your wordpress site. You could give the pros and cons of following your method.
You could also add pros and cons to expert tips; damn near anything.
Give Your ‘2 cents’
We’ve all got ours on everything. Take a piece of content that was outsourced and drop your opinion on each section. It’s real easy to do and can easily add a few hundred words.
Entirely Redraft The Content Starting With Headings
Here’s a big kahuna.. and it also takes more time then everything I’ve listed, which is why I went last.
Open up a ‘new post’ in WordPress and start redrafting the post using new headlines. Use headings that are based on the readers discovery process or questions they ask. This is a topic that could be deep dived entirely.
Then once you have all your heading in place, copy and past bits of your original post into the places they would fit into on the new draft.
I find this usually helps me fill out about 50% of the new draft. For the remaining 50% you’ll need to write it out yourself, but still much easier then starting from scratch.
When you do this, it important that the new content remains on the existing URL for SEO purposes. There’s 2 ways of doing this…
#1 Copying the source code of your new draft post and pasting it into the source code of your original post.
#2 Deleting the old post and then changing the URL of the new post to the exact same as the old one.
The biggest (and easiest) returns lie in the momentum you’ve already got.
Take a look at your old content and use these strategies to improve it!