Evergreen content never goes out of date or out of style.Tweet
In 1996 Bill Gates wrote an essay titled “Content Is King” where he predicted that most money made on the internet would come from content. “One of the exciting things about the Internet is that anyone with a PC and a modem can publish whatever content they can create,” he wrote back then. “Opportunities are remarkable, and many companies are laying plans to create content for the Internet.”
Marketers still use the catchphrase “content is king,” but these days, it’s used to talk about the importance of unique, high-quality, valuable content relevant to one’s audience. Digital marketers live by the phrase “content is king,” and use this saying to communicate the importance of good content for SEO and ranking highly on search engines.
Just because your content is valuable now doesn’t mean it will still be relevant to readers in a couple of years. At some point, content ages and becomes obsolete. And when that happens, the content ceases to be an asset to your company.
In contrast, evergreen content continues to be educative and engaging to the audience for an extended period. Like an evergreen tree, evergreen content stays green year-round. In other words, it never goes out of season or out of style.
In this guide, I will introduce the concept of “evergreen content” and why it is important. I will conclude with some actionable tips to help you create evergreen content. Let’s get started.
What Is Evergreen Content?
Evergreen content refers to search-optimized content that centers on topics that remain relevant for a long time. Evergreen content does not have an expiration date – the information does not become outdated. As a result, it carries the same value as time goes by. It can gain more pageviews over time and increase organic traffic (visitors arriving from a search engine) to your websites.
You can see if a keyword might be a good choice for evergreen content by checking its popularity on Google Trends. That’s what I did to come up with the following topic ideas for evergreen content. Another way to develop evergreen content ideas without using Google Trends is to think about what exists on the web for your subject. For example, if you have expertise in a certain area but articles about it are sparse on the web, you could add your own insights as evergreen content that can help internet readers.
Evergreen Content Idea #1: “How to make money online for beginners”
If you go to Google Trends and enter the search term “how to make money online,” you will see that people have been consistently searching for this phrase at a steady rate for over a decade.
The below graph shows the popularity of the keyword phrase “how to make money online.” The graph’s horizontal or x axis refers to time, while the vertical or y axis refers to relative popularity (from 0 or not popular, to 100 or extremely popular).
Evergreen Content Idea #2: “The ultimate guide to dropshipping”
Dropshipping is a type of online commerce in which one buys products online at wholesale cost and sells them individually at a higher markup. As you can see, Google users have been searching reliably for “dropshipping” since late 2021. Given the prevalence of e-commerce in the pandemic and beyond, this trend will likely continue.
Evergreen Content Idea #3: “Starting a dog sitting business”
Here’s another idea relating to the keyword phrase “dog sitting,” which has enjoyed around 75% relative popularity since late 2021.
One thing these topics have in common is that they focus on subjects without an expiration date. A decade from now, people will still inquire about how to make money online, dropshipping, and dog sitting. These topics are neither trendy nor seasonal, making them evergreen.
Here is an example of a seasonal search term: a soccer tournament called “Euro 2022.” Because it is tied to a specific sports event in 2022, it is not considered evergreen. People may search for it on Google in the future, but not at the level they did in 2022, during the event.
Evergreen content can be a useful tool for content creation for reasons beyond placement on search results pages, though. Keep reading for a few ways that evergreen content can help you.
Why Does Evergreen Content Matter?
Evergreen content can boost your rankings on search engines, lend you credibility and authority, build your brand and revenue, and help you stay relevant in your industry. Let’s unpack each of these benefits in more detail below.
Improves Your Ranking On Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs)
Google can determine whether a user is satisfied with your content through what’s known as a “long click.” A long click occurs when a searcher clicks on your page from Google results and takes a while to read through the page, without going back to the search results page to look through more results.
When you create evergreen content that makes users spend a long time on your page, that indicates that the content satisfies the users’ needs, and should rank high on search engine results pages (SERPs).
Positions You As A Trustworthy Source
Publishing non-time sensitive content that is unique, original, and valuable will help establish you as an authoritative and trustworthy source in your field. It tells readers that they can look to you for expert insights.
Improves Your Brand & Revenue
When you rank high on SERPs and the audience sees you as a trustworthy source, this can help your business. Create evergreen content that is actionable, tackles the pain points of your potential customers, and provides solutions to improve their lives and businesses. This will boost readers’ trust in you, which helps your brand, and can even increase your business revenue. According to a survey by Salsify, 46% of consumers would pay more for a brand that they trust.
Helps You Stay Relevant In The Industry
Besides helping you get new customers, evergreen content helps position you as a leader in your industry.
Whenever anyone needs information on certain topics in the industry, your content is the first that comes to mind.
How to Create Evergreen Content
We’ve talked about the importance of creating evergreen content. Next, let’s talk about how to create it.
Research Topics That Qualify as Evergreen Content
It’s essential to stay away from trendy and time-sensitive topics. Instead, focus on topics with consistent search potential. Know your customers and come up with topics that align with their needs. You can also take a different route and write authoritatively about what you know, which can bring you more visitors from search results over time.
Whatever topics you write about, structure these topics to stand the test of time. You can even take it a step further: highlight poorly written content on popular topics and improve upon what is available on the web to create a more informative resource for readers. This is a great way to come up with topic ideas that would be great for evergreen content.
Refresh Your Website Content Regularly
Keeping web content updated is one way to keep content evergreen, but it does require some work after your blog is published. You can’t possibly refresh every blog post you have on your website. So, how do you know which content to update?
Start by identifying your top-performing content. Focus on your content with impressive performance. Update this content regularly.
Check to see how people are visiting your page (what are known as inbound links) and which pages they are visiting. Use that info to identify the content you should refresh.
Prioritize “EAT” in Your Content Strategy
EAT is an acronym that stands for “Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness.” It stems from Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines, a 167-page document used to determine the quality of Google’s SERPs.
EAT doesn’t hold water on topics like puppies and football; these subjective topics lack authority. Anyone can write about puppies and football in any publications, trustworthy or untrustworthy. However, EAT matters on issues that require expertise to understand: things like setting up your website or computer programming.
EAT is essential for search queries like “how to increase your chance of getting a mortgage.” If you find content with such a topic on an authoritative website, it’s unlikely that the information is legit and untrustworthy.
Another acronym Google uses that is related to eat is YMYL: Your Money or Your Life. You can tell if a page or a topic is YMYL if it can have a real-life impact on the reader’s future, happiness, safety, or financial stability. Google uses a more rigorous standard to analyze these pages, because untrustworthy information that affects these facets of life could be detrimental.
Other ways of implementing EAT in your content strategy include making sure you credit the sources you used to write your content, and creating content from a unique standpoint.
Use Representative Visuals When Needed
Choosing the right visual that meshes with your content is no easy feat, but that doesn’t mean it should take a back seat in your creative process. Content with good visuals is unforgettable, helping readers process, understand, and retain information quickly. After all, humans are visual creatures.
You can create graphics, infographics, and other visual representations with free tools like Adobe Express and Canva.
Explore Different Forms of Content
While evergreen content is timeless and top-quality, they can also take any form. Here are some examples of common evergreen content ideas to explore in your content creation.
- Listicles: 13 competitor analysis tools to spy on your competition
- How-to guides & tutorials: A Beginner’s Guide to Thought Leadership
- Reviews on products and services: Fancy Comma, LLC’s Testimonials
- Case Studies: How the Largest Newspaper in the Pacific Northwest Shares to Social Media
- Tips & best practices: 7 Tips on How To Choose a Website Template
- Historical reference: SciComm in History: Science Service (now the Society for Science)
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Frequently Asked Questions about Science Communication (SciComm)
The Bottom Line
Brainstorming fresh content ideas can be daunting every now and then – even for a great content marketer. Consider an evergreen content strategy to build on your existing content and create classic, useful content that can stand the test of time. Like an evergreen tree, evergreen content remains interesting and useful to readers year-round, and never goes out of season. Additionally, it also strengthens your presence in your niche or industry by positioning you as a reputable source for trusted information.
Philip Oyelola is a content marketer and marketing enthusiast. He helps tech companies with content that builds trust and educates their audiences. He enjoys writing on topics like search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, and managing client relationships. Whenever he’s not writing, he’s watching sci-fi or listening to Afrobeats. Visit Philip on LinkedIn or find him on Twitter @PhilipWrite.