June 4, 2015
Virtually anybody who has spent a decent amount of time learning about SEO and the related tactics knows that the game is constantly morphing. One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is that quality content is a must. In fact, unique and relevant material is more important now than ever before considering that content can no longer simply be stuffed with keywords and phrases and expected to excel.
These days, time needs to be spent to craft a genuinely click-worthy piece of content that is not only useful but compelling as well. The internet is bursting at the seams with quality content and information. If the copy that you develop is lack-luster or sub-par, it will simply float out into the ethers of the internet, rarely to be seen by human eyes. In other words, you’ll waste a lot of time and precious resources unless you learn to wow your readers.
In an effort to help write some of the most compelling and clickable content on the internet, here are 4 of today’s best practices and most important guidelines for generating stellar content:
The Audience Comes First
This may seem like a no-brainer, but there is still an absurd amount of keyword-riddled content posted online that caters more to the bots that crawl the articles than to the people that actually read the pieces. Not only will this style of writing deter many potential prospects from reading your material or shopping with your brand, but this will actually damage your SEO efforts. Google has the ability to identify these types of posts and will purposefully downgrade a site’s ranking for posting such material.
Now, this is not to say that keywords are no longer critical, as they most definitely still are. The trick here is to weave these words into the piece in a natural and flowing way.
Instead of catering to Google-bots, ensure that the content generated is unique, relevant, and most of all, useful to the audience it is aimed at. In this digital era, there is a bounty of various tools and applications available online that can assist writers in creating outright great content. Tools like the ‘Hemingway Editor’ (http://www.hemingwayapp.com/desktop.html) are great for keeping content focused and precise for the audience at hand.
Craft Headlines for Click-ability
Headlines are one of the most important elements to focus on when creating a great piece of content. Before the viewer will even consider reading an article, the headline has to grab them voraciously and incite genuine curiosity. If your posts have ho-hum titles, the traffic will reflect the lackluster language. Likewise, never mislead your readers with a subject that doesn’t deliver. You won’t maintain repeat traffic with methods that don’t have integrity at their core.
Since the headline of the article will be the first impression of what is to come, it is crucial that these attention-grabbers be optimized to include keywords, incite interest, and make clear how this could improve the reader’s life. How to articles, infographics, and list articles are click mongers, as a rule. Check out some of the most popular blogs in your niche to gain a better understanding of what kinds of content is posted and how exactly the headlines are crafted. Someone has cracked the code to reach your target audience; see what’s worked for them and get inspired.
Build Up Proper Links
Amassing proper backlinks for your site and content can be somewhat time consuming, although it is absolutely necessary to increase your SEO ranking and to help establish a reputable and respected online name. By linking to various blogs, social media platforms, and fellow writer’s pages, you’re increasing awareness of your own content and efforts as well as establishing more credibility and authority. This in turn will directly affect how your company ranks in the SERPs. Remember that the development of compelling content becomes even more important with link building as no one will want to send their visitors to mediocre material.
One word to the wise: Only link to sites that are both relevant to your industry and high quality. Links for the sake of links is one grand way to see your rankings drop. It’s a black hat tactic and it will get you in hot water eventually. Make every link count, and your results will reflect these efforts.
Images, Videos, and Gifs
Content with eye-catching images have come to rule the social stratosphere. Images, gifs, videos, or any other form of visual devices are now an imperative factor to posting content. With the intense amount of digital clutter running amuck, content without an image, video, or something else to draw the eyes of potential readers often remains invisible. Select high-resolution, interesting, and relevant images to the content that will be posted to ensure you’re catching your audience’s attention and getting them to click on your content in droves.
The creation of quality content is likely something that will never change as a “golden rule” of SEO performance. As time goes on, the rules of creating this content only become more refined and structured. Without a doubt, this trend will only deepen, making it imperative for business owners to follow suit and write genuinely interesting content for audiences. With the basic guidelines laid out above, you are well on your way to generating some of the most useful, compelling, and clickable content around.
What are some great content creation tips and tricks that weren’t shared here? What online creation tools do you use to generate click-worthy content?
Digital producer, online marketer, community manager, and multi-faceted writer Tina Courtney-Brown has been managing cross-functional teams for online businesses since 1996. Tina has assisted many clients in maximizing online production and marketing efforts, and is a staff writer for SiteProNews, one of the Web’s foremost webmaster and tech news blogs. She’s produced and marketed innovative content for major players like Disney and JDate, as well as boutique startups galore, with fortes including social media, SEO, massively multiplayer games, community management, social networks, and project management. Tina is also a certified Reiki practitioner, herbalist, nonprofit director and spiritual counselor. Learn more at her personal website, or find her on Facebook and Google+.