Five Content Marketing Mistakes That Will Hurt Your SEO

SEO is essential to help content stand out. Vertical Leap’s Dave Colgate, SEO Manager, looks at how to incorporate a successful SEO strategy and shares what marketers should prioritize.

You can’t win in content marketing without an equally impressive SEO strategy – and vice versa. Content provides the substance of SEO, while SEO helps your content go further, which means both strategies need to work together to maximize results.

Vertical leap on the importance of prioritizing an SEO content strategy / Benjamin Dada via Unsplash

To illustrate the importance of this relationship, let’s look at five content marketing mistakes that will hurt your SEO performance.

1) Using the wrong research data

Any decent content marketing strategy analyzes search data to inform key decisions, such as target keywords, topics, and emerging trends. However, it is important to use the right research and use it correctly.

Let’s say you are looking for new content marketing opportunities and start with keyword research to find queries/topics with high search volumes and high CTRs. So far, so good. Except you can’t just target the keywords with the highest search volumes or CTR and expect to get results.

The latest news and marketing information straight to your inbox.

Get the most out of The Drum by choosing from a range of excellent email briefings, whether it’s daily news, weekly recaps or in-depth media or creative dives.


You need to analyze the searches on a deeper level to make sure they align with your content strategy on the following points:

  • Relevance

  • Target audience

  • User intent

  • Conversion actions

If you’re an interior design business, you don’t want to produce content for keywords aimed at people who want to learn interior design on their own. you want to target people who are looking to hire.

You want to produce content that attracts the right audiences, keeps them on your website, and encourages them to take meaningful action. Failure to do so will weaken your content’s ability to generate leads and will also hurt your SEO performance by reducing on-page engagement, conversions, and other signals Google uses to determine if you’re giving users what they want. they want.

2) Play follow the leader

Copying the best aspects of your competitors’ content strategies is great, but you’re not going to beat them by doing this alone. To outrank rivals that rank above you in SPERs, you need to find new content marketing opportunities before them and create exposure before they spread.


We use our own intelligent automation system called Apollo Insights to analyze thousands of data points to find new content marketing opportunities before our clients’ competitors.

In SEO, it is always easier to maintain search positions than to overtake others. Similarly, you can create visibility much faster if you react quickly to new opportunities and optimize them before everyone discovers the same keywords.

3) Let your old content gather dust

Content marketing and SEO share a lot in common, with quality always trumping quantity. Don’t fall into the trap of putting all your resources into publishing as much content as possible, leaving nothing to update your old content.

Let’s look at some of the most important characteristics of quality content:

  • Pertinent

  • Exact

  • Authoritarian

  • Informative

  • Up to date

Even the best content ages over time, and all of the above characteristics degrade as your content ages. So make sure you have a system in place to update your old content, otherwise the quality of your pages will decrease further.

To maximize the visibility of your pages, you want to avoid what is known as keyword cannibalization, which is multiple pages ranking for the same keyword. Essentially, this splits your SEO rankings across multiple pages instead of maximizing one-page visibility.

What does this have to do with updating old content?

Well, if you only create one page for each keyword, you have to make sure that each page performs to the best of its ability, and then you have to maintain that performance or risk losing visibility for that particular keyword. .

4) Skip Technical SEO

Even Google talks about quality content being the most important factor in search rankings, but it doesn’t matter how good your content is if no one sees it. Technical SEO isn’t the most glamorous aspect of content marketing (or search optimization, for that matter), but it’s one of the most important.

If your pages aren’t optimized to be crawled and indexed by search engines, your content marketing strategy is going nowhere.

In addition to helping search engines discover and index your content, technical SEO can boost your page rankings and avoid a range of issues that can hurt your search rankings, such as broken links, cannibalization keywords, coding issues, slow loading times, and a range of other SEO nasties.

5) Ignore usability and CRO

If you want people to interact with your content and take action, you need to take usability seriously. Google certainly takes it seriously. It punishes sites that deliver poor mobile experiences or slow loading – or accumulate a bunch of signals that indicate poor user experience (UX), such as high bounce rates, low average time on page, and drop rates. low conversion.


You can use Google’s free PageSpeed ​​Insights tool to measure your website’s performance, including load times and Core Web Vitals.

Poor usability will hurt your search rankings, but it will also limit your ability to turn page views into useful actions. So, whatever your content marketing goals, you won’t optimize performance unless you deliver quality experiences consistently, on every page.