There’s a reason why the most elite content writing companies on the face of the Earth charge a small fortune for their services – killer content doesn’t come easy. Nevertheless, whether a business makes the choice to outsource SEO or tackle what needs tackling the DIY way, 2015 will be the year in which content matters more than it ever has since the advent of the Internet.
Why? Well, quite simply because strong search engine positioning has never been more crucial and keeping Google happy has also never been more difficult. These days, content has become the be all and end all for most online businesses looking to get noticed, as algorithm changes increasingly single out which sites are delivering the very best content for the people carrying out the web searchers.
Long story short therefore, faking it is now 100% out of the question and will get you nowhere. So, if you intend to get ahead in 2015 and are willing to put in the necessary time, effort and investment, here’s a look at the kinds of things that make for killer content that works:
Know Your Audience
First and foremost, don’t ever fall into the trap of assuming you know your target audience and have a good grasp on what makes them tick. You might, but then again you might not – this isn’t something to take risks with and make assumptions, so do your homework. Spend some time researching your market by looking at other successful businesses, checking out forums and message boards, keeping tabs on social media and so on. You can even contact them directly – why not ask a few direct questions to see what floats their boat? If you don’t know exactly what they want, how can you give it to them?
Don’t Fake It
If you aren’t an expert on any given subject and have no real passion for it, you can’t write about it in a convincing and absorbing way. As such, you’ll need to think carefully about whether to outsource SEO servicesto those with expertise in the subject, or perhaps think of a change of direction. You just cannot get away with faking it these days and once you’ve dealt your reputation a blow by trying, chances are you won’t win it back.
Get to the Point
Don’t fall into the trap of assuming that just because you could waffle on about your industry for weeks means you actually should. Your readers have turned up for a reason and so you need to fulfil what it is they need as quickly as possible. Tell them what you’ve got to say and get to the point concisely – too much filler can be killer in the worst possible way.
The basic principles are easy to understand and fairly few in numbers – uniqueness being the first and foremost. Of course you know you cannot plagiarise the hell out of someone else’s website and expect to get away with it, but spinning the content of another website and trying to pass it off as your own also no longer works. Why? Because spun content has no uniqueness whatsoever and Google can smell it a mile away. You can use the same information and subject matter of course, but you must ensure that you…at the risk of sounding very cliché…make it your own.
Something else that must be strived for in any and all circumstances is freshness of content – as in how new and relevant it is right now. Putting together a site that’s full of yesterday’s news is easy – anyone could do it and thousands do. By contrast, sites on the cutting edge of any industry or niche are harder to put together, far more sought-after and always looked upon by Google and Co. with more favour. So in order to stand out from the crowd in every possible sense, it is vital to make sure all content is fresh and current. Tell them something that’s already old news and chances are it will be the last thing they read on your site…end of story.
You could easily tick both of the above boxes and still have content that isn’t helpful. Ask yourself – why has the reader come to the site in the first place and does the content focus 100% on catering to their needs? If the answer is no, then the content isn’t killer.
Ease of Digestion
And finally, you could have some of the most incredible wisdom to share and generous offers to give out, but if they’re hidden among 140,000 lines of unbroken text, nobody will ever bother to find them. Instead, they’ll go elsewhere where they can see what they need in an instant and save a heck of a lot of their valuable time. Great content means concise and digestible content – always!