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What is the connection between SEO and content marketing?

If you’ve ever researched content marketing, you’ve likely found yourself also heading down the SEO rabbit hole. And the same applies to SEO. As two areas of digital marketing that are so closely intertwined, it’s hard to find one without the other these days. So, what is the connection between SEO and content marketing? We’ve covered all you need to know below.

Table of contents

  1. How is SEO related to content marketing?
    i. What is SEO?
    ii. What is content marketing?
  2. What is the connection between SEO and content marketing?
    i. Keywords and content: the perfect pairing
    ii. Building bridges with clever linking
    iii. Creating the right flow
  3. Do you need good content marketing for good SEO?

How is SEO related to content marketing?

SEO and content marketing are part of a broader umbrella of digital marketing tools and techniques that agencies, copywriters, and businesses use every day. It’s probably a clever combination of SEO and content marketing that helped you find this blog post in the first place.

If you use Google, Bing, or any other search engine daily, you’ve already seen reaching benefits that SEO and content marketing can provide – even if you don’t know it yet.

What is SEO?

Search Engine Optimisation is a technical marketing tool that directly impacts where your business or brand lands on search engine platforms.

SEO is used to directly enhance the quality of traffic to your website, bringing up the number of visitors and encouraging more conversions. SEO is typically divided into three sub-categories: technical, on-site, and off-site.

What is content marketing?

On the other hand, content marketing refers to the vehicle you use to get SEO where it needs to go.

Your entire website is made up of content. From blog posts to product descriptions, the writing on your homepage, to what you say in your ‘about us’ section.

Websites need words to convey what they want visitors to do, and visitors need words to understand what your brand is and what it does.

Image of someone typing on a keyboard - What is the connection between SEO and content marketing - Copify blog

What is the connection between SEO and content marketing?

If you think of SEO as the core of your strategy, content marketing is the packaging surrounding that strategy necessary to get your optimisation in the right places.

Instead of separate entities, SEO and content marketing are entwined processes needed to bring visitors to your website, improve brand awareness, and encourage familiarity with what you do and how you do it.

What’s the main difference between content marketing and SEO strategy?

While you can have content marketing without SEO, it’s difficult to have SEO without content marketing. Content itself is a must to get your website past Google’s bots and ensure your platform is usable for your visitors. A website stuffed full of keywords with no real information, valuable guidance and helpful writing is one that no one can benefit from.

Keywords and content: the perfect pairing

Keywords are an essential and integral part of SEO, but in a vacuum, they can’t help you climb the rankings on search engine results pages (also known as SERPs).

Keyword strategies are the first step towards creating content that is valuable in multiple ways. Firstly, for searchers looking for something your brand can provide. Secondly, for search engines looking to populate their platforms with valuable, practical information for their users.

By carrying out keyword research, you’re able to create content that doesn’t just sound good and make your website look packed with information. That content also helps potential customers to find your business, get to know your brand, and discover why you might be the right fit for your specific need.

Whether you’re an online store, local café or international corporation, the result of keyword research and good content is the same.

Building bridges with clever linking

Another benefit of having a website filled with high-quality, brand-friendly content is the ability to link build. As another key factor in SEO, bringing authority to your website is key to getting it in front of the right people. The more high-authority domains your website is connected to, the better it is for your platform.

How is SEO related to content writing when you’re building those links?

Minimal content means you have less chance to build those links naturally. This, in turn, means that your website is less enjoyable for your visitors and less appealing to search engines too. The more quality content, the better your opportunity to link build in practical ways.

Creating the right flow

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User experience and ease of use are two key concepts that top the list for SEO.

While the behind-the-scenes sitemap management, mobile reactiveness and other under-the-hood mechanisms don’t directly involve content, that doesn’t mean the quality of the text on your website isn’t just as important to improving the overall experience.

Using headings, breaking up long bodies of text and providing information in the right place at the right time all help with flow. While the behind-the-scenes stuff helps your business rise through the rankings, the content on your website plays a role in ensuring your website is enjoyable to read and has the correct information that searchers are looking for.

Do you need good content marketing for good SEO?

The big question for content: is it all that important when it comes to SEO?

A few years ago, many agencies and businesses would have said no. Keyword stuffing was a common tactic to scale those rankings, leaving websites packed with random words and less-than-perfect grammar in their wake. But in today’s modern world of sophisticated search engine algorithms, great content is king when it comes to making the most of your SEO.

Google and similar search engines actively seek out high-quality content on websites to provide users with a better experience.

Thin, low-quality content can actively harm your rankings. That means the quality of your writing, the cohesiveness of your content and the volume of valuable copy you provide is integral to SEO success.

Long-form content like guides, blog posts and general information is incredibly valuable to search engines. Not only do they provide an organic opportunity for keywords and link building, but they also provide the information that searchers are after. That makes your brand an authority, which in turn keeps you near the top of those search results.

The takeaway? Combine great content and a successful SEO strategy, and you’re on the right track for success.

✏️  Read more about SEO in our SEO Basics series.


Header image: John Schnobrich

Embedded images: Alizée Baudez, UX Indonesia  

Harriet Swartout-Phipson

Harriet is a 20-something Digital Marketer/Creative Copywriter based in not-so-sunny North Somerset. Her passions include writing, for business and pleasure, as well as blogging and video games.

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