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JoomConnect Blog

JoomConnect is the Marketing Agency for MSPs. We strive to help IT companies get more leads and grow. We rock at web design, content marketing, campaigns, SEO, marketing automation, and full marketing fulfillment.

When an MSP Blog Goes Wrong

When an MSP Blog Goes Wrong

If your blog is attracting the wrong type of traffic, the best option could be to unpublish it. Read on to learn why deleting traffic-generating blogs may be the best thing you can do for your SEO.

An Off-Brand Blog Goes Wrong

We often write about the importance of your blogs as a traffic generator. In a perfect world, every blog that catches on would be directly related to selling one of your services. 

Unfortunately, that isn't always the case, and an 'off-brand blog that isn't directly related to your service, can drive traffic to your site. When this happens, you can find that your website has seen a dramatic influx of traffic. This is excellent news if the blog is about a service you want to promote, such as managed IT or cybersecurity. However, this is a best-case scenario. More often than not, the blog can be only tangentially related to your service. For example, you may have written a blog about the ten ways to make your computer faster. 

The problem is that most of this traffic will never convert; they are there to read your blog and leave once done. One thing to understand is that this isn't necessarily a bad thing because Google loves to see websites receive traffic, especially websites they have chosen to “promote,” by making it a featured snippet.

We have discussed methods to make the most of these types of blogs; however, there are times when the off-brand blog is so well-received that it overshadows the message you are trying to convey and your brand. 

Here’s a perfect example for us. Before the pandemic, we would build some fun content about Crockpot Thursdays (we would make lunch for the team and would sometimes build a fun little video about it or do a skit). This was, by far, our most popular content on social media. No, it didn’t sell any of our services, but it made it far easier to get our content out. Going “viral” (we’re using this term as a way to represent sudden growth of a small portion of content, not necessarily to mean that your content is reaching global audiences) isn’t a bad thing, even if it’s for content that isn’t 100% about selling your services. In fact, you will probably never “go viral” for a piece of content that strictly tries to sell or promote something. 

Back to the blog about speeding up a computer: while there is a technology theme, some people who read the blog aren't interested in MSP services. This means once they read the blog, they leave the site. How could one blog generate hundreds, if not thousands of visitors to your website? There are a couple of reasons why this could happen:

Your Blog Is a Featured Snippet: A featured snippet is Google's way of letting searchers know that your blog is the best answer to a question. A featured snippet is often called “position zero,” meaning it is above the ads and the first thing a searcher sees when looking for an answer. A featured snippet implies that Google vouches for your level of expertise and feels that your blog is the best answer. When this happens, your blog becomes the featured (snippet) answer and, as such, receives an extraordinary amount of traffic.

Your Blog Trends in Social Media. We often recommend taking advantage of social media to engage with your audience. Social media is an invaluable tool because it easily allows your content to be shared quickly. A side effect of this is that the content can spread (trend) even faster and to an audience outside your user base once it gains momentum. Of course, having your blog trend is a great thing, as it gains attention and drives traffic. However, as in the case of the blog, most of these visitors won't be well qualified to convert.

Why Is Too Much Traffic a Problem?

Traffic isn’t a problem if it’s qualified. Qualified traffic is visitors who visit your website because they are interested in your services and, as such, are more likely to convert. That’s good stuff and something all businesses should strive towards. However, when an off-brand blog or social media post drives visitors to your website, the possibility is great that some of the traffic will not be qualified. 

Google usually rewards websites that generate traffic with a higher page rank, so having too much traffic doesn’t seem like something an organization should be concerned about. The more traffic a website receives, the higher its page position will be, giving them an advantage in attracting potential leads over its competitors.

However, the benefits of high traffic depend on how much traffic is coming to your website to learn more about the services you offer as an MSP. If the influx of traffic is searching for different information, there can be a negative consequence, especially if there is a significant amount of unqualified traffic. Here are three ways unqualified traffic can hinder your organization’s goal.

It Leads to Confusion: An increase in traffic is excellent news if the blog is about a service you want to promote, such as managed IT or cybersecurity. However, this is a best-case scenario, as the off-brand blog will be only tangentially related to your service more often than not. For example, you may have written a blog about the ten ways to make your computer faster. While there is a technology theme to the blog, most people who read the blog aren’t interested in your MSP services and will leave once they have read the blog, resulting in a higher bounce rate.

Increased Bounce Rate: Best practice regarding high bounce rates is to treat them as a rejection of your content. The remedy is to reevaluate your message and provide visitors to your website with a better experience. However, in the case of an off-brand blog driving traffic, the opposite is occurring. Instead of leaving because they find your content lacking, your audience finds it engaging. They leave your website not because they are unhappy but because they have found the answer to their question.

Time Sorting Data: If you want to understand what the collected data means, you will need to spend time sorting it out. The only way to do this is by creating filters or views within Google Analytics to sort the visitors only interested in your blog from those interested in your services as an MSP, which can be time-consuming and even frustrating.

Turn It Off

We often advocate for keeping traffic-generating blogs regardless of their content because they provide many benefits to your SEO. A popular piece of content, even if it is a little off-brand, can build trust with Google and make it easier to rank for all the other things that matter. It’s all about authority.

That being said, SEO is as much art as science, and the one-size-fits-all approach to SEO offered by many marketing agencies isn’t going to work. Your MSP is unique, and so must be the content marketing plan you’ve developed to promote your services. If you feel that the blog is distracting and costing your team productivity, despite the traffic it brings to your website, you should remove it from the website.

However, you should understand that shutting down a traffic-generating blog will hurt your SEO before you do. These adverse effects can be a reduction in traffic, a lower position in page rank, and, if not done carefully, 404’s (broken links) errors if you had other pages linked to the page you removed. However, if planned, removing a page can have a minimal effect on your website’s overall health; and your SEO will recover over time.

Does Your Content Represent Your Service as an MSP?

Managed IT is a unique industry, full of technical terms and jargon. If you hope to attract an audience, you need to ensure that your content takes complicated concepts and can translate them into something the average office manager can understand. Moreover, your content should reflect the issues that can affect their business’ bottom-line instead of the generic “tech talk” many marketing agencies provide.

In Other Words, Don’t Panic

If a random blog post from three years ago suddenly pulls 30% of the new traffic to your website, you aren’t in danger. It’s important to follow the trail and see what led to it happening (are the hits organic, are they social, are they from a referral?). If suddenly a bunch of retirement home seniors are sharing a blog article about password best practices, it probably won’t result in new business, but Google still sees the attention as a positive.

If your content isn’t converting or isn’t attracting the type of visitors that you need, it may be time for an SEO audit. An SEO audit is the first step to determine whether or not your SEO is performing as expected and is essential in determining the overall health of your website. If you’re interested in scheduling an appointment, call us today at 888-546-4384.

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