Are you struggling to crack the code of SEO content? If you’re a digital marketer, business owner, content creator, or SEO enthusiast striving to create high-performing content, this guide is tailor-made for you.

Packed with practical insights and actionable tips, this comprehensive guide unveils the steps to conquering two of the biggest SEO content challenges:

  • Creating SEO-optimized copy that performs well organically
  • Building authority

To get the most out of this guide, approach it as a roadmap to navigate the ever-changing digital landscape.

By the end of this guide, you’ll be armed with the strategies and tactics to create content that performs well organically and resonates with your target audience.

However, it is important to note that creating SEO-optimized content and building authority cannot be dealt with in isolation.

For example:

  • Scenario 1: If you only try to build authority without paying enough attention to creating SEO-optimized content, it is evident your content won’t rank high on the Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs).


  • Scenario 2: If you only create SEO-optimized content but don’t pay enough attention to authority building measures like syndication, or guest posting, you won’t achieve desired results either.

While high-quality content is crucial for SEO success, it alone won’t guarantee desired results.

Factors like keyword or topic research, website structure, user experience, backlinks, and social signals play a vital role in determining search engine rankings and attracting organic traffic.

Even the most brilliant content may struggle to rank well and reach the intended audience.

It will take a comprehensive SEO content strategy that goes beyond just words to ensure maximum visibility and engagement.

Therefore, you need a complete framework to deal with these SEO content challenges for long-term gains.

At ALPS, you have developed a 6 Step Approach to make sure that every content that goes out there on the internet performs well organically.

  • Step 1: Topic Research
  • Step 2: Content Structure
  • Step 3: Content Creation
  • Step 4: Content Optimization
  • Step 5: Building Authority
  • Step 6: Content Performance Measurement

Let’s dig in!

Step 1: Topic Research

First thing first,

Why do we say Topic research and not Keyword research?

The continuous evolution of Google’s search algorithms, like the Hummingbird update (2013), RankBrain update (2015), and Helpful Content update (2022), prompted the shift from merely targeting keywords to understanding the broader context of user intent and interests.

This shift prompted the need for a more holistic approach known as topic research.

Topics help you organize information, but keywords don’t. Keywords reveal different words or phrases used to search for the same result but don’t necessarily capture the semantic relationship like topics.

By focusing on topics, you transcend the limitations of keywords and tap into the vast realm of possibilities.

But what happens when you don’t focus enough on topic research and rely solely on keywords?

By focusing solely on keywords, you risk becoming robots, churning out soulless content that fails to connect with real people.

Without understanding the audience’s needs, interests, and pain points, you’re just shooting in the dark. You might rank high in search results, but will anyone actually care?

Let’s break free from the keyword obsession and dive into the depths of topic research.

It’s where you discover the stories, emotions, and solutions that truly resonate. Only then can you create content that captivates, engages, and leaves a lasting impact.

How to do topic research?

  • Focus on user search intent by closely examining the SERPs, related searches, user behavior, social media platforms, etc.
  • Target core topics with high search demand by analyzing search volume and competition.
  • Find semantically relevant subtopics by first understanding the primary topic, analyzing SERPs, related search suggestions, using semantic analysis tools, etc.
  • Answer all user queries around the core Topic, starting from identifying the common queries, then answering them through comprehensive content, utilizing FAQs section, etc.
  • Include important phrases related to the Topic in various parts of your content like H1s, H2s, Body content, etc.
  • Analyze competitor’s topical coverage by analyzing the depth, diversity, URL ratings, readability, and visual elements within their content
  • Explore niche opportunities and emerging trends within the industry by staying informed about the industry trends, conducting thorough market research, identifying customer pain points, attending industry events, collaborating and networking, innovating and experimenting, etc.

Now that you have your topics ready let’s look at where you were before this step and where you are now.

Before and after topic Research

Before researching topics, you’re just shooting in the dark, creating content without a clear direction or understanding of your audience’s needs.

Now, you have laid a solid foundation for your content. You can start creating content that aligns with your audience’s interests and drives meaningful connections and delivers results.

How ALPS can help?

It’s important to note that topic research presents a unique set of challenges that can make or break your content strategy. 

  • It’s time-consuming to explore ideas and analyze their potential manually 
  • Staying up to date with trending topics can be overwhelming
  • Finding the right angle to engage the target audience 

This is where automated tools like ALPS offer a lifeline. They save time and effort by quickly analyzing data and search patterns, generating topic ideas, and providing valuable insights. 

With our automated tools, you can streamline your research, uncover hidden opportunities, and stay ahead of the competition.

With ALPS, you can get a topic-wise snapshot of your authority against competitor domains and objectively measure your chances to win in any topic.

For any chosen keyword themes, you can get the following:

  • Topic-wise benchmarked authority scores to determine the gaps against competition
  • The topics to target and how much content to create
  • The strength and weakness of your domain across categories and sub categories
  • Understand who is winning in which topic and a detailed insight into the contribution of every page in driving the competitor’s authority

Once you have found all the relevant topics you need to cover, start structuring your content.

Step 2: Content Structure

Once you have researched your topics, you might be tempted to dive into writing the content, but ALPS strongly recommends structuring the content first.

Why is it recommended to structure the content even before creating the content?

Imagine entering a cluttered room with no clear organization—frustrating, right? The same applies to your website.

A well-structured content layout is crucial even before you start creating your content.

It’s like laying a strong foundation for a building. Why? Because a solid content structure allows you to lay the foundation for successful and effective content across your website.

It saves time, reduces confusion, and enhances the overall user experience.

By doing this beforehand, you can create a logical hierarchy, plan interlinking opportunities, and optimize for search engines.

So, before diving into writing, take a moment to plan and structure your content – it’s a game-changer!

But what happens when your content is not structured?

When your website content isn’t structured before you start the creation process, chaos reigns. It’s like building a house without a blueprint. Visitors get lost in a maze of disorganized information, leading to frustration and high bounce rates.

Search engines struggle to understand your content, resulting in poor rankings and limited visibility.

The structure is the backbone that gives your content purpose, coherence, and a fighting chance for success.

How to structure the content?

  • Create hyperconnected topic clusters by auditing the existing content, identifying topics and subtopics, organizing subtopics by intent, creating hub and spoke pages, reviewing the data, etc.
  • Create Pillar pages by structuring the cluster, creating high-quality content, and uploading it to the site and interlinking.
  • Create Supporting pages by identifying the relevant subtopics, conducting keyword research, answering questions like who, what, when, etc., substantiating the answers with relevant Data Points, and user-friendly formatting.
  • Interlinking to supporting pages by identifying relevant anchor texts, contextual linking, using relevant H2s and H3s, using diverse anchor texts, balancing the distribution, and updating and refreshing links.

Pro Tips for Creating Content Structure

  • Make use of Hub & Spoke Content Architecture
  • Partnerships, Content Syndication, Guest Posts on third-party websites, Posts on forums and social media
  • References of your website to other websites

Before and after structuring the content

Before structuring the content, it’s like wandering in a maze without a map – disorganized, confusing, and time-consuming.

Now, the ideas will start falling into place, creating a clear path for readers to navigate and ensuring your message resonates powerfully.

Case Study:

Let’s take the example of a website called, whose DR rating increased from 19 to a DR rating of 51 within just 1.5 years in an extremely competitive finance niche.

About Credello:

Credello is a personal finance tool that simplifies financial decisions through personalized, on-demand recommendations.

In this example, you can see the ideal content structure created by Credello around the topic “Debt Snowball.”

If you would like to know more about this example, checkout this webinar here between the time stamp 27:25 mins to 28:24 mins.

Once you are done creating a content structure around a topic, you can start creating the content.

Step 3: Content Creation

Low-quality content has a detrimental impact on SEO performance, that fails to engage readers and hinders rankings.

Therefore, you need to make sure that the content you produce must be well-researched, original, and provide valuable insights.

Investing in high-quality content can establish authority, attract loyal followers, and enhance your online presence.

How to create quality content?

  • Choose the right keywords by researching relevant terms that align with your target audience’s search intent, looking for a balance between high search volume and low competition, using long-tail keywords for more specific targeting, and using modern tools like ALPS to analyze competitor keywords for further insights.
  • Generate content briefs and set a strong foundation by defining content objectives and target audience, researching audience’s needs, interests, pain points, outlining main sections and subtopics, figuring out H1s, H2s, H3s, etc., specifying the tone, style, format, etc.

However, to generate and use content briefs efficiently, there’s too much back and forth between the teams, difference in opinions, delay in execution, etc.

A good content brief streamlines this process and enables content writers to create high-performing content effortlessly.

Further, creating content briefs manually comes with various challenges. Here are a few listed below:  

  • Time consuming
  • Lack of clarity
  • Research limitations
  • Difficulty in outlining structure
  • Finding a unique angle
  • Balancing conciseness and comprehensiveness
  • Keeping up with trends
  • Inconsistent quality

Alternatively, you can use modern AI-driven tools like ALPS to generate SEO-optimized briefs for you in minutes.

How ALPS can help?

At ALPS, we understand the power of high-quality and unique content, so we strongly recommend people with subject matter expertise write the actual content, while ALPS can help with crafting a comprehensive content brief to assist. Our approach to content creation, guided by content briefs, ensures alignment with SEO objectives.

The ALPS content brief feature allows you to:

  • Create a comprehensive content outline to make sure you resonate with your audience and rank better on search engine results pages (SERPs)
  • Based on your preferred keywords, find top ranking pages and their benchmarked scores, to enable your content writers create performing content.
  • Gain key competitive insights from top-ranking pages on keywords, competitor pages, Questions to answer, phrases to use, headlines, titles, and meta description that are performing well
  • Eliminate guesswork, minimize research time, and speed up your content planning process
  • It improves productivity for all the content stakeholders like SEOs, Content Strategists, Content Manager’s, and content writers

PS: You can also use generative AIs like ChatGPT to write your content, but we recommend using it only when it is vetted by SMEs.

Here is an example content brief generated using ALPS for your reference for the keyword “mortgage.”

Finally, with all the weapons available in your armory, start creating high-quality, relevant content for your audience.

Pro Tips for Content Creation

  • Create high-quality 10X content
  • Ensure content comprehensiveness, depth, value, relevance, uniqueness
  • Crafting attention-grabbing headlines and subheadings (H2s, H3s), bullet points, etc
  • Utilizing relevant keywords naturally and strategically throughout the content
  • Incorporating storytelling techniques to enhance engagement and retention
  • Ensure the content meet Google E-A-T standards

Before and after generating Content Briefs

Before, writing high-quality content could have been a challenging task, especially when trying to make it comprehensive, unique, and engaging. It often requires extensive research, creativity, and attention to detail.

Now, you have a clear roadmap and direction for creating high-quality content. You can organize your thoughts, identify key points, and ensure that the content is informative, engaging, and tailored to the specific needs of the target audience.


No discussion on quality content can be complete without discussing 10X content. So here is our take on it:

10X Content and its importance in building backlinks

As its name suggests, 10X content is simply a piece of content that is 10 times better than the next best content available online around the same topic. 

But what makes it so special?

It’s a carefully crafted masterpiece that resonates deeply with its target audience, resulting in a high probability of ranking higher on SERPs for a given keyword.

Not only that, when you create content that surpasses the quality and value of existing resources by tenfold, it naturally attracts attention from other websites, bloggers, and influencers in your niche. 

They are more likely to reference and link to your content as a valuable resource. 

As more reputable websites link to your content, search engines interpret it as a validation of your expertise, and consequently, your website’s authority and credibility improve. 

However, to create a successful 10X Content, you must combine several key factors like: 

  • Originality and uniqueness: Bring something fresh, unique, and thought-provoking to the table. You want to stand out, and originality is your secret weapon.
  • Deliver immense value: It’s not enough to scratch the surface; you need to dive deep, providing detailed insights, actionable tips, or solving a complex problem. Make your audience say, “Wow, I’ve never seen it explained this way before!”
  • Supported by research and data: Make sure you incorporate credible sources, research findings, and data to back up claims and provide evidence-based insights. This boosts the credibility and trustworthiness of the content.
  • Evergreen potential: While 10X content may cover timely topics, it also has the potential to remain relevant and valuable over an extended period. It doesn’t rely solely on fleeting trends or temporary interests.
  • Well-Structured and Easy to Digest: 10X content is well-organized, with clear headings, subheadings, and bullet points that make it easy to navigate. Use concise paragraphs, break up content with visuals, and ensure readability.
  • Visually appealing: Aesthetics matter. Incorporate eye-catching visuals, interactive elements, or engaging multimedia to enhance the overall experience. Remember, people are visual creatures, and a beautifully designed piece of content can make all the difference.
  • Actionable Takeaways: 10X content goes beyond theory. Provide actionable advice, step-by-step guides, or practical tips that readers can immediately apply in their lives or work.
  • Evoke emotions: Connect with your audience on a personal level. Try to make them laugh, cry, or feel inspired. By stirring emotions, you forge a deeper connection, ensuring your content leaves a lasting impression.

How ALPS can help?

Creating content that performs well organically is not easy. It requires a fail-proof strategy that ensures the content you’re creating is of high-quality and has that fighting chance against the high-ranking competitors.

To solve this challenge, our SEO and content experts at ALPS came up with a 4 step process to create high-performing content ALPS. The 4-step process includes:

  • Analyzing Search Demand and Competitive Landscape at once
  • Understanding top-ranking competitors’ Topical Authority and measure the chances to win against them
  • Generating SEO-optimized Briefs to Close Content Gaps
  • Optimizing the Content to Drive Rank and Traffic Improvements

To know more about these steps in detail, check out our latest blog on “How to create high-performing content with ALPS.”

Case Study

Let’s take a look at a Case Study where we helped one of our clients with a Large Content Team solve the challenge of creating high-quality SEO-optimized content and its impact.

Once the content is ready, you can start optimizing your content.

Step 4: Content Optimization

Why do you need content optimization even before publishing the content?

Content optimization is crucial even before hitting that “publish” button. Let’s face it: you want your content to shine and make an impact, right? Well, here’s the deal. By optimizing your content upfront, you’re setting yourself up for success.

Publishing your content on the website and waiting for its impact to show up is time taking, and it puts you behind competition.

With modern AI SEO tools like ALPS, you can optimize your content to ensure high performance and predict its performance impact before you publish your content.

Isn’t that a great thing to have?

By doing so, you can:

  • Ensure your content aligns with the intended audience, their preferences, and search intent
  • Improve readability and provide value to your readers
  • Increase the likelihood of your copy being ranked at the top of SERPs
  • Stay ahead of the competition
  • Anticipate how search engines will interpret and rank the content
  • In case of non-performance, can improve the copy before publishing it

How to optimize content?

  • Choose the right topic and keyword to optimize the content for by finding the ones suitable for your size and authority and considering user search intent
  • Include semantically related keywords that are conceptually related
  • Cover the topic in depth by researching your competitor’s content, offering value through the use of expert insights, graphics, or original data, and answering all queries users are asking
  • Pay close attention to the technical elements by optimizing the metatags and Core Web Vitals (CWV). Though it is not a ranking factor anymore, it’s always a good idea to maintain the hygiene of your website
  • Update your content regularly to avoid content decay and ensure that your content remains up-to-date and accurate

Pro Tips for content optimization

  • Choose keywords that reflect the intent of the page
  • Limit your keyword set between 3-7 keywords to optimize your page for optimal results
  • Include your primary keyword in an exact match (if possible) in various content elements
  • If the keyword is included in a phrase match, or if synonyms are used, ensure the relevance to the page content is maintained along with grammatical accuracy
  • Avoid keyword stuffing
  • H2 tags should include other keywords mapped to the page to improve scores for all target keywords
  • Have comprehensive body content on the page, comparable to the other high ranking pages
  • Related content under each H2 tag should include semantically relevant content targeting focus keywords
  • Ensure your readability grade is in line with that of high ranking pages

Though the Subject matter experts do a great job to bring depth to the content and that resonates with the target audience, a modern AI-driven tool like ALPS can be of great help.

Before and after optimizing the content

Before optimizing your content, you were not sure how it would perform organically, struggling to gain visibility and reach your target audience.

Now, when you have done your basics right, you can create high-performing content that will start attracting the right audience, improving search rankings, and driving meaningful engagement.

However, you still might not know how exactly it will perform in terms of rank and traffic, for that we recommend using ALPS Content Simulation tool for best results.

Here’s how you can optimize your content with ALPS.

How ALPS can help?

With ALPS Content Simulation, you can benchmark your page with top ranking competitors, identify content gaps, and leverage AI to create high-performing content.

The simulation feature in ALPS allows you to:

  • Test your content based on different optimization ideas to choose the one that creates maximum performance impact
  • Optimize your page for multiple keywords simultaneously and assess overall impact
  • With easy to understand objective scores, find the exact areas you need to improve to realize maximum gains
  • Get keyword level impact of all the content changes made, it helps prioritize high value keywords when optimizing for multiple keywords at once

Try optimizing your content with our Free Content Simulation tool here.

Step 5: Building Authority

Today, establishing yourself as a trusted and influential voice in a niche is a necessity when it comes to reaching the top of search engine rankings.

Imagine having a brand that radiates expertise, credibility, and influence.

When you consistently create high-quality, valuable content that resonates with your target audience and promote it, you start gaining traction.

However, even the best content won’t gain traction if nobody sees it. Share it on social media, reach out to influencers, collaborate with industry experts, and utilize SEO strategies to amplify its reach. People will flock to your site, share your content, and link to it, signaling to search engines that you’re the real deal.

Building authority is a long-term game that requires dedication, authenticity, and a touch of charisma. It’s about engaging with your audience, building relationships, and becoming a thought leader.

How to build authority with SEO content?

  • Create exceptional and valuable content by crafting content that provides unique insights, answers common questions, or solves problems. Be a reliable source of information.
  • Optimize on-page elements by paying close attention to title tags, meta descriptions, headers, and URL structures. Optimize them with relevant keywords to improve search engine visibility.
  • Engage with your audience by encouraging comments, responding to feedback, and initiating discussions. Engaged readers are more likely to share your content and consider you an authority in your field.
  • Leverage social media by promoting your content on social platforms to increase visibility and attract a wider audience. Engaging with your followers and sharing valuable insights helps establish your authority.
  • Develop high-quality backlinks by seeking opportunities to earn backlinks from reputable and relevant websites. Partnerships, content syndication, Guest posting, influencer collaborations, and content promotion can help you secure valuable backlinks.
  • Stay updated and adapt by continuously educating yourself about industry trends, algorithm changes, and emerging topics. This enables you to create timely and relevant content that resonates with your audience.

Pro Tips to building authority with SEO content

  • Explore different types of SEO content like blog posts, articles, evergreen content, leadership pieces, etc.
  • Structure content for readability and user experience
  • Do not try to game the system by using black-hat tactics like sneaky redirects, paid links, etc.
  • Have an internal linking process in place before creating or publishing your content

Before and after building authority

Before this step, though you created high-quality content you did not know how to gain traction with your audience and search engines.

Now your content will become a trusted source of information and inspiration. Your expertise shines through, attracting a loyal audience and amplifying the reach of your content.

How ALPS can help?

With ALPS, you can monitor your website’s backlink profile, find issues, and get recommendations to maximize authority.

The Backlink audit feature within ALPS help you get the following:

  • Insights on whether you have to gain high-quality potential backlinks
  • Flag irrelevant backlinks
  • Backlink relevance
  • The overall health of your domains’ backlink profile with domain rating distribution, URL rating distribution, relevance, and most frequently occurring anchor texts
  • Know where you stand against competition on domain rating, number of backlinks, number of referring domains, and links to domain ratio

Step 6: Content Performance Measurement

Why should you measure the content performance continuously?

Measuring content performance is like holding up a mirror to your online presence.

It’s about more than just vanity metrics; it’s about understanding what resonates with your audience, what drives engagement, and what ultimately fuels growth.

Continuous measurement of your content performance allows you to adapt, refine, and evolve your strategies. It unveils the hidden insights that guide your content strategy, allowing you to tweak, refine, and captivate.

With every data point, you’re armed with knowledge, empowering you to create the content that the audience craves.

The impact of not measuring content performance continuously

  • SEO is relative, tomorrow if your competitors come up with better content, without continuous measurement you might fall behind
  • You’ll have no control over your content
  • In case of any performance decline you’ll not be able to take early corrective actions to ensure the page remains competitive
  • You’ll not be able to measure your bounce rates, rank and traffic changes, etc.
  • Understand whether the content is fulfilling the objectives and goals
  • No idea of what’s working and what’s not, to eventually help you create better content

How to measure content performance?

  • Define Goals and KPIs by identifying specific, measurable objectives aligned with your overall business strategy, and establishing key performance indicators that track progress and success towards those goals.
  • Setup Analytics by installing a tracking code or script on your website, configure goals and conversion tracking, and integrating relevant platforms or tools for comprehensive data collection and analysis.
  • Track organic search traffic by utilizing analytics tools like Google Analytics to monitor the number of visitors coming to your website through organic search results.
  • Monitor keyword rankings by using SEO tools like Google Search Console, ALPS, etc to track the positions of your target keywords in search engine result pages (SERPs) over time.
  • Analyze engagement metrics by tracking page views, time on page, bounce rate, social media interactions, and conversion rates to gain insights into how effectively your content is capturing and retaining audience attention.

Pro Tips for content performance measurement

  • Watch out for “content decay” and consistently update and refresh your content with new information, optimize for relevant keywords, and actively promote it to maintain its relevance and visibility over time
  • Keep tabs on ever changing search algorithm updates, audience preferences, technological advancements
  • Remember that content performance measurement is an ongoing process, conduct regular content audit, monitor content performance regularly
  • Regularly review your data, adapt your strategies, and refine your content to achieve better results

Before and after measuring content performance

Before measuring your content performance, you didn’t have enough data on your content’s performance impact or effectiveness, relying on guesswork and assumptions.

Now you have clear insights into your content’s success or failure with concrete data, empowering you to make informed decisions, optimize strategies, and drive impactful results.

However, it might not be easy to keep track of all the performance metrics manually. Because it involves tracking various data from multiple sources, this is where ALPS Measurement and Reporting features can be of great help.

ALPS helps you govern your SEO program with comprehensive and up-to-date reporting. With the ability to measure, track, and compare organic search performance, businesses can gain deep insights and make data-driven decisions to optimize their SEO strategies for maximum impact and success.

How ALPS can help?

With ALPS Measurement and reporting features, you can comprehensively measure, track, and compare organic search performance over time.

The ALPS features allows you to:

  • Find all the relevant SEO performance data in one place, identify issues, and plan corrective measures
  • Track changes in rank, traffic, and conversions for all the relevant keywords
  • Track performance trends of every page for any keyword category


Creating SEO optimized content and building backlinks through it requires a strategic approach.

Use a framework that gives you enough meat to let you grow holistically.

This 6-step approach we discussed in this guide, partnered with modern AI-driven enterprise SEO platforms like ALPS, helps you create content that performs well organically. The 6 steps are as follows:

  • Step 1: Topic Research
  • Step 2: Content Structure
  • Step 3: Content Creation
  • Step 4: Content Optimization
  • Step 5: Building Authority
  • Step 6: Content Performance Measurement

Following this approach, you can research topics that can give most traction, create high-quality performing content, establish authority, attract organic traffic, and achieve long-term success with your SEO content.

About ALPS

ALPS is a leading enterprise SEO platform that transforms how enterprises do their organic marketing. ALPS is built to solve critical SEO challenges like unpredictability, complexity, and high time to results with data-driven insights and the ability to predict the performance impact before committing to changes. ALPS is powered by sophisticated AI technology that reverse engineers Google’s algorithm to make SEO more agile, efficient, and predictable for enterprises. Additionally, ALPS offers dedicated client support and service packs designed to fill competency gaps in any SEO team.