In the words of Get Rich Click!’s Marc Ostrofsky, “relevance is a search engine’s holy grail.” Though this is a very simple concept, when it comes to producing infographics for SEO, relevance is sometimes more difficult to achieve than not. We have all run into spammy link bait infographics before. You know the ones that are on based on hot “viral” topics that have nothing to do with the brand/site that is sponsoring it.
All online infographics are a form of content marketing link bait, but there are good forms of link bait and questionable ones. There’s a big difference between relevant infographics with valuable information and spammy infographics unrelated to the publisher. The challenge is that the search engines would to like to reward the valuable content and diminish the value of unrelated content.
Here are three simple reminders that will help you produce relevant infographics that will accomplish exactly what you need them to. Let’s consider the case of a fictitious car dealer that wants to use infographics in their content marketing strategy.
The first rule in communication is, know your audience. You need to choose a topic that your audience wants to read. What type of content do they crave? What topics do they already share links to online?
The best links are from people that have credibility with the topic. A link to our car dealer infographic from a writer at an automotive magazine can be much more valuable than a link from a food critic. So, even though the car dealer could design a great infographic about restaurant chefs, the links would not be valuable to the overall business. An infographic about the fastest cars on the road would be a better choice.
Every time someone posts a link to the infographic, Google considers that to be an endorsement of the page, and to a lesser extent, an endorsement of the overall site. However, when someone posts a link to an infographic, it may not actually be the user’s intent to endorse the site. They just like the infographic. If our car dealer publishes an infographic about restaurant chefs, a link from someone that likes good food isn’t really an endorsement of the car dealer.
This is a problem Google is actively trying to solve, and once they do, the SEO game will change dramatically. Infographic topics should be related in some way to the site that is publishing them. Relevant infographics will also be safer from future algorithm updates rolled out by the search engines.
When choosing an infographic topic, it is helpful to start with a short, specific list of target keywords that you would like to be associated to the final design. Ideally, these keywords should be closely-related, if not identical, to the keywords associated with the site.
When people search for these chosen keywords, our car dealer would love for their infographic to appear in the results. People searching for fast cars are much more likely to be potential customers than people searching for good restaurants.
Real World Example
Audience Relevance: People concerned about hard disk failures are definitely a group of potential customers for online backup.
Site Relevance: Storage media failures are exactly the problem that CrashPlan’s online backup service solves. Media failures are very closely tied to the information and services offered by the site.
Keyword Relevance: The infographic may show in results searching for Cloud Storage, Cloud Backup, Hard Drive Failure, Media Lifespan and Storage. All are keywords and phrases that Crashplan wants to be associated with its site.
This infographic passes all three relevance tests!
Choosing a relevant infographic topic in key to getting successful SEO results. You want an infographic to attract the most valuable links, include content that your audience actually wants to share and be protected from future search algorithm changes. Resist the urge to publish spammy, unrelated infographic topics, because you will regret that decision in the long run.