SEO – What Does Google Really Want?September 14, 2015
Mobile Friendly Websites – are you prepared?October 13, 2015
As we have been keen to point out whenever the subject of SEO comes up, making your website highly ranked in Google searches has become overwhelmingly a matter of having quality content on your website.
But what does quality content actually mean?
Today, getting content marketing right is not that hard, if you know what you are doing. There are plenty of resources and guides for good content marketing practices. Google itself offers sound advice on how to make your site Google-friendly.
The challenge that every content marketer or business owner who wishes to improve their search engine page ranking faces is how to stand out in a world where everybody is doing content marketing.
There you are… another tiny voice among the multitudes vying for the attention of an increasingly content-hungry audience. Trying everything you can to increase visitors and convert them into customers.
Simply giving visitors the information they are looking for is no longer enough and having links to other trustworthy and well-ranked websites takes second place to having standout content.
Here are some surefire tips that will help you improve the quality of your content and ultimately increase the number of visitors to your website or blog.
Know Your Stuff, Let Your Passion Shine
Passion resonates and people recognize when someone shares their passion. Likewise, your content should show that you are passionate about what you do and that you are also a subject matter expert in your field.
To be recognized as such, you must do two things.
First, your content should be well researched and focused on the hottest topics in the field.
Second, you should post regularly and stick to your schedule come rain or shine.
Remember, producing good content does not start with writing, but by being in touch with trends and industry shifts and then with good research. Your content goal should always be to add value through your unique perspective, rendering actionable insight and how-to advice.
If you approach your content creation in this way, your visitors will keep returning and they’ll recommend your blog or website to others who share the same passion.
According to the Pareto principle, 80% of your sales will come from 20% of your customers. If we apply this principle to website content, we can conclude that 20% of your visitors will likely consume 80% of your content.
Use analytics to learn as much as you can about your visitors and then craft content that is especially suited to their preferences and interests.
Google Analytics is an indispensable tool for tracking audience data and it is available to every website owner. It has nine separate audience reporting sections and most of them have easy-to-read sessions graphs and charts that show the behavior of each group, so you can mine it according to your needs.
Once you build up enough content, you can start identifying what content is most popular with what kind of audience. Don’t forget to write content for the referrers that brought them to you, too. This will point the way to other sites and types of content your audience loves.
These tips will help your content speak to them in a voice they understand and appreciate on topics they deem important and interesting.
Craft Compelling Headlines
Five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. Effective headline writing is one of the most prized skills in copywriting. A good headline must employ basic SEO practices while being compelling enough to make the visitor read on. For more information on SEO headline implementation, see “Technical Factors” in this article.
Additionally, good headlines translate into scrumptious social network post headlines when you share your content on Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin and other social media channels. Social media channels are indispensable for anyone wishing to expand their audience and a good social media strategy will strongly influence your search engine page rankings.
Your headline is the first impression you will make with your visitors, so make your headlines enticing and sticky. Leverage my first piece of advice (learn what speaks to your audience) and your audience’s words. You’ll be surprised how this increases the read rate, reduces the bounce rate and increasing loyalty and new customers.
Delve into search results that lead visitors to your website and use those keywords as often as possible. Create attention-grabbing headlines by using interesting phrasing and focusing primarily on drawing people in.
You don’t have to go full Upworthy or churn out listicles. As long as your headline is to the point, easy to read and understand, and it aligns with your visitors’ needs and it isn’t salesy, it will work.
Topical or Timeless Content?
The short answer? Mix them up and make sure you do both. When preparing to write, it is always tempting to write about the latest developments.
Even when developments are not happening regularly, you can write about your perspective, trade secrets you have mastered, or share your unique approach to getting results around a common and frustrating challenge your audience routinely faces.
Even beginners’ tips make great content. When you offer powerful, implementable advice, loyalty grows and sales follow loyalty.
Don’t Wear Your Feelings on Your Sleeve
Boldly sharing your opinions, advice and perspective will always attract dissenters and dissenters come in all shapes and sizes. They may respectfully offer their contrary opinion and they can be flat out unkind, asserting you are a complete buffoon. So keep in mind that whenever you present content that is relevant to your audience you are also inviting them to chime in.
Just remember, when your content invites dialogue, you are getting attention. As the saying goes, any attention is good attention. Activity means increased page views and quite possibly, more links and referrals.
To summarize, the short answer to the question posed in the title is that if you produce content that is relevant to your specific field and therefore for your audience – chances are it will also be SEO friendly.
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