Content Analysis and Keyword Research in 2019 for SEO
Do you really need one, two, or three pieces of software to analyze if your content is good enough for Google?
Content analysis software has been booming in the past few years, thanks to Google’s insistence that websites put up useful and in-depth content for users.
A decade or so ago, this wasn’t such a big issue because Google was still focused then on delivering content that mechanically matched keywords for instance SEO Company New York. The story has changed drastically when Google began rolling out updates that stamped out fluff from the Web.
What’s this software anyway?
Content analysis software provides additional information about your content that you may have missed prior to posting it. The information that you get from this software can then be used to make better decisions about your content in general.
With this software you can also identify specific issues that are actionable, meaning, you can change parts of the content before publishing the said content to give your post a better chance of being indexed, ranked, and subsequently surfaced by Google. Ultimately, this is our goal: for Google to surface your content because it satisfies the search engine’s criteria for good content.
These programs work on the basis of patterns. Of course, there are going to be limitations on what it can do. For example, content analysis software can’t really understand the intention of the user who is searching for a piece of content, and the intent of the writer who created the content in the first place.
These are gray areas. The use of different keywords when engaging in search will results in slightly or sometimes wildly different results depending on the type of information already available on the Web.
But still, you can get a lot of good insights from these software as they usually aggregate and analyze the top ten or top twenty results for a given keyword, and does all the footwork for you.
Data aggregation allows you to see in one go how the top rankers for a search term were able to do it. The fun part here is trying to replicate the success of older pieces of content.
Should you use content analysis software?
For all its current limitations, you should definitely use this software to improve your content, especially if you are aiming for less competitive longtail keywords. Of course, it has been established that it’s nearly impossible to rank higher than really big pages that have had amassed millions of views. But do remember that these pages are usually surfaced for highly competitive and general keywords, and not the more specific and less competitive keyword groups. This should give you a clue as to how to increase your traffic by creating content for highly specific queries.
Do patterns reveal everything?
As with everything in SEO, no. There are definitely observable patterns when you aggregate search results for specific search terms, but we can’t just correlate the patterns in content with the fact that they are at the top. As you may already know, SERPs are affected by more than just content.
Among the top signals that affect ranking are: freshness of the content, positioning, image alt text, etc. There are more than one hundred signals used by RankBrain to judge if a page or piece of content will go up on the top spots for search results, so it’s best to take the patterns that you see with a grain of salt. This is also a good idea so you’re not disappointed when you fail to replicate results by merely following the patterns that software has brought back.
Content in general is ranked best when people flock to it and find it useful. But there are other elements at work, too. For example, the relevant links that you put in your content will also have an impact. People who link to your content because it is authoritative will definitely raise the trust factor of your website for a particular topic.
Boosting the user experience by making the content in-depth and by adding images and video to make the reading experience more interactive and productive is also a good idea.
Now bring all of these elements and tweaks and you now have an idea of how content can end up in the top spot of a Google search result. Ultimately, you have to do more than just the minimum. Google now has you in its radar – now what? What else can your content offer to the users?
How does text analysis help?
Textual analysis of content for the most part, can show you if you are overusing keywords or if you are not using the target keyword phrases in the correct frequency. Google has long reeled back the importance of keywords, but they still do use it to find new content.
Keywords definitely have to appear on the heading, title, and the content – but never in the volume that would make the content unreadable. Ten years ago this was a huge problem for search engines: content producers were stuffing their content with lots of keywords, and the search engine companies didn’t know any better.
They were inadvertently surfacing content from mills that didn’t pay attention to quality. People complained about the quality of the search results that they were getting. This is why Google finally put its foot down and started making content quality a more important indicator instead of just keyword volume.
And then there’s grammar. Content analysis software can also help you check your content for errors. Grammar alone will not help you improve ranking, but it will improve user experience. No one likes reading content that doesn’t even look right. Grammar plays a huge part in conveying the message clearly to the intended audience. Make sure that all your old and new content has proper grammar.
How can you maximize content analysis software?
Take all of the data that you can from the software’s results, and instead of just matching information with the content that you want to write, it’s vital that you understand that Google has moved on from this simplistic matching pattern. Instead, use the data to think of content that will respond to intent. In short, what types of questions can your content answer?
To better understand how this is working, you can definitely check out what your competitors are doing. It is likely that their content is now being surfaced by Google near the top: with the questions and answers pane. These questions are often shown right after the first result, and the paid listings. This is a huge space for marketers because if you are able to answer people’s questions here, they’re going to jump to the larger page to see the rest of your content.
Specificity of information is definitely an advantage as people tend to ask very specific things when they’re on the Web. The tricky part is to understand how people are phrasing their questions so your content is there when they need it. Google’s AI is still improving at this point, but there’s definitely a huge move to surfacing answers for specific queries so search results are more useful and ‘portable’ especially when people are using voice assisted technologies to search the Web.