Evergreen content - What, why, and how?

By Christy Hill — Tuesday, August 18th, 2015 at 9:00am
evergreen

What is evergreen content?

Content creation is an essential part of a good marketing strategy. Publishing great content will result in more visits to your website, more people sharing your content on social media, more subscribers to your mailing list and (hopefully) more inquiries from your prospects. But creating content takes a lot of time.  This is why “evergreen” content should be an important part of your content strategy. What is evergreen content, you ask? Simply put, evergreen content is content that is constantly relevant and stands the test of time. A reader will find evergreen content just as useful a year from now as they do five minutes from now. This type of content may require more of an investment up front, but it will continue to pay off long after it is first published.

The benefits of evergreen content

When deciding what type of blog post to write, you may choose to write about trending topics and current events, or you may decide to write about a topic that is constantly relevant and timeless. Blog posts based on current trends have a short shelf life. They will attract a lot of traffic and social shares when they are first published then they will become irrelevant and fade into obscurity. Evergreen posts will continue to attract traffic over time. Once the social sharing phase is over, the majority of your blog traffic will come from search engine results, so having topics that are always relevant will continue to generate leads long after you hit “publish”- in fact, evergreen posts have the potential to become even more popular as time passes! This means evergreen posts are the perfect inbound content.

Evergreen content is invaluable to the content marketer. It will likely take longer to create than most content as it needs to be detailed, well-written and heavily researched in order to be credible and remain useful, but because of this quality, it tends to rank very well in search engines over time. Since these posts are more easily found, they will continue to drive traffic to your website with little additional effort on your part. This content can be linked to and referenced long after it is originally published ensuring you will always have something to share. This doesn’t mean you won’t have to do a little maintenance and clean up from time-to-time- you should continue to revisit your evergreen content every few months to make sure none of the content needs updating.

Creating evergreen content

So, how should you go about creating content that is “evergreen”? The biggest challenge with creating timeless content is that it often feels like it’s all been done before. Finding topics that are still original enough to make them worth sharing isn’t always easy. Identifying your existing evergreen content is a good place to get started. Consult your analytics to see which of your posts generate the most leads consistently. Next, examine your keyword metrics and incoming search terms. This should give you a good idea of the types of content you should be auditing and adding to. You should also take a look at your most valuable customer segment to see which types of content they are most interested in, then use that information to create content that is genuinely helpful. Knowing how to target the right user at the right time with the right content is the key to having successful evergreen content.

Some examples of topics that do well as evergreen content are:

  • How-to guides

  • Product reviews or testimonials

  • Lists of resources and curated content

  • Answers to frequently asked questions

  • User tips

  • Historical information

  • Definitions of terms and phrases

Evergreen content becomes even more effective when combined with a strong SEO strategy. Make sure to use relevant keywords in order to optimize the content for search engines. You should also be linking to your evergreen articles in other content you create- never underestimate the power of internal linking! Don’t forget to highlight these posts on your homepage to guarantee they are seen by new site visitors. This can be achieved by creating a “Top Posts” or “Training Guide” section of your blog with links to your best content. Doing this will also ensure these posts are not buried in all your new blog posts.

Remember the best content strategy should involve a mix of topical posts and evergreen posts. You want to make sure you stay on top of current events as well as establish yourself as a trusted resource and knowledge base. Think of evergreen content as the backbone of your blog, if you know how to leverage it properly it will pay off again and again!

What about you? What are some of the topics on which you write evergreen content?

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