What is Content Development?
Content development is the process of creating content for a website from start to finish. You may also have heard of content creators. The term “content developer” is also used to refer to web developers, but in this article, we’re only focusing on content development – not design or programming.
Content development includes:
- Optimization (SEO)
Content development is interchangeable with content marketing. Web content can be anything from blog posts to infographics to videos.
Some agencies and online content producers only handle one or two steps of the content marketing process. For example, they manage writing but don’t develop, publish, or promote strategies. However, an effective content development strategy is more than just writing or SEO.
Good content can only get you so far – without the right strategy or the wrong advertising methods, no one is going to see the webpage you spent weeks developing. At Inter, we offer a turn-key content development solution focused on long-form blog content designed to increase search traffic. It’s hard work, but the benefits of content marketing are undeniable.
7 Steps For Content Development Process
If you’re looking for a DIY solution to content marketing, check out our seven-step process for content development.
The first step in content development is always to gather as much information as possible.
When we work with companies, we collect information about the following:
- Target demographics
- Key competitors
- Past site performance
- Site goals
- Other information unique to the individual client
We’re kind of data crazy, so the more information and statistics, the better.
Google Analytics and Search Console are great tools for viewing on-site data. SEMRush is our go-to tool for keyword analysis. Ahrefs is hard to beat when it comes to backlink analysis. Moz is another useful tool for looking at domain authority. We also ask questions about brand voice, marketing goals, expectations and more.
The reason for collecting so much information is so that we can make data-driven decisions about which topics to cover.
Blog Topic Analysis
After gathering as much information as possible, it’s time to break it down into actionable information.
One of the most useful pieces of information to look at is competitor performance. We look at which pages on the competitor’s site are driving the most organic traffic. We look at the backlink profile, length and quality of those pages to determine if they can outperform the competition.
In the strategic phase of content marketing, we create a content strategy and editorial calendar.
Exact distributions will vary depending on the client’s business and growth goals. However, our default choice is to write two or more 2,000-word articles for each client each month. Competition and search volumes vary from one industry to the next, and each major research tool has its own system for determining competition.
The writing level is pretty self-explanatory. Here you write as much content as possible.
That means the longer, the better. Longer content ranks better and attracts more backlinks, perhaps because it covers more information and related topics.
Don’t focus on keywords or other ranking markers during the writing phase. Remember that people need to read and enjoy the content first. Search engines should be an afterthought during the writing process.
Optimize & Publish
After the writing phase, we move on to search engine optimization and publishing. Here we consider readability, word count, relevant keywords, and more to make content more attractive to search engines (and people!).
If you really want to go down the rabbit hole, learn about TF-IDF, one of our favorite optimization methods. It seems complicated. And it is. But it is very useful in helping Google find out whether or not you are covering all the relevant topics in your content.
There are hundreds of ways to promote quality content, but the most obvious is social media. You can also consider republishing sites, and don’t forget about good email.
The reason for the promotion is not just to get more eyeballs on the article; This leads to more backlinks, which are as good as gold in the SEO industry.
That said never pay for backlinks. It’s not worth it and you’ll get hit with a Google penalty.
Review & Repeat
Content development is never “done.” It is an ongoing process that begins as soon as it is completed. That’s why we review our content marketing efforts for each website monthly.
If our efforts are successful, we will follow the same path for future content. If we’re not seeing results, it’s time to move on to a new content development strategy. If you’re not sure what to analyze, this guide to analyzing your marketing strategy can help.