For the longest time, e-commerce businesses relied on content marketing to gain presence online. This comes from advice given by online marketers and fellow entrepreneurs.
But is there any merit to this claim?
In this post, we aim to show you 11 reasons why we think content marketing is still the king of SEO strategies to this day. And to get our point across even harder, we’ve backed them up with case studies and/or examples to leave no room for doubt.
With that said, why don’t we go ahead and talk about why content marketing is important today.
Why content marketing is important
Reason #1: Content Marketing Aids Organic Search
Improved performance in organic search is probably the biggest reason why you should invest in content marketing.
Google will do its best to show people the best results whenever they perform a search. So as long as you have high-tier content and it’s related to the query made, your content will always show up.
In a case study published on robbierichards.com, it showed how a single post from a drone company managed to score 20,314 organic page views.
The said post managed to rank for relevant terms such as “how to fly a quadcopter”.
The post also showed up in position zero (the very top of the SERPs; above the first result) for certain search terms.
The post took three months to hit the first page of Google. And by the fifth month, it finally took over the first position. It took one more month to get 20,314 organic page views.
Takeaway: Not only do you need to create high-quality posts, but you also have to do some research beforehand. To make your post more relevant, you should have the right keywords and optimize your site for on-page ranking factors. That way, you can use content marketing to rank organically in the SERPs.
Reason #2: Content Marketing Gets People to Come Back
Getting someone to read a post you published once is good. But do you know what’s better? To have that person stop by your site unprompted.
Ideally, you want people to go to your site even if they’re not looking for a solution. If visiting your posts becomes a habit for them, it will only do wonders for your site’s overall performance.
Express Writers credits its 90,000+ visits per month to its consistent publishing of high-quality posts every week.
The blog’s growth started when it implemented a content strategy back in 2016. In the beginning, it published four or five posts a week. About a year later, that changed to one to two posts a week. And while the number of posts published went down, the quality went up.
This resulted in developing a following.
And due to the rising number of visits that Express Writers gets, more people get exposed to the services that the company offers.
Takeaway: If you want people to learn more about the products or services that you offer, you’ll need people to drop by your site regularly. Your content could give them a reason to go back. Even if they don’t convert right away, they’ll surely remember your name when the need arises.
Reason #3: Content Marketing Promotes Brand Loyalty
The more people flock to your e-commerce site, the more they’ll become loyal to you and what you represent. And the most common reason why people enter a site is for the content it delivers.
To deliver the right content, you’ll need to do some research. Not just keyword research, mind you. But actual research on what kind of content your users want to see.
Take the case of AXA, one of the leaders in the insurance market. They partnered with an online marketing firm to understand what resonates with their audience.
Engaging their users also helped AXA build trust and rapport with their audience. By having its fingers on the pulse of its customers and followers, AXA was also able to make decisions based on its performance.
Research conducted by Bain & Company identifies brand loyalty as a motivator for customers, with loyal customers spending more on items than one-time visitors.
Takeaway: Build customer loyalty by posting content that your audience is looking for. The longer your customers stick with your brand, the more likely they’ll buy more products from you. Their average spending also increases. So it’s worth publishing content consistently.
Reason #4: Content Marketing Improves Brand Reputation
As you gain more and more followers, you should see an improvement in your brand reputation. Why?
Because building a brand is all about trust. And how do you gain the trust of your audience?
That’s right — by publishing noteworthy content. If you continue to publish content that’s both informative and factual, then people are going to trust your brand. And with that comes a solid brand reputation.
But what if other sites post negative content about your brand? Can content marketing still help?
This is exactly what this case study published on Search Engine Watch confirms.
A client hired an SEO company to improve its reputation online. Aside from optimizing their client’s website, the company strategically published content on different types of sites to bury all the negative content that the team found.
Thanks to their strategy, the SEO company managed to transform 90% of the top 20 results for the brand into positive content with the remaining 10% being neutral posts.
Takeaway: Content has an effect on your brand reputation. You can use content marketing to control how the public perceives your brand.
Reason #5: Content Marketing Gains Audience Trust
The subject of trust was briefly touched upon earlier. Let’s dive a bit deeper.
As this Stackla post explains, direct-to-consumer brands are frequent users of content marketing. But not just any type of content. They now make use of experiential content.
Experiential content is much more subtle than your typical copy. And in some cases, they serve as an accompaniment to a product or service. This form of content aims to educate or entertain the audience in the hopes of earning their trust.
One such example is MEL Magazine. This online publication is produced by the same people behind Dollar Shave Club.
Dollar Shave Club started MEL so they can connect with their customers on a deeper level. It aims to help them become their best selves by giving advice written from the male perspective.
Takeaway: Earning trust requires online businesses to connect with their audience on a deeper level. And the best way to do so would be to interact through relevant content. You should communicate with your customers through your posts so they walk away learning something new after every site visit.
Reason #6: Content Marketing Gives You Social Media Exposure
If your audience likes what you have to say, then there’s a good chance that your posts would find their way to social media.
Having content that is worth sharing gives you another platform to gain exposure. You’ll no longer have to rely on organic search alone.
What makes social media even better is the fact that people share your posts with their friends, co-workers, followers, and family. That means you get the benefit of being promoted by someone other people trust.
And you can do more than just have people share your content on social media. You can include social media in your content marketing campaign.
Some brands started using their social media accounts to connect with their audience. Rather than just sharing their posts and product pages, they’re now focused on posting content that’s designed specifically for whichever social media platform they’re on.
E-Consultancy has a list of clever examples of brands maximizing their social media activity to promote their brand.
Takeaway: You should incorporate social media into your content marketing campaign. Not only does this give you another platform to grow your business, but it also helps you engage with potential customers who may not have heard of you before.
The same way that people share posts on social media, site owners share posts they love on their websites. And when they link back to you, you earn a backlink.
For those who don’t know, backlinks are important because it’s one of the factors that Google takes into account when assessing a site. If you have a lot of high-quality backlinks, your chances of ranking higher in the SERPs skyrocket.
Take note: Your backlinks need to come from highly authoritative sites to be effective.
Sure Oak published a case study that shed light on getting .edu backlinks. Backlinks from sites with the .edu domain extension are more powerful than .com sites in some cases because only educational institutions can apply for these. That means most (if not all) .edu sites are legitimate sources.
That’s the reason why Sure Oak went out of its way to get backlinks from .edu sites on behalf of their clients.
Takeaway: Continue publishing great content so that high-quality sites link back to you. When you earn backlinks, your site traffic will increase because your posts would appear more on search engines.
Reason #8: Content Marketing Increase Your Conversions
Of course, you can also use content marketing to build pages that help your sales process run smoother.
The most common example would be having an FAQ page on your site. This page gives your potential customers additional information to help them make informed decisions or ease their minds about your product or service.
And when you optimize your FAQ pages, the results might surprise you.
Search Engine Land reports that adding FAQ schema offers a few benefits of content marketing. These include improved organic clickthrough rate (CTR) and improved presence in the SERPs.
And you don’t have to stick to FAQ pages. Detailed guides would also be helpful for users. You can also do instructional videos, infographics, how-to guides, and more.
The important this is that you add content that would encourage users to buy from you.
If you’re selling a product that’s too spec-heavy, for example, having resources on your site might alleviate any frustration your customer might experience. Again this would have an impact on customer trust and confidence in your ability as a business to deliver.
Takeaway: Having pages that guide the customer through the sales process encourages them to go through with the purchase. This translates to improved sales.
Reason #9: Content Marketing Aids Lead Generation
Do you want to gain more leads for your company? Content marketing can help with that.
A case study by Kuno Creative explains how this works. In the post, it’s explained how the team managed to increase their client’s qualified conversion by 283% thanks to lead generation.
A huge part of its campaign centered around content creation.
Kuno created blog posts, guides, and e-books. Users who engaged with these resources were then targeted with gated content. This proved to be a successful way of gathering new leads for their client.
Visitors who saw the product’s site page were given the chance to request a demo.
This only shows that when you combine content marketing with lead generation tactics, the end result would greatly benefit the site owner.
However, it’s important to point out that the lead generation content that you publish should be relevant for the user. It should add value. After all, you’re asking the lead to give up his or her personal information. They should get something of value in return.
Takeaway: Combine content marketing with lead generation tactics to improve your numbers. Offering quality content in exchange for the lead’s personal information is a tested strategy that yields great results.
Reason #10: Content Marketing Bypass Ad Blockers
If you’re still relying on ads to promote your site, you’re simply wasting money. According to Global Web Index, 47% of users around the globe use some sort of ad blocker today.
And should ads become more aggressive, it’s highly possible that the rate of people installing ad blockers would rise even further.
But here’s the thing:
While ads do get blocked, great content will always be welcome. People don’t want to be targeted. That’s one of the reasons why people are annoyed by ads. But people who need access to information will always seek out content.
A case study by Boostnet pits paid ads against organic content. And while the results got muddled toward the end, it does show that content was responsible for a 40% organic reach and a 78% change toward brand sentiment. The paid Facebook campaign generated 4,000 new fans for their client.
Takeaway: Use content marketing to bypass the effects that ad blockers might have on your paid ads. Or if you need to run ads, use your content in combination with ad spending to generate better results.
Reason #11: Content Marketing Gives You Niche Authority
Brands have to be experts in their niche. Otherwise, why would people support you, right?
And the best way to show off your knowledge would be through published posts. You need to create content that will show people just how much you know about the niche you’re in.
Having authority is important for any kind of online business. This is even true for affiliate sites. Since affiliate sites typically focus on a single niche, the marketers need to sound like they know what they’re talking about. That’s why they would often choose a niche that they’re versed in.
One niche site that generated over $690,000 under two years placed emphasis on generating fantastic, niche-centric content to accomplish its goals.
But while having niche content is good, you should also implement a content strategy that’ll make sure that your posts rise above your competition.
The Skyscraper Technique (from Backlinko) is a great place to start as any. At the risk of oversimplifying the process, it’s basically finding competitors in your niche that have great content and publishing a post with more value.
If done right, you should find your post outranking the competition.
Takeaway: Write and publish posts in your niche so people would recognize you as an authority figure in your field of expertise. This will increase the trust between you and your audience.
How important is content marketing? Here’s a short recap.
- It helps you with organic search.
- It gives people a reason to visit your site again.
- It inspires people to be loyal to your brand.
- It increases your reputation online.
- It lets you build trust with your audience.
- It gets you on social media platforms.
- It generates backlinks for your site.
- It increases your conversions.
- It helps with lead generation.
- It bypasses ad blockers.
- It established you as an authority figure in your niche.