Helô de Castro
Your Guide To Creating Evergreen Content
By Amine Rahal, entrepreneur & writer. Amine is the CEO of IronMonk, a digital marketing agency specializing in SEO & CMO at Regal Assets, an IRA company.
Aug 27, 2021,07:15am EDT Forbes Press Releases from Forbes Staff
Unlike trending content, evergreen content still holds its value years after its publication. While momentarily popular content can create a buzz for a week or two, only evergreen articles or videos can bring an audience back again and again.
The return on evergreen content is astronomical compared to content that merely captures a trend. If you’re serious about creating quality content that generates a high ROI, you’re going to have to focus on producing evergreen material.
As the owner of two digital marketing firms, I’ve helped countless clients develop evergreen content that improves their SEO performance and brings in long-term organic traffic. In this article, I’ll explain what evergreen content is and how you can produce more of it to stay relevant over longer periods of time.
What Is Evergreen Content?
Content that never goes out of style or fades into irrelevance can be described as “evergreen." For example, content that describes the fundamentals of creating an awesome infographic is evergreen. This is because audiences, at least for the foreseeable future, will always be interested in creating infographics.
A counterexample could be a guide about how to set up a Vine account. Since Vine was a short-lived video hosting platform that only existed between 2013 and 2017, there is no longer any real interest in how to go about creating an account. This type of content may have performed well while Vine was still operational but would have fallen into obscurity after the service was discontinued.
Certain types of content are naturally better suited for evergreen material than others. For instance, podcasts tend not to be evergreen — rather, they enjoy a short buzz before being replaced with new episodes. Whereas infographics and long-form blog posts tend to offer much more evergreen value. Other examples of evergreen content include:
• Educational checklist articles (“10 Things to Avoid While Cooking Over a Grill”)
• Case studies (“How a Chicago Mother Went From Bankrupt to Millionaire”)
• Comprehensive guides (“The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Your Fastball”)
• Questions and answers (“Your Questions Answered: FAQs About Flu Season”)
Tips For Building An Evergreen Content Strategy
Below, I’ve outlined my strategy for creating evergreen content that brings audiences back year after year. I’ll use blog articles as the given medium of content delivery, but this formula could equally be applied to videos and other forms of content.
1. Find The Right Keywords
Evergreen content starts with evergreen keywords. Using an SEO research tool of your choice — typically, these include Ahrefs, Moz or SEMrush — look up general keywords that you’ve brainstormed that broadly relate to your topic or theme.
The metric you want to pay attention to here is “Search Volume," which, for evergreen keywords, should generate at least 1,000 searches monthly. If keywords are consistently bringing in over 1,000 unique search queries, you can bet that there’s a lasting genuine interest in these search results.
Also, you can click the “Parent Topic” option for each keyword to discover if there are more popular related keywords. These are more likely to have higher search volumes and, therefore, are more likely to be evergreen.
2. Check Google Trends
If you’re undecided about whether a topic is evergreen, search Google Trends for the keyword. If the “Interest over time” chart is a downward slope or is highly seasonal (i.e., interest spiking only during a short period of the year), then these topics likely aren’t evergreen. I recommend focusing on building content whose keywords stick closely to a trendline that isn’t on the decline.
3. Optimize For SEO
Your content could be excellent, but if nobody can find it, it can’t truly be considered evergreen (and if it’s generating zero traffic, it’s more like never green). That’s why all evergreen content has to be well optimized for search engines. Although building backlinks is essential for SEO success, I also recommend the following on-page SEO tips:
• Include target keyword in the title and H2 subheadings
• Link back to the page’s subcategory page
• Do not include paragraphs longer than five visual lines
• Include outbound links to high-authority websites
• Include cited data points wherever possible
• Avoid technical jargon and use plain language wherever possible
• Answer the reader’s search question clearly and directly near the top of the article
4. Update Your Content
A truly evergreen content strategy keeps up with the times. If you published an informational article years ago, but it’s filled with outdated information and data, then it’s not truly evergreen. Periodically revisit your old content and include newer outbound links and recent data points to reflect new developments as time goes on.
Personally, every year or two I like to go back to my old content to include new hyperlinks and remove sections that might have become irrelevant. Then, I acknowledge these changes in the title by adding “(2021 Update)” in the article’s H1 title.
5. Reshare The Content On Social Media
Another great aspect of evergreen content is that it can be reshared and repromoted routinely on your social media channels. Every year, republish your top evergreen content to your social media to spark new interest in and regenerate awareness of the content.
Build Evergreen Content Today
An evergreen tree symbolizes perpetual life. If you’re a content marketer, or simply want to build a winning SEO strategy, your content should also live perpetually.
This doesn’t mean you should forget about building “trendy” content. This type of content also deserves a place in your digital marketing strategy. However, the timelessness of evergreen material will generate a much higher ROI in the long run. This is why I always encourage my clients to start with evergreen when developing their content strategy.