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Content is important in the online world, and great content is even more so. It’s been said that you can do amazing things with amazing content, but why is this so important? There are two major reasons people try to create high-quality content and why they spend so much time doing so:
It can help you drive a lot of visitors and potential customers to your site.
Investing the necessary time and work that’s needed to create good content can help you on your path toward making a big, recognizable, and prosperous brand that everyone notices. The alternative is to write low-quality content and go down a path that will lead you nowhere.
Content is so important that a lot of content marketers creating content for a living. You might be looking to achieve this, or you’re a business leader in need of good content. Either way, you will have to learn how to put out quality content at all times.
The road sounds simple since you “only” have to create good content regularly for your site or blog to increase traffic, generate leads, or boost your SEO ranking. The first thing you need to understand is that Google also favors websites with quality content.
If Google thinks this way, then you should try to get in line if you want to achieve something. In fact, Google announced that they would penalize websites or blogs that duplicate content, and they work hard to discover such places.
Before we move on, you first need to understand why Google is putting so much importance on content quality and why this is overall a very important factor. First of all, they are in the search business and the products that they deliver are adequate search results.
Google wants to answer people’s questions as accurately as possible. Additionally, they want to make the whole thing intuitive and adjust to how people today are using technology. In the past, keywords helped with this but today they are a bit of a nuisance.
This is because a lot of marketers use keywords in a wrong way so that Google doesn’t even know what a certain page is about, while on the other hand, a lot of people that search for answers online use the wrong keywords to ask questions because of their lack of knowledge – this creates problems.
This is why Google updated their algorithms. Every new iteration allows the search engine to be closer to guessing what a certain user is looking for by looking at the context of previous searches, the locations of the user, and many other different criteria.
Google simply want to give users an interactive experience in their searches. In the past, if you wanted to find a definition of something, you would have to find a site that has that kind of information, but today you can simply add “definition” to your search and you will instantly get various definitions on a certain topic from different sources.
Google is always looking to improve user experience and one day they will probably switch searches to be voice operated. This is not science fiction and it is probably going to happen in the near future. This is why marketers and businesses alike need to keep up with Google in order to get on the right track.
Google offers an SEO Starter Guide that can be used as a good reference to get your content quality in shape. There are many good pieces of advice here that you can learn in order to avoid making big mistakes.
Basically, Google tells you what you shouldn’t do, such as adding broken links to your content, promoting inaccurate information, have spelling and grammar mistakes, overwhelming users with ads, and many other tips.
Still, these things focus mostly on the SEO aspect for your content and Google doesn’t offer any concrete advice on how to improve the quality of you content. They simply say that quality is important and the better it is, the better your results will be overall.
However, the general tone tells us a couple of things when you look at the text closely and you can learn valuable lessons about what is important when creating content. Here are the important factors of content that improve its quality.
What does this mean? It means that people should get caught up in your content and spend a lot more time with it. This can be done through designs, including product images, the organization’s staff, and so on. Allow visitors to get caught up by making sure you have no factual, stylistic or spelling errors within your content.
You can include ads within your content, but you should perform user testing to figure out how much they are affecting the experience of your visitors. Never allow your ads to ruin your content and distract visitors too much. Add social media widgets, comment boxes and CTA buttons within your content.
Actionable goes well with engaging, as it gives consumers a sense of how they can apply the information that they just learned from a certain piece of content. Don’t disrespect people and order them what to do, instead address them with respect and show them how to use the information within your content properly.
For example, if you are writing blog posts make sure that you always give tips on applying the information that you offer. People that read these kinds of posts want to learn something new and become better at something, so make it easier for them and be clear with the information you provide.
Believe it or not, Google is looking to combine SEO and UX as much as possible. Simply put, they want to make it impossible to create content that offers one thing and doesn’t offer the other. This is because they want to give the advantage to content that offers a great experience to people searching.
This is why you need to make sure that you have unique content with highly specific information. Don’t look to mass-produce content and get it in bulk from some company you outsourced the work to. Quality beats quantity in this case and you need to create content while bearing UX in mind at all times.
Producing quality content includes making the right design and structure moves. Still, without providing your target audience with a great experience you won’t be able to achieve anything. Content is not a product that can be perfect by default – simply put, it needs to be designed for the right audience in order to be understood and provide the necessary user experience.
As we mentioned earlier, the main purpose of a search engine is to deliver answers to questions that people are asking with their searches. We also mentioned that Google is very effective at doing this and that typing in a query will provide people with valuable videos, blog posts, pictures, links, and so on.
The same rule basically applies when people open up a blog post, watch a video or an infographic. They have a question in their mind that’s bothering them and needs to be answered. This doesn’t mean that they want to always read huge blocks of text or watch long videos to get an answer.
In fact, in most cases they want the answers very quickly. This is why you should make your content visible and structured appropriately, so that people can quickly find the important bits and the juicy information that they seek. Additionally, they should offer full in-depth knowledge for those that have the time and curiosity to go through it more carefully.
This means that your heading should be properly constructed, as well as your whole post. You can include obvious statements that can be quite searchable online. This is how your content will be answer-oriented and provide people with the information they came for.
The content you create and provide to people online needs to show credibility. This applies to your site, your brand, and you as an individual as well. Rely on original research, testimonials, links, reviews, citations and real people to add credibility to your content.
You can include testimonials from your previous customers or an author biography to boost your reputation and credibility. Make sure that you include valuable links within your content, add references and sources at the end, and tell people how you got your information and from which reliable sources.
Just think about what would happen if you wrote a blog post for your company where hundreds or even thousands of important people could read it, and it turned out that you gave them inaccurate information. Your personal and your company’s reputation would be damaged forever.
Repairing your reputation is one of the most challenging tasks and you should never let yourself and your business get into this kind of a situation. Bear in mind that your blog section reflects on your business and that if there are problems with your posts it can impact how customers look at your business, your products and services.
Make sure that you verify all of the statistics you use and leave links that will lead people to the source and allow them to see it for themselves. When you provide this kind of accuracy within all of your content, you will quickly be able to build more trust with all of your readers.
Here are the three reasons why you should do this:
You can build trust: it’s always better to link to authoritative and trusted sources, as people will click on them and understand that you are keeping yourself updated with relevant and important sources that can be relied on.
It provides more depth to your content: quality content will provide additional resources and information that is relevant to the topic and that might interest readers. This is why you should put in links and sources that people might be interested in reading. By doing this you will show that you’ve carefully researched your topic and that you are interested in it as much as the readers are. Additionally, this is a good opportunity to link your other posts that could be relevant and offer value to readers.
Make it easier for search engines: when you link to many big and relevant sources with similar topics and related subjects, search engines will find it easier to recognize your content, learn what it’s about and what answers it holds. This is how it will be ranked well for searches and be found by people that are really looking for the information that your posts contain.
This one is quite difficult, but in order to achieve good things with your content, it needs to offer something new on a certain subject and more than what people can currently find online. Luckily, a lot of people simply copy other people’s content.
This gives you an opportunity to offer your thoughts and fresh perspective on a certain topic. No matter if you are writing about how it is to be a dog owner or how to build a successful travel business, you need to make sure to add more value or offer a different perspective than countless other similar articles that can be found online.
The way to do this is to simply be more creative with your topic ideas or find different angles to look at them. Dig deep and do plenty of research to find something interesting and create a logical connection with the point you are trying to make. Additionally, make sure that you find reliable sources, statistics and metrics that can support your claims.
This is also related to engaging your audience, but this method in particular is especially effective and this is why we will address it as a separate issue. To engage your audience, you first need to create quality content that has the power to engage them, and one of the best ways to achieve this is by writing properly.
Now, this doesn’t mean that you should leave your posts incomplete. Instead, simply end your posts with hard-hitting questions about the topic you shared with them. These questions can revolve around how the knowledge they learned can be implemented, encourage them to offer alternative information, share their opinion and so on.
Readers start to form opinions on a post and judge it as soon as they start reading it, i.e. in the introduction. A lot of them probably decide whether or not they will read the whole thing or not based on the first couple of sentences.
This is why it is your job to convince people that they should continue reading your posts in the first couple of sentences. Explain to the readers what your blog post will be talking about and why they should stick around to read the whole thing.
Although I’m not suggesting that you should make up stories like epic or sci-fi novels, you can add an anecdote or two within your content to spice it up and engage people further. You can use an anecdote within the introduction to get people interested in your post.
Additionally, you can use a story to clarify a certain point. Use real events that happened to you as examples of the point you are trying to make. This is how you will engage people and make your content more memorable.
Different people learn in different ways. There are people who learn better by reading, others prefer watching videos, some like to learn by listening, and so on. The main thing is that nobody will learn less if they have visual content at their disposal as well.
Visual aids such as pictures, diagrams, infographics, videos, or illustrations can help you make a point much more efficiently and allow readers to understand your content to the fullest. No matter what your subject is and what kind of structure your post has, make sure to include pictures.
For example, if you are writing a guide that teaches people how to use a certain product, pictures can help you a lot. Instead of having to write several paragraphs where you explain what kind of action needs to be taken to achieve something, you can simply add a picture that shows what needs to be done. This is how users will easily understand what you are trying to tell them and you won’t have to write several paragraphs to explain everything.
These are the essentials you need to consider if you want to create quality content on a regular basis. It will take time and a lot of hard work until you reach a level where you can achieve consistency and always put out quality content, so be prepared to wait. Work on your content creation skills and the results will come.
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