What Is Evergreen Content and How Can I Create It?
What is evergreen content, and how can you make use of it in your content marketing strategy? Simply put, it’s content which retains relevance, is not time-sensitive and continues to drive traffic long past its initial publication. In addition, it is compliant with SEO principles, and it can help generate top search engine ranking.
We will be taking a deep dive into this vital type of content in this article and show you how to create your evergreen content and promote it.
You are likely missing valuable search traffic and new content ideas if you don’t use evergreen content to drive ongoing growth.
Evergreen content is an essential part of any SEO strategy. It has been proven to be one of Google’s top-ranking factors, alongside backlinks.
What is Evergreen Content?
Evergreen content refers to search-optimized content which is always relevant and remains “fresh” over time. It may seem that all content is sustainable since a blog post doesn’t disappear once it has been published, but evergreen content is different and has no expiration date.
This content revolves around a topic that is always relevant for readers, regardless of the season or news cycle. Because of this, they are often shared, high-ranked, and repeatedly referenced over time. Its name derives from the evergreen, a plant that retains its green leaves all year-round.
To visualize this for you, I compared the search interest for “How to start a Blog” and “Christmas Trends” from January 2019 to December 2020 on Google Trends:
There might be a slow increase or decrease in interest over the long term. However, seasonality doesn’t affect it. Your SEO strategy is more powerful by using evergreen content because it will drive continuous growth for every piece of content you publish.
It is common to confuse what an evergreen topic is and what is not. This is why it is crucial to determine what type of content you should be producing to drive success with your content marketing strategy.
These are the types of content you should avoid:
Seasonal content (e.g. Christmas, Easter, etc.)
Content focused on current trends (Fashion, Interior, etc.)
Statistics and reports that are out-of-date quickly
It is not evergreen if a topic is likely to experience a decline in relevance and interest after a specific timeframe, such as after an event or holiday season. However, seasonal content can still be a part of your strategy. It serves a different purpose and is amplified with other content strategies.
Why Is Evergreen Content Important?
How-To guides, tutorials, and videos are a great way to increase organic traffic to your website, convert more visitors into leads and establish authority. But writing reactive articles can’t guarantee your business’s success in the future. Instead, marketers must create content that is always in demand and doesn’t change over time.
The graphic shows that after people realized the US presidential election was decided, their interest in the topic and traffic to news articles covering it plummeted.
This places you in a hamster wheel situation in which you have to keep producing content. Your traffic will drop if you stop publishing. That’s why you should create content about evergreen topics. It saves you time and helps you work productively.
What Are the Popular Evergreen Content Formats?
You must remember that evergreen content can cover many different formats. Each of these formats can serve a specific purpose in your larger content marketing strategy.
For example, you can rank higher and drive more traffic by using how-to guides, videos, interviews, and testimonials. They will allow you to engage your audience and help them remain loyal to your business. Let’s look at some popular content formats.
1. How-To Guides
Google is the best place to go to get answers to your problem or learn something new. Prepare to offer them detailed, informative guides on various topics within your niche. You can drive traffic by providing how-to guides.
How-to guides provide information that leads the reader through a process or workflow. This format may look like listicles because you also number the processes. These guides can help establish authority in your field of expertise and build trust among readers. The anatomy of a how-to guide looks like this:
These questions will help you determine whether your topic should be a How-to guide:
Are you describing a multi-step process?
Is it necessary that all steps be taken in a certain order?
Will the reader be able to achieve a certain goal or solve particular problems if they follow this process?
If “no” is the answer, you might reconsider writing a listicle.
“How to” search queries are so popular that Google even created a promotional video and campaign page for it featuring the many things people are searching for.
In fact, the popularity of “How to start”, has increased to an all-time high in April 2020 and continues to exceed pre-pandemic levels. This trend is likely to stay.
Let’s take one of the most popular topics, “How to tie a tie”, for example. Upon entering the search term, we get over 1.3 billion results on Google with a How-To video from YouTube featured on top and multiple images and articles below.
Also, the same search query on YouTube leads us to a whole range of videos with millions of views.
YouTube’s user-friendliness, combined with the rising popularity of video, has made it the second most popular search engine after Google. With 3 billion searches per month, its monthly search volume exceeds that of Bing and Yahoo combined – one more reason to work on your video marketing strategy and use evergreen content.
Listicles are not a new concept and have been around for a while. However, the list article structure has played a vital part in the evolution of content marketing.
Listicles experienced a hype with the popularity of Buzzfeed and carried forward to countless other pages on the internet and even print media, as we can see in the below cover from Men’s Health Magazine.
List articles tend to be lighter than long-form content and provide a quick way for people to get surface-level information. Listicles can be written on any topic and offer informative and easily digestible content. The specific number helps a reader understand what they’re in for before they start reading.
As an online marketer who publishes evergreen content, knowing the three types of listicle formats is crucial. This will help you convert prospects with your content.
A simple list, the most basic format, uses images and captions without any overarching narrative. Simple lists are what Buzzfeed specializes in with post titles like “18 Celebrity Instagrams You Probably Missed This Week” or “27 Shocking Movies Endings People Didn’t See Coming From A Mile Away”. There is often very little detail, and the content is often very scannable.
This listicle type can also be used to shortlist the best travel destinations for next summer, the latest tech gadgets, and just about any other topic that you can think of. It works well on social media because it’s straightforward and doesn’t take long to read, but it doesn’t work well for SEO-focused content.
This list article structure is fundamentally different from a simple list. Each item is linked together with expanded entries, which provide a lot more detail.
Expanded lists start with a narrative, tell a unique story, and go in-depth. These evergreen articles can easily have over 4,000 words or more. Check out the example below featuring a beauty article by Vogue utilizing this listicle type:
Popular listicles of this type tend to have at least 4,000 words. The more complete the information of the listicle is, the higher the chances of getting shared on social media.
It is no surprise that videos are the next evergreen content format I introduce in this article. 86% of businesses use video as a marketing tool in 2021, increasing slightly from 85% in 2020, according to a survey by Wyszowl.
For your videos to be evergreen, you must first contextualize them by topic and not by time. So let’s start by breaking down the most common types.
“About Us” videos can be used to present your team, give some background information, and put a face to your brand for the viewers. These evergreen videos can be included on both your “About Us” page and blog. They can be informative, entertaining and are a great way to get in touch with your viewers.
The below video is an excellent example by Apple, presenting their open work culture:
You can share a great story about your client with your viewers. It’s a great opportunity to share a story about a client and to show the work you did together. It will raise your client’s profile as well as yours and show that you are customer-centric.
23andMe, a biotechnology company offering direct-to-consumer DNA tests, published the video below, with over 1.5 million views on YouTube.
It is also very likely they promoted it on YouTube and spent money to get this many views. However, stories about other people are a powerful sales tool. People want to see themselves in the mirror and ask, “If I have this, what would it mean for me?”
Product or Service
As long as your product or service (and the way your customers use it) doesn’t change, your videos will be evergreen. This video can be used to explain the product or service to your prospects or guide them through its use.
I like the video Tesla created to showcase their “Dog Mode” in their cars. The clip is short but explains the part quickly, and in 2 years, it gathered over 1 million views on YouTube. In addition, they shared it numerous times during summer on social media when the news reported about dog owners leaving their pets in the car.
If you want to learn more about Video Marketing, please check out my guide, which teaches you everything you need to know, from choosing the right type of video to drafting your strategy and integrating it into your content marketing plan.
4. Other Popular Formats
While the three evergreen content formats above are my favorites, I’m shortlisting a few more that are popular on the internet and can help your brand reach its goals:
You must remember that evergreen content can cover many different formats. Each of these formats can serve a specific purpose in your larger strategy. So, first, you should always choose your evergreen topic and then think about which format would be the perfect fit to present to your audience.
How to Create Evergreen Content?
Because of its benefits, every brand strives to create evergreen posts regularly. Now that we know what evergreen content is and what different formats are, let’s dive into how we make this great content for your marketing campaigns.
1. Topic Research
First, look for topics that will work well for your website while still relevant to your audience. Additionally, look at the published articles on your blog and figure out which can retain the most readers. The next step is to look at other blogs and get inspired by what worked for them.
Once you have your topic, you can use free tools like Google Trends to ensure you do not pick a trending topic instead of an evergreen.
2. Pick the Right Keywords
You can rank your posts higher by using the correct keywords. These keywords can be identified using one of the keyword research tools (Term Explorer, Ahrefs, and SEMrush) or by simply entering a Google search query if you want a free alternative.
Let’s take, for example, “what is inbound marketing” and Google will show you the relevant keywords that people search for.
3. Creating 10X Evergreen Content
Google’s goal is to deliver the best result for your search query. Therefore, your content must be better than anything else on the subject, but it must be way better. This is what you call “10X content” in online marketing.
If your content is the same as everyone else’s (1X), then someone will be able to come along and compete with it. If your content is a little better than what’s out there (2X), it will be more successful. Depending on your luck and how competitive the keyword is, it could last for weeks, months, or years. However, if you can produce the best content on the subject (10X), your chances of maintaining a high ranking are higher.
Keeping an eye on the readability of the content, uniqueness, and authority in the industry will determine the success of your article.
Promoting Your Content
Promoting your evergreen content is just as important as publishing it. Promotion strategies are often the missing piece to the puzzle that makes content so much more successful. You can’t expect people to find your content.
Use Link Building (inbound and outbound links, backlinks, and external links)
Promote your great piece of content on social media
Use your newsletter to inform your subscribers
Utilize PPC advertising to widen your reach
I hope this article is helping you decide to start creating evergreen content for your brand or business. Integrating evergreen content into your overall content strategy can allow you to create an SEO powerhouse.
You should regularly update evergreen content because there will be new articles that you can link and other significant developments. Updates to content and their published dates can improve SEO rankings. Neil Patel reported that SEO rankings could be significantly enhanced by updating evergreen articles. Once your content is updated, promote it like a new piece.