Content Marketing Trends & Updates: Q1 2021

April 13, 2021
Ana Gotter

Content marketing is founded on a single stable principle: You offer value in the form of content with the goal of building a relationship with the reader.

While this will always be true, the best practices of content marketing shift overtime. There are new tools on the market, new algorithms that we need to adapt to, and new knowledge and strategies to implement.

Changes can happen quickly, and the last thing that you want to happen is to fall behind. Make sure that you’re up to date with all the latest and greatest from the content marketing world in 2021’s first quarter.

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Contently’s report shares insight into buyer behavior

Up-to-date and in-depth information about how buyer behavior shapes content marketing is always valuable, and Contently recently published an incredible report that all content marketers should see.

Here are some of the biggest highlights:

  • 80% of people have consumed a piece of content from a brand in the past year
  • 63% of the public trusts brands more than media companies or traditional news outlets
  • 58% of consumers said they were likely to take a free course if it was offered by a brand

It might just be time to start creating some free courses. In the meantime, check out the full report here.

New WordPress Esperanza makes editing easier

Esperanza— which is WordPress 5.7— has officially rolled out, and it comes with an abundance of new features that makes editing and customizing your site easier than before.

WordPress 5.7 Esperanza editor

For content marketers who work in WordPress, it’s not hard to appreciate the new layout. Some of the best new features include reusable blocks within posts, the ability to drag-and-drop block patterns right into a post, and easier-to-use font-size adjustments.

 You’ll now have more control over designing your blog posts, too. You can change the size of social icon blocks, choose vertical or horizontal layouts for buttons, and utilize full-height alignment to fill-the-screen with images of choice.

You can learn more about the new features here.

Google “Page Experience” ranking factor coming May, 2021

We know that Google loves to change things up as soon as we get comfortable, and 2021 is no exception.

They’ve recently announced that they’ll be shaking things up again with a new “Page Experience” ranking factor, which will impact the search engine results pages.

The new algorithm will examine signals including (but likely not limited to) the following:

  • Mobile-friendliness
  • Security features like HTTPS and safe browsing
  • Interstitial guidelines
  • Visual stability (so no pages jumping around automatically)
  • Site loading speed
  • Interactivity

The good news is that some of these signals are already important to Google, so brands who are aggressively trying to rank well are likely already optimizing for them.

Having a mobile-friendly, fast-loading, secure site that’s meant to engage users instead of just sell immediately is a good bet. Bloggers who are creating high-quality content that’s written to align with search intent will hopefully see positive impacts.

The algorithm is expected to roll out in May of this year. Keep an eye on your positioning in the SERPs and see how it impacts you.

Content marketing conference happening soon

This year, the 7th annual Content Marketing Conference is taking place April 27th to 29th, so get ready. Due to the necessity for social distancing, the entire event will be prerecorded and published online from the 27th to 29th.

While the conference will look a little different this year than most others, the quality you’ll get is still top-notch, especially with speakers like Hubspot’s Matthew Barby and well-regarded freelancer Karine Bengualid.

You can see more about the event here if interested.

New Shopify app discovery: Nuttifier blog comment emails

The Nuttifier Blog Comment Emails Shopify app is relatively new, and it’s one I’ve just discovered so it’s brand-new to me.

I’ve got several clients who run their stores and blogs through Shopify, and keeping up with comments on the blog can be a challenge.

Dashboard of Nuttifier blog comment emails

For brands who want to actively check all comments that are made on your blog, this is a great plugin to use. The concept is simple: You get a blog comment, and you get an email to review it. Simple, but effective, and it can help you stay on top of engagement management if that’s a concern.

Final thoughts

Content marketing can be wildly effective, but it’s also deeply competitive. If you want to rank well in the SERPs and draw high-quality organic traffic to your site, staying up to date with all the recent developments in the industry is crucial.

The biggest change to watch moving forward will be Google’s algorithm update that’s coming in May, so take a look at the list of assessed signals and make sure that your site is in order to rank well.

Want to learn more about how to excel with content marketing? Check out our full blog here.  

Ana Gotter
Ana is a strategic content marketer specializing in business, finance, and marketing writing, though she's worked across a range of industries. She works in Orlando with her three dogs and can be contacted at www.anagotter.com.

About the Author

Ana Gotter
Ana is a strategic content marketer specializing in business, finance, and marketing writing, though she's worked across a range of industries. She works in Orlando with her three dogs and can be contacted at www.anagotter.com.