Does your website still get consistent inbound traffic from old blog posts you wrote months or even years ago?
We like to define evergreen content as traffic driving content that never goes out of date and always stays relevant to the topic.
The lifecycle of a typical blog post is really short. Traffic is always great right after social promotion, after that? Most content is on its way to the graveyard by week two. Even well researched and optimized content usually only sticks around for a few months at best.
So Why Does Most Content Go Stale And Die?
A huge factor in Google’s algorithm is time and relevancy, which we learned in the Nov 2011 “Freshness” update. There are roughly 2.7 million new blog posts published per day, so when another similar, but new post gets published you’re instantly at a disadvantage. As unfair as it may seem, your content is now out of date and no longer relevant.
You can imagine that any news, statistical reports, seasonal topics, and current trends also have a sharp traffic decline as well – usually correlated with seasonal spikes or trending topic declines.
How Can I Create More Evergreen Content?
Content can be categorized as either trending, topical, or both trending & topical. Topical content tends to grow more legs and turn into evergreen content. It’s important to note that both types of content can drive the same audience to your site, the only difference is the traffic run-rate you’ll receive.
For example, let’s say you run an ecommerce site that sells hunting gear, specifically knives. An example of a trending post would be “Best hunting knives of 2016”. As you can tell from just the title, this piece of content, no matter how great it is, will go out of date come Jan 1, 2017. A similar piece of content on the topical side could be something like “A guide to picking the best hunting knife”. Both will drive search traffic with a similar search intent, most likely people looking to purchase a new hunting knife in the near future.
While both types of content are certainly rewarding in their own right, it’s easy to see the power of evergreen content. If your company has a tight content marketing budget, make sure your content strategy doesn’t fully consist of trending content only.
We’ve compiled a list of 10 types of content that has the best chances to turn into evergreen content if you follow the rules above.
1. List Posts
Modern readers love to skim. That is why list posts are so popular. What’s more is people love sharing these articles because they are typically short, sweet, and to the point. Creating a list such as “10 Reasons Why You Need Evergreen Content,” is something that will continue to remain relevant.
2. Beginner’s Guides
Everyone has to start somewhere, and that’s why people love beginner’s guides. These are simple guides that offer an introduction to something, such as “Facebook 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Social Media Marketing on Facebook.”
3. Ultimate Guides
On that note, ultimate guides are also very popular. These well-researched guides are typically longer and more in depth than a beginner’s guide. Using the example above, this might look something like this: “The Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising for Business.”
Checklists also make great evergreen content, but they need to be useful and relevant to the reader. The checklist is a great content asset to use in the initial stage of the buyer’s cycle. This list can help the reader determine if they need your business. Ex: “IT Security Checklist: Is Your Network Secure?”
5. Case Studies
Readers enjoy seeing personal experiences from real customers, but they need a bit more than that. The case study gives you an opportunity to support these personal success stories with statistics about how your business helped the customer grow or reach a goal. This type of content is relevant no matter how much time has passed.
Similarly, interviews are a great and simple way to offer your readers more personal experiences about real customers. Interviews with experts are also popular evergreen content because everyone likes to learn from the best.
7. How-To Tutorials
How-To tutorials are another type of content that remain useful and relevant to the reader. These are also more likely to be shared if they are successful. An example might be, “How to Write an Effective Cover Letter.” Don’t be afraid to try pairing the written content with a video to make it even more effective and shareable.
8. Resource Lists
If you are looking for evergreen content that is quick and easy to create, resource lists are right up your alley. These lists provide a guide for readers who are looking for more information on a particular topic. For instance, you might compile, “The 8 Best Books for Aspiring Entrepreneurs.”
9. Industry FAQs
Frequently asked questions are a great source of evergreen content, and like the resource list, they can be quick and simple to create. Find out what questions are frequently asked by leads and current customers. Then, take those answers and go into a bit more depth to create effective content that helps educate the reader.
10. Historical Posts
Historical posts are also effective evergreen content because history never changes! If the post is interesting and relevant to your field or industry, it can be a great way to engage the reader.