To share exactly how, I made an infographic mapping out not one, but six foolproof, can’t-miss strategies that real-life people (including me!) have used to top the charts for specific keywords.
These methods draw on advice and examples from Neil Patel, Brian Dean, the folks right here at Buffer, Noah Kagan, and a few others.
Check out the flowchart for a high-level overview of how to create the top content on any topic, then read on as I get down into specific how-tos for each method.
6 strategies to rank for any search term
Flowchart magic by Laura Kranz (my wife and partner at GradLime).
A quick look at each option
I’ll overview each of these approaches, then drill down into how to choose the right one.
Do the research and write the first article of its kind
Occasionally you’ll stumble across a search term idea and find that nobody’s tried to rank for it. There are no really satisfactory results in sight. When that happens, you have the rare opportunity to write the first piece of content on the matter.
Write something far better than the #1 result
This is probably what you’ll end up doing most of the time. Someone will have an adequate piece out there that gets ranked first—but it could be more thorough, more current, more visually appealing, etc. That’s where you come in! Pull out the stops and write the end-all, authoritative, ultimate post on that topic.
Write an authoritative article from an alternative perspective
Sometimes the #1 result is really, really well done—but you and the people in your niche have a different perspective or conclusion on the matter. In those cases, you write the article your audience needs to read.
Think of it this way: if #2 is all-around better, #3 is narrower.
Write the ultimate list of awesome articles
When it’s clear that most of the space on the first results page is occupied by awesome content (some of which may be yours!), it’s time to go broader. Make the ultimate list of ultimate articles, giving people a detailed look at what’s out there.
You’re doing the work of pulling all the awesome content together, trimming the overlap, and saving the people searching for the term the time it takes to research all the awesome articles out there.
Try a new format
Don’t rewrite already-amazing articles. Instead, find ways to add value by presenting them in new formats. Put the high-ranking awesome content into an infographic, make a video walkthrough, or host a webinar—add value by putting that awesome content into a different format.
If you know you want to rank for a keyword and you don’t have time to create an original article, find a top-notch copywriter and/or designer to create it for you