Evergreen content is content that revolves around a topic always relevant to readers, regardless of the current news cycle or season. Its name comes from the evergreen—a plant that retains its green leaves all year round.
What is evergreen content?
Evergreen content is content that is continually relevant and stays “fresh” for readers over a long period of time – as the name implies. You may think that all online content is sustainable; after all, a blog post doesn’t just disappear after you publish it. But evergreen content is different. It continues to be relevant long past its publication date, with search traffic growing over time.
Why is evergreen content important?
The return on investment for evergreen content is incredible. One evergreen article can sustain a business for years. Because evergreen content often ranks high with search engines, it’s found more and attracts organic traffic at a consistent rate over the long-term without a decline.
Common evergreen formats
There are a variety of common evergreen formats that creators can use to keep their content fresh and engaging.
Listicles, which provide a numbered list of items on a specific topic, are used to educate, inform, or entertain readers.
How-tos provide step-by-step instructions on how to complete a specific task or solve a problem.
Product reviews can also be evergreen, providing insights and opinions on a product that will remain relevant as long as the product is available.
Other evergreen formats
Other evergreen content formats can include educational resources, interviews, and expert roundups, among others. As long as something remains relevant for extended periods of time without much adjustment, it can be considered evergreen. It should be informative, educational, or entertaining in a way that transcends current events or trends, allowing it to remain relevant and useful to readers over an extended period of time.
What doesn’t qualify as evergreen content?
Content that is time-sensitive, trendy, or focused on a specific event or news story does not qualify as evergreen content. This may include:
- Seasonal content
For example, articles about the outcome of an election or the winner of a sports game may be popular and engaging for a short period, but they quickly become outdated and lose their relevance.
Similarly, content that is tied to a particular holiday, season, or trend may not be evergreen because it only remains relevant for a short time. Evergreen content is designed to be timeless and valuable to readers regardless of when it is consumed.
How to create evergreen content
Evergreen content must be timeless. To be timeless, evergreen content must be SEO-friendly, relevant, and high quality. When you make evergreen content make sure these things are true.
1. Pick precise topics
Picking specific and relevant topics will ensure your audience will continue to find the content you write for them. Choosing topics that are too broad makes it harder to rank in search engine results, and may also invite unqualified visitors to your site.
2. Show authority
Provide an expert understanding of the topics you write about. Include thought leadership, qualified sources, and comprehensive information about the topic.
3. Make the format easy to follow
Use lists, tips, and visuals to ease the flow of the content and make the information easily digestible.
4. Optimize for search engines
Use regular keyword use and technical SEO best practices to improve search engine rankings and organic search traffic.
5. Repurpose content
Identify top-performing content and repurpose it into additional formats. Parse.ly’s Evergreen Overview Report was created specifically for identifying evergreen candidates. Using this report, you can quickly spot top articles and pages that can be turned into webinars, podcast topics, explainer videos, or any other format that resonates with your audience.
Examples of evergreen content
You’ve probably read a lot of evergreen content in your life. Articles that answer questions like “how to lose weight” or “how to tie a tie” will always be evergreen. Sites like ehow.com and Wikipedia specialize in evergreen content that people often find themselves wanting to know.
Figure out what your audience will always be interested in, and create content that answers those questions and solves their problems. For example, if you are on the marketing team for a moving company, you could create the following evergreen content:
- A checklist for preparing to move a short distance
- A checklist for preparing to move a long distance
- A how-to guide for packing breakables
- Frequently asked questions for moving companies
- A glossary for common shipment/moving terms
- Original research about the value provided by moving companies
Updating evergreen content
Part of maintaining a strong evergreen content strategy is frequently updating your content. The frequency of your updates will depend on the content format, topic, and industry volatility. At a minimum, you should be checking for update possibilities and outdated content every six months to a year.
When you make updates, be sure to check for:
- Outdated statistics
- Product or service changes and new features
- Broken links
- Opportunities to add links to newly published content
- Improvements to engagement and recirculation
- Accessibility issues (alt text, link descriptions, etc.)
Evergreen content and Parse.ly
Parse.ly excels at helping you find and create evergreen content. Parse.ly’s evergreen content and candidate reporting identifies evergreen posts and potential evergreen candidates. Large publications like WIRED use Parse.ly to drive their evergreen content strategy. With Parse.ly, you can also track how your content is trending over time to evaluate if your evergreen efforts are working.