What do pine trees and great web content have in common? They’re both evergreen. But what is evergreen content and why is it called evergreen? On a majestic mountain range, you expect to see more than trees: snow-topped peaks, a lake here and there and maybe a winding road leading up to the summit. You probably envision several tree types too. But within that variety, your mountain wouldn’t be complete without some evergreens sprinkled about for year-round color. And your website content needs the same approach.
What Is Evergreen Content?
Everygreen content is just what it sounds like. Think about those pine trees. Sure, they’re always green, but they also give that mountain a fresh look no matter what season it is. They’re always relevant to the range, and they support the mountain with a network of roots beneath the soil and a complete ecosystem above ground for the creatures that visit and live there.
Evergreen content uses the same concept. In addition to providing value to your readers, it:
- Is always relevant
- Is always of interest to readers
- Doesn’t become dated
- Helps hold your position in the search engine rankings
Here are a few examples:
- How-to guides. Use bite-size steps that help beginners, advanced beginners and continuing professionals with important industry concepts.
- Checklists. Every busy person in every industry likes checklists. They’re efficient, they’re useful and they act as a teaching tool. What’s not to like?
- Lists for your niche. Offer lists of the best tools, free and paid. List resources or ideas. You can even list common mistakes because people often remember better and learn more from failures than successes.
A good idea for creating evergreen content is to get back to basics. Answer reader FAQs, explain common concepts for your industry and give advice that’s useful for newbies and seasoned professionals.
Why Evergreen Content Is Important
Of course, you’re going to have some content that changes, like product or service updates, announcements or reports that become outdated over time. That content has its place and provides benefits like creating a public record or providing context. But including evergreen content as a part of your content marketing plan is valuable as well.
Think of it as fortifying the foundation of your website, just like the pine tree roots on the mountain. Evergreen content is something that’s always useful to readers. Whenever people search for it, the search engine web crawlers will see the content and direct readers to your site. Once people are reading your evergreen content, they can branch out from there.
Here’s how it works: Say you’re an outdoor sports gear outlet. You might start with a blog post about how to choose your first set of skis. People aren’t born skiers, so they have to start somewhere, right? And choosing skis is a process that doesn’t change, so the content is evergreen. From there, they might want to know how to find a ski instructor. Then they probably want to know the best places to ski, which would work out really well as a list. And then maybe a checklist for transporting skis when traveling would be useful. You see how this all comes together as timeless content for outdoor sports enthusiasts? So do the search engines, and they’ll point readers to your site as a result.
Evergreen Content and Link Earning
When your content stays relevant over months and even years, you gain notoriety in your market. In addition to increasing your conversion rates, it builds domain authority. That, in turn, gives you brand visibility and earns you links and referral traffic. Not only do the web crawlers love this and keep sending people your way in the search engine results pages, but people will share your content through social media and viral content.
Remember the blog post about choosing your first set of skis? The skier who evolved from that information not only became a customer but shared that information with friends. Then, as he got better and better at skiing, maybe he became a ski instructor himself. Guess where he sent his students for the best info to supplement his classes? And when he wanted to stay updated and learn new tips, you can bet that he went to his trusted go-to website for even more info. And, of course, he shared it with his friends and students. He probably even started his own blog and, guess what? He linked to your site in his blog. And the snowball keeps rolling.
The Art of Patience
Evergreen content takes time to fully develop and give you a return on your investment. You need to look at it as a long-term relationship. Remember that each pine tree started as a tiny seed from inside the cone. Every forest started with just a few trees. Evergreen content will eventually help you reap the rewards, but you must be patient. Probably not as patient as trying to grow a forest on a mountain, but you get the idea. Keep providing value for your readers, and your content will do its job.