Ep 069 One Question, Many Answers

Welcome back to Theory of Content! Continuing on from last week, Joshua and Rebecca are still tackling all your facebag questions. Well… actually they’re tackling all of loyal listener Ellen’s questions today. The two hosts tackle Ellen’s mega email on today’s episode to uncover just why bloggers might experience substantial dips in traffic. 

Before they spill all their SEO wisdom, Joshua has to air out what he hates about Rebecca’s site. What does he hate so much? The fact that he is actually maddened by the outrageous millennial content that Rebecca posts just to showcase the outrageousness. Next, he talks about how Rebecca used the Gamestop stock phenomenon to boost traffic on her site. After Rebecca posted a link on the Wall Street Bets reddit to an article she wrote about the event, she noticed a surge in traffic. Joshua points out how Reddit can be used to boost traffic. However, redditors aren’t a good source of monetization, because many of them turn ad blockers on. 

Moving into the focus on this episode, the two hosts begin to make their way through Ellen’s email. The subject of Ellen’s email is about a substantial drop she experiences in her content annually. Joshua points out that this is not out of the usual for holiday-centric content. It is important to not only produce seasonal content. If you dig into your site analytics and see that your top performing posts are seasonal specific, that’s great, but you want to make sure you have content that will draw traffic all year long. 

Next, Joshua and Rebecca answer Ellen’s question about when to create mega posts. Joshua recognizes that mega posts are great and can do exceptionally well SEO wise. However, if you have a newer blog you may want to focus on the quantity of posts. If you split a mega post into a bunch of smaller posts, each individual post will be less likely to drastically bump your site around on Google rankings. Of course, this is all site specific, so analyze your pages to see whether a mega post or numerous smaller posts are best for you.

Some tools the hosts offer to help analyze your site are Semrush and Webmaster Tools. These two resources will allow you to see what you’re ranking for that you might not even have explicit content for yet. This can help you create a content plan about which topics you want to cover in your future posts. Rebecca adds that the posts she created using this content strategy are some of the best ranking pages at Let’s Eat Cake. 


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Ellen from https://artsyprettyplants.com/      Start of ep 69

First in Facebook she said: This makes me very happy to hear. This podcast has been the best SEO education. I was so afraid it wasn’t coming back. I’ll be emailing a bunch of questions.

  • First, i want to talk about email for this one. Let’s discuss the process of using a domain email, and how to set it up. It’s easy.
  •  

Hi guys,

I’m soooo, glad you have returned. I just want you to know that I started listening to your podcasts late summer and at the same time as I started taking a highly recommended SEO course which is very good, but I have learned even more from you!

I love utilizing Search Console to help plan my future content as well as for updating old content, so thank you for all the podcasts you have done on that. Sorry for this long email- I am more than happy to come on the show if it’s easier to go through, than answering it in the Facebag.

Please help. In recent months, I worked on a robust content plan that extends from now through June. I really need to be ahead of the game, because my content is seasonal, seeing the highest traffic numbers and growth in the spring. I would really love some reassurance that I’m on the right path before I waste my opportunity during my best traffic growth period. 

I’m a DIY blogger who focuses on concrete crafts and outdoor decor/yard projects. The website is 3 years old, so there’s not tons of year over year data, plus the first 2 years I was only able to work on it part-time. 

However, the data that I do have has been consistent in that it has that dramatic increase in spring, with a noticeable drop right after Memorial day and then a continued decline, though moderated, through the rest of the year. 

This past fall, when I started digging into SEO, my organic growth grew to its highest level ever, but then on 10/27, I had a loss of more than half my organic traffic that didn’t recover. 

This month is getting better because my organic traffic is showing a slow but steady increase, but this is what I would start expecting now seasonally.

I’d like to know if this drastic drop is something I did. This has me concerned that I’m not applying what I’ve learned about SEO properly, or that I may be misinterpreting the data. 

My method for developing a content plan has been to find keywords/queries in Google Search Console that have high impressions and are a recurring theme. I then use those keywords to create cluster content with. 

For the queries Google seems to want to rank me for, I am doing one of two things. Some of those queries are for my existing, what I call mega-posts (nucleus of the cluster). So I’m either updating those posts with even more information (answering People Also Ask questions, etc.) and then creating posts that will be supporting content. 

Or if a mega-post doesn’t already exist, then I’m writing one for that keyword and create more supporting clusters and then do some mad linking between all of them. I hope I’m making sense.

For instance, my DIY concrete stepping stones post gets tons of impressions but relatively low clicks compared to impressions. It is a tutorial on making concrete stepping stones that look like natural stone, the post also has a YouTube video tutorial that goes along with it. 

I have a high discrepancy between impressions and clicks and believe the main reason is because of searcher intent. This is something I feel like I run into a lot with concrete-related posts.

So for the stepping stones, I believe the search intent is to find out how much they cost to buy and have installed, what types of stone options there are, etc. 

With this, my strategy was to write a mega post on stepping stones with all of that type of information- buying vs selling, costs, labor difficulty, types, colors, etc.

My next step is to create the rest of the cluster by writing a couple of other types of stepping stone tutorials. And then do some mad linking between them to support both my initial tutorial, as well as the mega-informational one.

By the way, since both posts are quite robust, can I make these both cornerstone posts? Right now, only the informational one is.

I’m using the same cluster method for a handful of recurring/high impression queries- ie; cinder block planters, driftwood planters, bird baths, large concrete planters, lightweight concrete planters and making silicone molds for concrete. 

Am I interpreting my keywords correctly? (Yes, I know about the Dollar Tree keywords too-which is unrelated to my niche, but I am also doing some more of those).

Am I headed in the right direction, or do I need to rework my whole content plan? Should I be worried about what happened to my traffic this fall? 

I so appreciate your help with this.

FYI- I can provide more information on the traffic drop, reports, or anything else. Just let me know what you need.

Best, 

Ellen

Thank you so much for tuning into Theory of Content this week. Be on the lookout for new episodes coming soon. In the meantime, make sure you didn’t miss last week’s episode where Joshua and Rebecca also answered listeners’ questions.

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