Where to start

New to the Ercule library? Sign up for our newsletter, or check out our most popular guided resources below.

3-hour keyword strategy

A simple framework and a set of exercises to quickly and efficiently build a keyword strategy.

πŸ“™ Guide

The latest articles in your inbox

The Ercule newsletter gives you updates and tips on SEO, content analytics, and content performance.

SEO topic hub

This topic hub links to all of our posts about SEO, including analytics, algorithm updates, and content guidance.

πŸ“™ Topic Hub

All posts

#28: PLC = TLC

How to get started with product-led content by focusing on your existing library. Integrating your product in a way that's useful for readers (and easy to do).

🍿 Newsletter

A product-led approach to updating content

Ready to embrace a product-led approach? No need to create entirely new content. Start with your existing library. It's quicker and more effective.

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#27: It could be BMail

Sites that you rely on for backlink equity might not be helping it at all. Let's look at 'nofollow' links, relationship ('rel') tags, and how to deal with them.

🍿 Newsletter

Nofollow tags and a smarter backlink strategy

Sites that you rely on for backlink equity might actually be blocking you altogether. Let's look at 'nofollow' links and how to deal with them.

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#26: No content weft behind 🧢

The value of internal links, assessing your link data in Google Search Console, how to fix up site's links, and start building a smart internal strategy.

🍿 Newsletter

How to build an internal link strategy

Internal links offer a kindness for your readers and a better conversion rate for your site. They help with organic performance, too. Here's how to get started.

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#25: Documenting your content strategy

Documentation is a basic task – and that's a strength! How to make your content strategy better (and easier) by writing out a single source of truth.

🍿 Newsletter

Why you should document your content strategy

It's tempting to skip the basic steps of content strategy – especially when you're experienced. But the benefits of writing out those early steps can be huge.

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#24: A checklist for content UX

Sometimes an image on your blog can ruin the user experience and search performance. We use a content optimization checklist for those finer points of UX.

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How images can drag down search and content performance

A look at how image files influence user experience (UX) and search performance. Tips for how to use images. Plus a checklist for optimizing blog page UX.

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#23: A new guide + tool from Ercule

A strategy guide for writers and marketers interested in using (basic) analytics to boost performance of their site’s existing content. No experience required.

🍿 Newsletter

Introducing Ercule's guide to content optimization strategy

Our guide includes a crash-course in analytics, a tutorial for exporting Google Analytics data, a tool to crunch it all, and tips for getting started.

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#22: Getting aligned

Optimizing a blog post begins with making sure structure and language (especially keywords) are consistent. Our action item checklist will get your started.

🍿 Newsletter

A checklist for blog optimization and keyword alignment

The first step to optimizing a blog page is aligning its language and structure. Download this action item checklist and start aligning all of your content.

πŸ“— Field Note

Building a content optimization strategy for traffic, leads, and revenue

How to optimize your content to increase page performance and organic traffic.

πŸͺ΄ Content Optimization

#21: About that blog post from six years ago

How a content optimization strategy helps you analyze, prioritize, and begin updating your entire content library.

🍿 Newsletter

A strategy for optimizing old content

How to start analyzing and updating your content library. We made a tool for it. No data expertise required. We'll walk you through Google Analytics, too.

πŸ“— Field Note

#20: Find new content in the stars

How successful posts can inform your content strategy moving forward, and how to make sure those pages stay successful.

🍿 Newsletter

What to do with a page that has amazing performance metrics

So your page is high-traffic and high-conversion. Congrats! Here's how to build on that momentum and keep the page competitive for the long term.

πŸ“— Field Note

#19: Why lemons deserve your attention

How to identify hopeless blog posts and what to do with them so they don't drag down the rest of your site and lead gen.

🍿 Newsletter

When a blog post fails in all metrics

So your blog post is low-traffic, high-bounce, low-conversion... a total dud. More than falling flat, it might be harming your overall site. Here's what to do with that hopeless content.

πŸ“— Field Note

#18: Encourage your wallflowers

Your blog's conversion rate is amazing but too few leads are actually seeing it. Let's look at why traffic volume is low, and how you can increase it.

🍿 Newsletter

When high-conversion blogs don't get the traffic they deserve

What to do when a post's conversion rate is high but overall traffic is way too low. How to fix the optimization and distribution problems that affect traffic.

πŸ“— Field Note

#17: Popular, but lazy

Your blog post went viral, but it's not converting leads. Let's look at why that might be, and how you can improve it. (And also imagine robots making pizzas.)

🍿 Newsletter

When popular pages have a high bounce rate

A high-traffic page is great, but if it also has a high bounce rate then it's not actually converting leads. Let’s look at common causes and solutions.

πŸ“— Field Note

What’s the difference between bounce rate and exit rate?

Bounce Rate is how many visits start on a page, then end without another pageview. Exit Rate is how many views of a page are the last one in a visit.

πŸ“— Field Note

What is direct traffic in Google Analytics, and how can we figure out where it comes from?

Google Analytics uses 'Direct Traffic' as a catch-all for unidentified traffic. A lot of it comes from key channels like email, ads, and social. You can track that data better and decrease Direct Traffic bloat at the same time.

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#16: Direct traffic, idk

If you feel like you don’t have an answer to the revenue question, be assured that that’s pretty normal. And you can get way ahead of the game by starting to tackle it. Here are some places to start.

🍿 Newsletter

#15: Where is this revenue coming from???

If you feel like you don’t have an answer to the revenue question, be assured that that’s pretty normal. And you can get way ahead of the game by starting to tackle it. Here are some places to start.

🍿 Newsletter

How to track revenue from organic search

If you feel like you don’t have an answer to the revenue question, be assured that that’s pretty normal. And you can get way ahead of the game by starting to tackle it. Here are some places to start.

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#14: What content people need to know about paid search

The paid team has data that helps organic strategy, and the organic team has content skills that improve paid conversion. Here’s how to bridge the gap between teams.

🍿 Newsletter

How organic search and paid search teams can work together

Paid search generates data that organic teams can use. Organic teams have writing skills that can improve paid search budgets. Stop competing with each other! Start building an alliance. Here's how.

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#13: An issue about smooth jazz 🎷πŸ₯±

Looking at the Retained Entrances metric to see how many visitors a page is *actually* engaging. (Hint: it's not always the page with the best traffic numbers.)

🍿 Newsletter

How to calculate Retained Entrances

For content performance analysis, entrance metrics alone aren’t very useful without factoring in the bounce rate. To understand engagement in real terms, we track Retained Entrances.

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Should you copy UTM parameters from one page to another? And if so, how?

Generally, you shouldn't have UTM parameters on internal links, but there is one specific case where it can be useful.

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#12: MUM = next BERT???

Google's latest computational update brings exciting potential for organic B2B marketing.

🍿 Newsletter

What to do with MUM, Google's latest computational model

Google's latest computational update is MUM (Multitask Unified Model). MUM will be better than its predecessors at understanding topics, beyond keywords. And for organic search marketing, this could be a huge opportunity.

πŸ“— Field Note

#11: The pages are *eating* each other! Is that a problem?

Keyword cannibalization, and why it's maybe a positive.

🍿 Newsletter

Is keyword cannibalization really a problem?

When numerous pages on your site will rank for the same keyword or topic, SEO people call it β€œkeyword cannibalization.” It's actually a good problem to have, and sometimes an opportunity to leverage.

πŸ“— Field Note

What is a keyword strategy?

A keyword strategy is a prioritized list of which specific keywords you’re aiming to rank for in search.

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#10: Cue the dramatic hamster

Backlinks vs. inferred links, Google changing your page titles on SERP, Gravy and cold email schooling.

🍿 Newsletter

Google is changing your page titles on SERPs

Your pages might start looking different on search result pages. If Google thinks your title tags aren't clear, concise, and accurate, they're going to change its appearance.

πŸ“— Field Note

Goodbye backlinks, hello inferred links

Are you still pursuing a backlink acquisition strategy? Google is not a fan. But more importantly, it might not be the best use of your time. That's where inferred linking comes in.

πŸ“— Field Note

#9: 🎢 This issue has a soundtrack 🎢

Content velocity and your pipeline, customers blocking your Google Analytics trackers, cooking spray in outer space.

🍿 Newsletter

A lot of your customers might be blocking Google Analytics

More and more users are blocking Google Analytics trackers. This doesn't mean you should give up on tracking data. Just a reminder to base your strategy on your goals - not Google's.

πŸ“— Field Note

Content velocity, and why it’s critical for content marketing performance

Defining 'content velocity' and identifying the steps in your production pipeline that might be slowing down your team.

πŸ“— Field Note

Make friends with branded traffic

Branded search traffic can feel like a content marketer's enemy, but don't discount it altogether. Branded search data can open up conversations that lead to new content opportunities.

πŸ“— Field Note

Paid search from scratch

Tips for small startups who feel ready to try a paid search campaign, courtesy of Vincent Barr and Operator.

πŸ“— Field Note

#8: 30% more cuddles

Paid search for small teams, ways to leverage branded traffic data, "About This Result" updates, Rick Astley's archaeological importance.

🍿 Newsletter

#7: SEO Speedwagon

Why paid search depends on quality content, a cookie-consent game, looking into Google Search Insights, and better web accessibility practice.

🍿 Newsletter

#6: It's like living in the future!

Boosting site speed by cleaning JavaScript, the marketing power of shared value, nurture tracks as a distribution channel.

🍿 Newsletter

The nurture tracks need you

A lot of companies send nurture tracks to new users or new leads (or both). Content marketers can serve this potentially huge audience – and boost their content performance along the way.

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Great marketing is about creating shared value

When you quote someone for a piece, they’ll probably share that piece with the world. It's community-building that benefits everyone's business. So, how can you make your own marketing projects more valuable by including others?

πŸ“— Field Note

Clean up your Javascript

Some JavaScript can be useful. But too much JavaScript will slow down your site, frustrate your visitors, and hurt your rankings and conversions.

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#5: How sketchy could it be?

Simple search metrics that your team will like, opt-in banner puzzle games, and everything you need to know about Google Tag Manager.

🍿 Newsletter

Google Tag Manager, Schmoogle Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager is a way of putting JavaScript tags on your site – and managing them – more easily. Activating (or re-activating) it for your site can lead to some quick wins for your site performance and lead tracking.

πŸ“— Field Note

What is "share of search"?

Share of search is a relatively new metric. It helps you make the case for visibility in organic search – and therefore, in investment in content – in a way that should get your colleagues excited.

πŸ“— Field Note

#4: Hieronymous Bosch levels of detail

Giant image files, more on Core Web Vitals and Google Search Console, URL lengthening, and other nice things.

🍿 Newsletter

#3: We miss you, Kid Pix

Third-party cookies are going away. Should you care? We use the word "Romanesque", a critical metric most keyword strategies overlook, and captioning and content calendaring.

🍿 Newsletter

Why keywords need a relevance metric

Determining the relevance of a topic to your brand is a core marketing skill, and it's overshadowed these days by big data metrics like search volume and competition.

πŸ“— Field Note

#2: GPT-3 is coming for your job, or it isn't

How you should relate to AI copywriting tools, and our new guide to content outlining. Plus getting out of Zoom meetings. And pugs! (That last one’s at the end, you gotta earn it.)

🍿 Newsletter

Does GPT-3 write everything for everyone forever now?

GPT-3 is generating a lot of buzz among marketing folks. Does this mean that copywriters and content marketers should be gearing up for a war against the machines?

πŸ“— Field Note

#1: The first one

Core Web Vitals, things to worry about with Hubspot, rappers, and malware. (Well, we're not sending malware, we just mention it.)

🍿 Newsletter

Outlining for content performance

This guide will show you how to generate outlines for clear content that is built with purpose and primed to perform.

πŸ– Content Outlining

Building out a B2B marketing department

A quick breakdown of where to start.

πŸ“— Field Note

How to serve language-specific sites

Lots of ways to serve language-specific sites, but just one that we recommend.

πŸ“— Field Note

How to build a keyword strategy in 3 hours

Getting started with a thoughtful, data-driven SEO strategy in 3 hours.

🌈 Keyword Strategy

Attack of the giant .jpgs

A big culprit we're seeing for slow site speed these days is oversized images.

πŸ“— Field Note

How to pick seed keywords

A short list of places to look for building your seed keyword list.

πŸ““ Article

Why invest in organic search?

Aside from its importance as a marketing channel in general, organic search creates trust, doesn't depend on spend, and is a helpful lever for thinking about your strategy and site in general.

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Building keyword strategies efficiently

You don't have to spend a lot of time to build a really high-quality keyword strategy.

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Don't worry too much about duplicate content

A lot of content marketers freak out about duplicate content, but they don't need to. Here's why.

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How small companies and startups should choose a content management system

Choosing a CMS is one of the most important decisions you’ll make with your marketing tech stack.

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Starting from zero with content marketing

Content marketing is hard. Here's how to build a minimum viable content marketing engine.

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How to speed up team learning

Your team's most important skill isn't writing, or promoting, or crunching engagement numbers. It's learning.

πŸ“— Field Note

Develop topic expertise by hanging out with your Services team

Content marketers assigned to complex SaaS products? Don't stress. Team members and colleagues can help you write well about the tech.

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What marketers can learn from developer advocates

Marketers can learn a lot from developers, as one developer advocate explains – especially those developers who resist very the idea of β€˜marketing’.

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Comparison page best practices

How to put together a page comparing your product to your competitors.

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Markdown makes content marketing easier

Why Markdown is a helpful tool for content marketers.

πŸ“— Field Note

Product positioning and messaging should drive content

Product marketing is about finding the best way to talk and think about your product. Here’s how that applies to content performance and SEO.

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Google Discover for B2B marketers

Google Discover isn't worth prioritizing for most B2B marketers right now.

πŸ“— Field Note

Host your B2B blog on Medium? No, but read on

Why you probably shouldn't host your B2B blog on Medium, and what to do instead.

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Marketing attribution setup for B2B companies

A simple marketing attribution model that is realistic to implement but supports sophisticated analytics.

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Speed is a feature

Speed really matters for content performance – and we're talking more than just a site's basic load time.

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Building the idea-to-content pipeline

You can create content on a daily basis without compromising quality or draining your labor budget. A content pipeline can be low-touch, high-yield.

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Google's motivations

Why does Google do what it does? Self-interest. Make peace with this fact and you can start building a more robust web presence on (and beyond) Google.

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Useful questions for user tests

Use unmoderated user testing to learn how visitors read your site.

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Content stack audit

Our content stack audit covers all the things that matter for content performance on your site.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Basics

Make sure your site avoids fundamental issues that can hamper performance.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Usability

Usability is surprisingly important for overall site performance.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Images

Images are a critical way to communicate, but can also cause problems for content performance.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Navigation

Help your visitors easily find what they're looking for.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Calls to action

Build calls to action that are easy to find and use.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Forms

Keep your forms as easy to use as possible.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Content tagging

Prevent common problems that make your site harder to find on search and in social media.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Search engine friendliness

Make your site easy to use for search engines.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Analytics

Make sure you're tracking performance correctly.

βœ… Content Stack Audit

Principles for driving content performance

Principles for building content that performs.

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Good questions for customer interviews

How to interview customers and get their words into your content strategy.

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Building trust with your site visitors

Is trust more important than attention?

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A/B testing for startups

What startups should focus on for A/B testing – even if they don't generate much traffic data. Traditional A/B principles can be applied to smaller scale tests.

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The 5-minute SEO audit

How to focus on SEO fundamentals.

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Programs, not campaigns

Why better (and better-performing) marketing is ongoing, iterative, and value-focused.

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Help your customers unsubscribe

Why email marketers should make it easy for receipients to unsubscribe.

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Marketing without Google Analytics

What does a post-Google-Analytics future look like? Do you even need it today?

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Less data, more context

At a minimum, users, sessions, and pageviews, and of course entrances, bounce rates, and retained sessions.

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404 page checklist

The most important things to do on your 404 page.

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Google Analytics visitor opt-out Javascript

Let your visitors opt out of Google Analytics tracking.

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What data do content marketers actually need?

The measures that matter for content marketers.

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Finding and using customer language

Customer language is what your customers say – and how they search for you.

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How to organize your blog

There's a more flexible way to think about your blog.

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To write for humans, understand robots

Writing for humans these days means you also need to write with robots (data and algorithms) in mind.

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Can longer forms have better engagement?

Yes, sometimes they can! Here's why.

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Search experience optimization

A better way to think about the term "SEO".

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How live chat can improve content performance

Live chat doesn't help directly, but indirectly it can make a big difference.

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What is the content stack?

The content stack involves production, distribution, conversion, strategy, and analytics; here's how these layers work together.

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How to set up your nav bar for the best SEO

Structuring your navigation bar is mostly about usability.

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Simplify, or your users will do it for you

Your users can't take in everything you want to say right away. How can you pick strategically?

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Content expiration

Why it's important to expire (or better yet, update!) your out-of-date content

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Young warrior

An important story.

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