Hi everyone,

How are you all doing? We’ve been thinking a lot about our Twin Cities community and sincerely hope you and your loved ones have been staying safe.

We created a Google Sheet with some businesses & organizations, local and beyond, to support during this time. If you’re interested in getting involved and are looking for a place to start, you can find the list here.

A bright spot in our week was the addition of our newest “teammate” Picasso, who was recently adopted by our team member Jess Girardi. He enjoys cooking shows, waking up early and meowing at his new owners. TBD if he’s any good at SEO or Paid Search. We’ll keep you posted.

And before we forget! We’re hosting a webinar on how to get the most bang for your buck on Google Ads. Stay tuned for the details, we hope to see you all (virtually) there.

Now onto marketing. This month’s newsletter focuses on the importance of content marketing, updates to paid social and why you should be redirecting your pages. Read all about it below:

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Top of Funnel Content Creates All Kinds of Problems—But You Should Create It Anyway

by Animalz

The Story: The team at Animalz reliably supplies us with great content, and this article is no exception. In it, Jimmy Daly explains why it’s so important to publish top of funnel content and why many of us are simply looking at it the wrong way.

Why it Matters: The purpose of blog content is to attract new customers, right? Not directly – at least not when it comes to top-of-funnel, informational content. We agree with Jimmy’s take that top-of-funnel content is often a “loss leader.”

It usually isn’t immediately profitable but helps websites obtain critical backlinks that make it easier to rank for keywords that do have commercial intent. Top of funnel content is also effective for other longer-term goals, such as increasing brand awareness and building email lists.

If you’re skeptical of the business value that top of funnel content provides, consider reframing how you think about it. Instead of simply being a way to attract new immediate customers, think of it as a rising tide that lifts all boats, as Jimmy suggests.

Featured Snippets Study: Results From 3,500+ Internet Users

by EngineScout

The Story: A study of how over 3,500 users interact with featured snippets shows that featured snippets get 35.1% of all clicks, compared to regular listings, which get closer to 44% of all clicks. The study takes a detailed look at user behavior across different types of searches (commercial, informative, etc…) and considers some of the main reasons users do — or do not — click on snippets.

Why it Matters: The key takeaway from the article is that, in general, many users trust traditional organic listings. Users tend to believe snippets are ads, and they’re just more comfortable with the “normal” layout. However, what’s interesting to us is that the proportion of users who avoided snippets varies across different types of searches.

Many users really do click snippets, because they’re informative and link to good content. This calls into question a blanket strategy of “optimizing for snippets,” and it reaffirms that SEO is not a one-size-fits all game. The challenge becomes understanding the SERPs on which you’re competing and strategically evaluating the role of snippets in your overall strategy.

The 3-Step SEO Process That Grew Organic Traffic 200%

by SEMrush

The Story: Uproer’s Sr. SEO Analyst Abby Reimer covers step-by-step how to create content Google likes, using this 3-step process. 1) Find your “Gimme” keywords that you can more easily conquer. 2) Analyze competitors’ content with 4 amazing free tools. 3) Source authoritative input from SMEs, your audience and yes, Google. Fun fact: This same process helped us grow one of our own client’s organic traffic 200%.

Why it Matters: Google is getting pickier with what content it deems high-quality enough to rank. This process can help your business streamline SEO content creation and stop you from wasting time writing content that just won’t rank.

Why Redirect?: The Value of a Redirect

by Uproer

The Story: We home in on why redirects are necessary by exploring a client example using revenue, digging through Google literature on the subject, looking at what Google has to say about PageRank and 301 value, and looking at who else is researching the value of redirection.

Why it Matters: Redirecting old products sounds like a no-brainer so it’s not often we stop to think about what the alternatives are. Some popular, well-performing stores like Anthropologie keep all out-of-stock pages live and appear to do just fine in SERPs.

This article encourages SEOs and small businesses to really think critically about their resources and to understand that while one tactic may work for one competitor, it may not work for you.

Technical Content: A Strategy Blueprint for SaaS Companies

by Animalz

The Story: In this article, Animalz explains the three types of content that SaaS companies should create to successfully reach and convert their target customers. These content types are technical content for technical people, business case content for decision-makers, and use-case content that appeals to both groups.

Why it Matters: When potential customers are evaluating SaaS companies, there are often two distinct types of people involved in the decision-making process. There are the engineers whose evaluation is mostly based on technical factors, and the executives who are primarily looking for business value.

It’s critical to have content that satisfies the questions and concerns of both audiences. This requires SaaS companies to deploy a diverse content strategy with both technical and non-technical content.

Other Interesting Stories

Free Tool of the Month: Exploding Topics

Released by Brian Dean of Backlinko a few months ago, this free tool showcases emerging topic trends in more than 20 industries. This can help you discover new and exciting topics to write about (and beat your competitors to the punch).