A membership website’s SEO strategy

Marketers, publishers, and content creators have long utilized search engine optimization as a content strategy.

The strategy is known for driving long-term results – by making your publicly available content more search engine-friendly, you’ll be able to generate more traffic to your site and convert more of your visitors into leads and customers.

Many businesses are wondering: How can I rank my content on search engines if it is protected? With membership websites, protected content, and content subscriptions on the rise, many independent businesses are wondering: How do I rank protected content on search engines?

you need a segmented content strategy.

In this article, we’re going to get the technical stuff out of the way by explaining how the search engines see member-only content, then dig into the strategy required to harness SEO as a growth lever for your business.

What is the search engine’s interpretation of protected content?

Typically, platforms offer two levels of content protection: full and partial. Below are the differences between the two.

Content is fully protected 🔐

Content protected by a platform (like Ghost) is protected on the server side. In short, the content you publish as a member is never publicly available – not even by search engines. Search engine crawlers cannot see any protected content on the page, it is only visible to logged-in visitors, and only if they have the appropriate access level.

The benefits of full content protection are numerous. It means there is no way for visitors (or bots) to disable JavaScript or CSS and access your premium content. It also means you don’t run the risk of the search engines thinking you are cloaking, a practice that is a violation of Google’s webmaster guidelines.

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