A digital marketing question we get asked often enough to warrant a blog on the topic is in relation to businesses involved in email marketing and whether or not there’s a way to utilise that unique content for SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) purposes. Usually, the question revolves around whether or not the content would be good to duplicate onsite as well as send out in emails but if links from emails to a website count towards SEO like links from other websites do. The short answer to both is “indirectly no” & “indirectly yes”. So let’s take a deeper dive into it to help guide your combined email marketing, SEO efforts and overall digital marketing plan in the future.
Can you duplicate your email content on your website?
The answer is definitely a no, but our answer would conflict a little with the official stance of search engines. While Google in particular states that emails play no role in SEO, it’s something we’re inclined to take with a grain of salt given that we know for a fact that they are aware of and do index email content. They don’t index it for the search engine as it would obviously be insane to show email content in search results, but they know that it exists.
So when you combine this fact with the fact that they have big problems with content duplication, it makes rational sense to err on the side of caution. Just as they once dubiously claimed in the early days of social media that it played no role whatsoever in rankings or any digital marketing to do with Google, we choose to bet on the idea that duplicating email content on your website is not looked upon favourably. It’s part of how we’ve been so successful with our SEO over the years: Think like them, join the dots and steer clear of anything you’re even slightly unsure of.
How best to go about it.
You’re not wrong if you think that there could or should be some sort of SEO benefit to the content you spend so much time producing for email marketing purposes. Most businesses engaged in email marketing tend to also be engaged in regular blogging via their website and the email content you produce is a natural fit for expansion into unique content for that blog. The email content alone could inform weekly blogs for an entire month with topics to spare for other online marketing efforts. Simply take the 4 top bits of news and expand on them. It won’t take that much longer than it did to write the content for its originally intended purpose and in the long run you actually save time on having to write a blog separately!
The main thing we’d have to stress however is that if you’re going to do this, have a keyword focused plan that informs both mailing list efforts and your blogs. Simply producing marketing material on whatever comes to mind or is general news without thinking about the keywords that you’re trying to target and incorporating that into those efforts will be directionless at best, or spammy and detrimental at worst. So pull together a spreadsheet and plan your content out!
But to get to the link building side of things.
Just as we take the idea that the official stance from Google on email content not being factored into your SEO with a grain of salt so that we can avoid duplication, we also take it with a grain of salt that links via emails don’t help. Obviously they’re not going to hold the same weight as links from websites, but Google is well aware that they exist and the idea that they don’t factor this in when calculating the value of your website seems pretty stupid. It’s a genuine part of your online presence and contributes to the activity around your website just as social media does.
It’s hardly something that’s going to be a game changer for you, but considering SEO while implementing email links takes hardly any time and even if the links did have zero weight, the activity around your website does help, so refer to the keyword focus via the spreadsheet we mentioned putting together above and be strategic about it.
At the end of the day, we can’t say that this is an activity that will turn a campaign around for you, but we’ve made a pretty good career out of reading between the lines with search engines and we firmly believe this to be a ranking factor. So with the minimal amount of effort required, our answer to whether or not email marketing should be integrated into your SEO efforts, the answer is a definite yes.
As always, if you’d like us to elaborate at all on today’s blog or to explore your options with regards to digital marketing in Brisbane and its surrounds then please feel free to get in touch!