Ear­li­er this week, while I was review­ing my blog’s ana­lyt­ics, I noticed an inter­est­ing search some­one typed into Google and that had brought them to my blog:

hap­py birth­day from me and or i and

What shocked me was that the search brings up 24 mil­lion results. And, cool sto­ry, one of my posts was the top result. And it’s only 6 months old.

So, how did I do it?

Well, this Decem­ber marks 17 years that I’ve been blog­ging. I’ve learned a few tricks along the way to gen­er­ate traf­fic and cre­ate aware­ness of old con­tent. Here’s one par­tic­u­lar trick I like to use that works par­tic­u­lar­ly well on blogs with a lot of con­tent.

Skip the key­words.

Or more specif­i­cal­ly, stop try­ing to tar­get pop­u­lar key­words, espe­cial­ly if you’re in a sat­u­rat­ed space. There are so many gram­mar blogs out there, that I’d nev­er be able to com­pete on pop­u­lar phras­es. Going after the pop­u­lar key­words is too much work for the headache that comes with it.

Instead, focus on qual­i­ty con­tent rich with good key­words, but not nec­es­sar­i­ly the most pop­u­lar ones. Con­sid­er the long tail.

Long tail

In the above graph, the green rep­re­sents the most pop­u­lar key­words. The yel­low rep­re­sents less pop­u­lar key­words, or the long tail. The fun­ny thing is that long tail search engine results often account for more com­bined traf­fic than pop­u­lar key­words.

My most pop­u­lar blog post dis­cuss­es the dif­fer­ence between sit­ting and seat­ing. In fact, it’s so pop­u­lar, that it gar­ners 75% more traf­fic than my home page does. Vis­i­tors arrive to the post through a vari­ety of search terms, not just pop­u­lar ones:

  1. seat­ing or sit­ting
  2. dif­fer­ence between seat­ing and sit­ting
  3. dif­fer­ence between sit­ting and seat­ing
  4. dif­fer­ence between sit and seat
  5. sit­ting or seat­ing
  6. dif­fer­ence between seat and sit
  7. sit­ting and seat­ing
  8. what is the dif­fer­ence between sit and seat
  9. sit and seat dif­fer­ence
  10. sit­ted or seat­ed
  11. seat­ing and sit­ting
  12. what is the dif­fer­ence between sit­ting and seat­ing
  13. seat and sit dif­fer­ence
  14. sit­ting and seat­ing dif­fer­ence
  15. seat­ing arrange­ment or sit­ting arrange­ment
  16. seat­ing sit­ting
  17. dif­fer­ence between sit­ting arrange­ment and seat­ing arrange­ment
  18. dif­fer­ent between seat and sit
  19. dif­fer­ences between sit and seat
  20. sit­ting seat­ing

And those are just the top 20 search phras­es. The list goes on for­ev­er.

I did with the post I ref­er­enced at the begin­ning of this post. I wrote the con­tent, not even wor­ry­ing about pop­u­lar key­words.

So remem­ber, stop obsess­ing over pop­u­lar key­words. Cre­ate com­pelling, well-writ­ten con­tent that has the infor­ma­tion peo­ple want to read. The traf­fic will come on its own. Espe­cial­ly the more you write.

What tricks do you use to raise aware­ness of your old con­tent? Let me know in the com­ments.

About Kim Siever

I am a copy­writer and copy­ed­i­tor. I blog on writ­ing tips most­ly, but I some­times throw in my thoughts about run­ning a small busi­ness. Fol­low me on Twit­ter at @hotpepper.

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