It’s a funny term, and one you may have heard used before but not really understood what it means: evergreen content.
So what exactly is evergreen content and why does your business need it?
Evergreen content is good quality content that is relevant now, tomorrow and always. It is not content that is centred around current affairs, but is instead based on topics that will continue to be of interest for a long time after it is published.
Evergreen content includes topics such as; parenting and family, careers and finance, health and fitness, diet and nutrition (although some ‘fad’ diets may stop being relevant over time). These are the kinds of topics that people will always be interested in and will always be searching for.
The format of evergreen content can be articles/blogs, lists, videos or ‘how-to’. Topics that are not considered evergreen is anything that is current for a specific time, such as: news and current affairs, statistics, seasonal or holiday articles and anything that is trending. If you need to put a special day or date on it (for example ‘Election Day’ or ‘Mother’s Day 2016’) then it is not evergreen. Once that day or date has passed, it is unlikely people will be looking at that article again as it will no longer be relevant to them.
Non-evergreen articles are still very important and a great way to boost traffic to your blog or website if you get them published while the news is still news. However, if you only have time to blog occasionally you are better off building your online content library with information that will be applicable all year round. This way, all of the work and effort you put into your blogs will continue to pay off over the course of months or years, instead of having a spike in views and then not being looked at again. Also, having a large selection of informative articles will help position you as an authority on that subject – something that is very helpful when potential customers visit your website.
Writing about new studies that have been released can fall into both categories – news and evergreen. It will be a news article when it is first released, and it can be a great topic to share on your business page as it shows you are up-to-date with information relevant to your industry. However, studies do go out of date. Sometimes they might stay the most recent study for years, and sometimes they have a shelf life of just months. When the study is updated you can use this to your advantage by doing some fairly fast and easy tweaks to your existing article, making it completely up-to-date again. That means this one article on a particular study can remain evergreen as you just update the numbers and information when needed.
Seasonal posts are ones that are relevant to specific times of the year, such as Christmas, Easter, winter or special holidays. They are not technically evergreen as they are not relevant all year round, however if you share them at the same time each year you can still get a lot of mileage from them.
Tips for writing evergreen content
Google likes it when you have content on your site that is relevant, unique and adds value for the reader. If you want your evergreen content to come up in searches, make sure it contains valuable information and it will naturally rise to the top.
The very purpose of evergreen content is making sure it doesn’t ‘expire’. That means, instead of having ‘what to buy for Christmas in 2016’ you should just have a post that says ‘what to buy for Christmas’ and then update it each year with new information.
Although evergreen content is created with the purpose of being relevant for years to come, it doesn’t mean you should ‘set and forget’ it altogether. Google likes fresh content, and so do your readers. If you have an evergreen post that does well, it can be tempting to just leave it alone. But you should tweak it every so often with new information, rewrites of old paragraphs when necessary and update the keywords based on the ones that are currently most relevant to your business.
Once someone finds your site you should try to keep them clicking around for a bit. Invite them to stay by having links to other relevant and popular blog posts that you think they might enjoy. You can do this by linking within the article or by having links to your most popular posts in navigation menus on the side or the bottom of your site. Also, make sure you have a ‘share’ button so the post can make the rounds on social media if people like what they are reading!