The biggest content marketing mistake that people make is to produce content with the primary aim of selling products or promoting a company rather than promoting value to others. Good content is not promotional – it should always provide value first, whether that be educational or entertainment value. Content marketing is about building authority and trust in your company so that, over time, search engines like Google prefer ranking your website over your competitors. Ultimately, this will make a difference to the number of leads and conversions you see on your score sheet, but it should not be the primary objective of your content marketing efforts.

In the words of Henry Ford: “Quality means doing it right when no one is looking”. This ethos should also apply to content and SEO. Quality should always precede quantity. However, while it is completely true that you should always be creating the highest quality content for your users and search engines, there is also power in knowing where you stand against your competitors. This is where understanding content velocity and link velocity will give you an advantage.

What is content velocity?

Content velocity refers to the amount of content a brand publishes on its website during a certain period of time. Calculating your content velocity and comparing it to a competitor will help you see how impactful your content is.

If you want to compare your content velocity to a competitor within a month/week, you need to measure how much content you publish for that week/month versus how much content they put out as well. For example, let’s say:

  • You are creating one high-quality piece of content on a weekly/monthly basis.
  • A competitor is creating 2x quality pieces of content on a weekly/monthly basis.
  • Another competitor is creating 5x quality pieces of content on a weekly/monthly basis.

Who wins? The competitor creating 5x quality pieces of content on a weekly/monthly basis. At a basic level, you can keep an eye on what your competitors are publishing over a six-month window to get a sense of how frequently they are posting content. If you want to delve a little further, you can utilise online tools such as SEMrush to filter all the blog pages on a particular site. Then, you can put that list into another tool like Screaming Frog that will extract all the dates when these were published.

Why does content velocity matter?

As we mentioned above, if you want to build brand awareness and engage visitors, producing quality content should be a matter of habit. However, how often you publish content and the content length are important factors for other reasons too:

To outperform the competition

If you are publishing content twice a month, Competitor A is publishing 3x a month, and Competitor B is publishing once a month, you are in the middle. It’s true, the user is getting lots of great content on a particular subject matter, but most of it is coming from Competitor A. If you want to outperform the competition, you need to ensure you have those people clicking on your links and approaching you for new business instead.

SEO gains

The more content you publish on your website, the more pages you will have on your site. Search engines like Google can crawl and index these. This can help improve your search engine rankings over time. It also informs search engines that you are reliable at adding up-to-date, popular content.

Improves the experience of a user

If brands are not providing what customers are seeking, it is all too easy for a user to click off a website and return to the search results page. Your website content needs to consistently provide helpful information and value for people to find it useful. If your content is recognised for its quality and usefulness, it will help to establish you as industry experts, and signal to potential customers and search engines that your site is trustworthy enough to engage with and buy from.

To aid this process, your users will need to have a positive experience whilst on your website. They will not be spending precious time on a website that is difficult to use and find the information they need. Users what their experience to be seamless, quick, and personable, meaning you need to have the content they want to see, when and how they want to see it.

What is link velocity?

Link velocity refers to the number of backlinks you acquire over a given timeframe. Links are a weighty factor in Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) activity and link velocity is also important to factor in. The higher the link velocity – the speed at which you land the links to your website – the faster your recent articles will start ranking and the more likely you will outrank your competitors.

How do you calculate link velocity?

You can use software such as Ahrefs, SEMrush or SE Rankings to identify how many backlinks and referring domains point to a particular page on your website and when they were acquired over a certain period. You can repeat this exercise for your competitors over the same timeframe. This will allow you to measure your link velocity against competitor link velocity.

Why does backlink velocity matter?

Link velocity matters because quality backlinks from authoritative websites can improve your chances of ranking for your target keywords in Google search results.

It is important to note that, while link velocity is important, a high link velocity on its own doesn’t necessarily equate with a higher Google ranking. While backlinks play a vital part of ranking well on Google, it is not the only influencing factor that search engines like Google take into account. Google also considers things like the quality of backlinks, the anchor text used, and how quickly the links are required. For example, if you receive too many backlinks too quickly or your acquisition of links doesn’t appear to be organic, Google may decide you are practicing black hat SEO and may penalise you by ranking you lower in search results.

In conclusion, the key is to build quality links consistently. Link velocity combined with content velocity on your website will have a significant positive affect on your ranking activity. So long as the links and content are high-quality of course!

Keep new links flowing to your website regularly for months in a row and you’ll soon notice your website climbing the Google ranks within your niche.