I recently created a blog on engineering management and I'm writing The Engineering Manager's Survival Guide. My blog is not well referenced at all and the space is pretty crowdy.
Here is how I get on first page of google search in 24 hours ⬇
I used Ahrefs to search for long-tail keywords describing well the intent of readers who could be interested by my content. I read the existing content, look how first results were referenced, the volume of search, the site authority, the number and quality of back links. It was a first excellent exercise as some keywords that looked at first view very easy to break into are in fact not at all. On the other hand, some I though pretty complex to position are in fact easy.
I finally picked "how to become a lead developer" and "how to become an engineering manager". For both of them, and following ahrefs rating, it looks like a great content and a few backlinks are enough to reach the top 10 (aka Keyword Difficulty of 1 or 2).
Each article is about 800 - 900 words. I tried to craft a content more relevant, more complete and that better answers the question that most of the other first page results. My goal is to deliver a useful and enjoyable content to the reader, SEO being a great bonus. I used the keywords as the title of the articles.
For a new website, the indexation can take a few days or weeks, so I asked for indexation in google search console, it took about 2 hours.
I looked where my articles were on the search results, browsing in private mode, to make it less contextualized, and I guess closer of what other people see. Both articles were in the top 50 without having any back links to them.
I shared the first post on hacker news, I had almost no upvote but it looks like a few websites are crawling and indexing the hacker news content, so I got 3 backlinks, low quality backlinks but with "dofollow".
I decided to syndicate the first post on Medium and on Devto, means sharing the exact same content, adding my original post as a canonical url and a link at the bottom of the article. These links in post are "nofollow" but contribute a bit to rank on the chosen keywords and to contextualize your content. I used the exact same keywords in the link text.
For the second post, I will try to write a new original content on Devto and to link to the post to give more context and allow the reader to dive deeper in the topic.
After 24h, my first post ranks in the first page of results on Google! 🚀
Even if not having a bunch of backlinks and even if the authority of my site is very low (for now!), this was a decent content strategy.
Please note I'm not a SEO expert, these are only my learnings:
We often read that all we have to do is to create good content and readers will come. It's true at some point but you need to first work on a bit to make the content easy to find in the first place, and it's difficult with a brand new website and no established audience.
I hope this post will help you, don't hesitate if you have any questions or if you want to share tips & tricks that I could use to better reference my second post. 💡
Have a great day!