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Why Evergreen Content is Awesome and Why it Isn’t

By Snap Agency July 21, 2017

Most businesses pursue a content creation strategy because they want to drive organic traffic to their website from search engines like Google and Bing.

One of the best ways to do this is to create content that targets a specific keyword. However, if that keyword only exists for one week, then it’s not particularly powerful, whereas if people are still searching for the same phrase eight years from now, you’ll see a huge benefit.

What is Evergreen Content?

Evergreen content is content that has consistent search volume throughout the year and also over a period of many years. Some SEOs will argue that Christmas content can even be evergreen because it’s relevant each year, but for this article, we’re talking about content that works 365 days each year and over many years.

One example of content like this would be a guide titled “How to Shoot a Soccer Ball,” which is something that people would search for all year.

As you can imagine, plenty of people search for articles like this, and you never need to update them because the instructions or guide never changes. Even twenty years from now people will still kick a soccer ball with the top of their feet!

Huge Search Volume

When you’re looking at these kinds of keywords, you’ll often find that they have huge search volume, or at least it will be huge relative to other keywords in your niche.

This is because this type of content tends to be the most fundamental in the niche and everyone involved in that niche will need to read your content to become better at what they do.

Here are a few more examples:

How to Lay Bricks

MX524 Drill Review

What is the Origin of Christmas?

Who was Nelson Mandela?

What are the Best Leg Exercises?

As you can see, it’s extremely unlikely that the content on any of these posts would ever change. Unless historians find out new information about Christmas or personal trainers, discover a new exercise, both extremely unlikely, the articles will always be relevant.

Also, anyone looking into this niches will need to read these articles. You can’t write about Mandela without knowing who he was, you can’t become a bodybuilder without learning the best leg exercises, and you can’t be a builder without knowing how to lay brick.

Highly Competitive Keywords

However, one of the main disadvantages of evergreen content is that the keywords are almost always some of the most competitive in your industry.

This is simply because other businesses also realize the huge search volume that they have and create their content to rank for the keywords.

This isn’t a problem if you have an authoritative website or can dedicate the time or money to perform outreach, but for a new business, you’re unlikely to rank for it. Instead, it would be smarter to use your time to rank for lower volume keywords that are much less competitive.

Often Not Extremely Valuable

Another disadvantage is that evergreen content isn’t always valuable. Much of it is instructional guides and how-to articles, most of which won’t drive huge amounts of revenue.

Instead, this content should be primarily used for link building and acquiring social signals which will help you to rank other pieces of more valuable content on your website.

Although this isn’t always the case, look at the review keyword that we mentioned before, this could be extremely valuable, and it’s still an evergreen topic. However, in most cases, it’s fair to say that evergreen content is usually informational and rarely commercial.

Long Term

As you have probably gathered from our description of evergreen content, it’s long lasting, and that means that you’ll continue to generate an ROI from it years into the future.

This can make it a great investment for companies who are pursuing a long term SEO and digital marketing campaign.

Doesn’t Benefit from Trends

By nature, evergreen content doesn’t benefit from any changes or trends in the industry. Of course, this sort of content is designed to answer some of the most fundamental questions in the niche rather than to exploit short term opportunities.

Keywords that are short-term but can be valuable would include:

Best Power Drill

What are the Best Vacuums 2017?

Who is the Current Wimbledon Champion?

All of these keywords are looking for time sensitive information. It’s unlikely that the top power drill today is also going to be the best choice three years from now, so you would need to update it. However, it’s obvious that this is still a valuable keyword.

What Should You Do?

Hopefully, we’ve shown you that evergreen content can be excellent, but it’s not the be all and end all.

The best strategy that you can pursue it to create a mixture of evergreen and time-sensitive content. Start by setting up all of the evergreen content that your industry needs and then you can create content that is short-term but still extremely valuable.

If you’re interested in hearing more about how we can pursue a long term content and marketing strategy together, please send us an email today.