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Popular WordPress hosting service creates high-ranking blog posts that attract thousands of site visitors a month

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“Semrush's ever-expanding keyword database has played a key role in our content strategy, allowing us to get a better understanding of what our target audience is searching for so that we can tailor our content to meet the needs of our readers, resulting in more organic visitors to our website and more clients signing up to our hosting plans."
Sam Gooch, SEO Strategist at Kinsta

About Kinsta:

Kinsta is a premium managed WordPress hosting provider offering industry-leading speeds and unmatched multilingual expert support. Founded in 2013, Kinsta has now grown to a company powered with 250+ happy remote-first employees from all walks of life, serving thousands of clients from 128 countries around the globe.

Business challenge: growing traffic and conversions with blog content

Kinsta prides itself on being the number one WordPress hosting provider, but also on its finely tuned content machine, which pumps out daily articles to help business owners, developers, and customers succeed online, while navigating every kind of obstacle along the way.

The content published on Kinsta’s blog is usually not directly linked to Kinsta’s hosting services, but the topics target WordPress developers and website owners, usually helping them to overcome a pain point or improve their website. This helps Kinsta to increase brand awareness to users who are likely able to make decisions on which hosting provider they use. While first-click conversion rates are generally low, this content plays a crucial role in assisted conversions as users continue to return and consume more content.

In the past, most of the topic ideas came from brainstorming and looking at improving on articles that competitors had already published. Each content piece requires thorough research and expert knowledge, which can be very time-consuming, so it was important to prioritize content pieces based on the size of the potential audience.

The content team was looking for valuable insights into:

  • How popular the proposed topics were 
  • Which keywords could drive the most traffic
  • Suggestions for other related keywords to target 

This would guide the content strategy, with the aim of increasing organic traffic by better targeting relevant audiences. These keywords would then need to be tracked, in order to monitor progress once each article was published.

Solution: turning topic ideas into finished blog posts through keyword and competitor research

This is where Semrush’s keyword research tools come in. Armed with these powerful tools, Kinsta’s content team is able to qualify topics based on the search volumes for keywords that fall under each topic, to turn a loosely-defined topic idea into a fully-fledged content piece which can later be translated into nine other languages on the website, with localized keywords targeting readers in their respective countries.

1. Choosing the seed keyword

The content team starts with a primary keyword they’d like to rank for, paying careful attention to the following keyword metrics: 

  • Estimated monthly search volume
  • Keyword Difficulty score 
  • Search intent 
  • SERP competition

These metrics can vary a lot depending on the potential audience size for each topic, as well as the authority score of your website. At Kinsta, a respectable monthly search volume for a primary keyword would be no less than 4,000, with a Keyword Difficulty score of less than 70. Younger domains will generally target smaller search volume and low-competition terms in order to aim for achievable rankings.
 
The main search intent behind the keywords is generally informational, since the articles tend to cover a variety of topics pertaining to improving and fixing websites, but some articles also target transactional intent, which usually leads to more sales conversions.

Finally, an understanding of your ranking chances and potential traffic for a keyword are incomplete without SERP analysis. Before trying to rank for a term, check the current search results to assess if it’s worth competing for.

For example, while doing research for an article about content translation, after carrying out keyword research using the Semrush Keyword Magic Tool, it was clear that the top-volume keyword was ‘translate website’, with 12,100 monthly searches in the US and 93,100 worldwide. 

However, this keyword had a Keyword Difficulty score of 94, with Google Translate ranking in position 1, along with site links, People Also Ask results, and a knowledge panel on the right, so even if Kinsta was able to rank in position 2, the click-through rate would likely be very low.

As a result, the team chose the less-competitive primary keyword ‘how to translate a website’. While this keyword closely matched the original variant, there were some significant differences. Google still ranked in position 1, but this keyword did not trigger any site links, knowledge panels on the right, or even People Also Ask results, so a position 3 result would still appear above the fold, with the potential to still drive plenty of clicks.
 

2. Enriching articles with related keywords

The seed keyword alone isn’t enough to give an article shape and direction. The Kinsta team gathers additional keyword variants and related terms to generate ideas on sub-topics and sections. The related terms help answer the most popular questions and increase the potential search volume of each piece while enriching the content’s topical relevance.

The team identified several supporting keywords to use throughout the article by entering the primary keyword into Semrush’s Keyword Magic Tool, which provides a list of similar keywords with potential search volume. The tool allows you to filter keywords by topic, but also view commonly searched questions, which helps when targeting queries that trigger Google’s People Also Ask results. 

In this case, the tool highlighted a strong demand for content covering the process of translating websites using different browsers. For example, the query ‘how to translate a website in chrome’ had a global search volume of 360, with several other related queries carrying additional search volumes. 

Based on this, the team created sections covering step-by-step instructions on how to translate websites in the most popular browsers, using the target keywords as H3 header tags. They made sure to include screenshots with alt attributes also containing these keywords, along with anchor links for each section, which often appear below the search results to help users jump straight to the relevant section.

3. Learning from competitors

Next comes competitor research, which helps to further widen the net by uncovering more potential keywords and/or new angles from which to develop the articles. 

The team starts by using the seed list of keywords to get an understanding of what other similar content is out there and already ranking. The SERP Analysis report in the Keyword Overview tool lists the Google search results, along with key metrics (Authority Score, referring domains, backlinks, etc.) 

Checking the actual web pages is also useful, as this provides inspiration on what to cover, but also demonstrates what Google is expecting to see, based on the search intent of each keyword.

Armed with this list of top-ranking pages, the сontent team can get to work using the Semrush Organic Research tool to uncover the keywords that a competitor article ranks for. By setting the ranking position from 1 to 10, it’s possible to hone in on all page 1 keywords, further developing the keyword list.

4. Article assembly

Now it’s time to refine which keywords will be targeted, then map out the different sections that will be covered in the article, making sure every section provides the best possible answer for each of the target keywords to best address the search intent.

Results

The blog post was published on 31 August 2021. Like many other Kinsta blog posts, it’s clear from the results that this piece was a success. Not only did the blog post move its way up to ranking in position 2 in Google for the primary keyword, Semrush also showed that it was able to gain 41 page 1 positions, driving thousands of visitors every month.

The same trend can be seen in Kinsta’s Google Analytics reports, with impressive growth in the months after it was published.

Kinsta’s content team has used this tried and tested technique as part of their content strategy, helping the great content that they produce to be surfaced for users who are searching for it.

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