In my last post, I talked about the practical limits of SEO Content Development. If you're going to make a commitment to effective ongoing Search Engine Optimization, you need to determine how much SEO Content Writing you're going to be doing on a sustainable basis.

In the previous post I made the argument that content can't be reduced to a commodity, and will therefore have cost in time and effort that can not be reduced in any significant way through process efficiencies without diminishing quality. This means your only option from a budgetary perspective is to limit the quantity of content you create. That presents a problem: Even if you can estimate how much content you can create, how can you determine how much you actually need?

A Question of Scope: How Much SEO Content Writing is Enough?

To answer the question of how much content is needed, you must determine the scope our your SEO program overall. The purpose of all SEO is to gain site visitors through organic search queries, but it's easy to lose sight of the fact that getting new site visitors is not always the main practical benefit of a web presence in the first place.

Typically, it's just as important for your website to serve as destination that potential customers, no matter how they've heard of your business, use to confirm their sense that you may be the solution provider they're looking for. In this context, the quality of your content as it relates to how people perceive your business is much more important than its ability to draw them to your site through organic search engine result page rankings.

And so, for that aspect of how much SEO content writing you need, the answer is zero. That means that you don't need to worry about certain aspects of SEO, particularly 'freshness.' If the content remains relevant to your target market, and you come across as authoritative, that content is very valuable, even if, as it ages, it is less effective for SEO. And that's an important factor: There are no simple solutions to keeping SEO content fresh: It needs to be newly written or revised on a regular basis to maintain the 'freshness' pillar of the 'Temple of SEO Content Writing."

Yes, but what about bringing in new visitors?

OK, I haven't forgotten that's the main question, but I wanted to point out that the answer has aspects (and I only identified one) that make getting to that answer quite complex. So, how much SEO Content Writing is enough to satisfy your Search Engine Optimization goals? Again, assuming you can't adjust your budget and can't afford to diminish the quality of your content, the only thing left to do is adjust the scope of your overall SEO effort. The good news is that's not as hard as you may think.

First, you need to determine how long it takes to generate good new content for each keyword phrase you want to optimize (well, first you need to determine how many keywords you want to optimize!)

Once you've done that, you need to determine the time frame within which that new (fresh and original), relevant, and authoritative will remain optimal before the content (or at least the keyword it is focused on) needs  to be revisited.

If the keyword is one of your most important, I'd say a good rule of thumb is no sooner than 45 days and no later than 90 days. So, if each page is optimized for a single primary keyword, and you slice it down the middle, you're looking at additional SEO content writing for every primary keyword six times a year.

The Magic Number!

So there it is! The magic number is 6. And using that, by adding in a time/cost factor to optimize that keyword with SEO content writing, you can figure out how much time/expense each SEO keyword will require on an annual basis. If you know your entire budget for SEO Content Writing, you're just a few 'back of the napkin' calculations away from figuring out how many (new or revised) keywords your budget can support every year.

That leaves only one question to be answered, "is that number of SEO optimized keywords enough to meet my goals for increased site traffic?" But the answer to that question will have to wait for my next post. 


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