You hear the word “quality” used all the time, for all sorts of reasons. Its definition is quite subjective and can mean very different things depending on the context. But, in the case of blogging or web content development, the word “quality” can be defined in only two ways that really matter. For search engines, high-quality content is a result that quickly gives the person using the search engine the content they want. For businesses, high-quality online content attracts, engages and sells.
Both definitions of “quality” converge in the world of digital marketing, because research shows content favored by Google is the same content that drives sales.
So, how does one make content that checks these boxes? How do you please both the algorithm and the potential customers on your website? The detailed answer would take up too much space for this particular blog (and also require some knowledge about the business in question), but below, we’ve compiled five best practices when it comes to creating high-value content that converts.
Address the searchers’ intent
High-quality content is written to quickly fulfill a potential customer’s need. If what you create, including the call to action, doesn’t align with your visitors’ search intent, the whole effort will be in vain.
Take this example: Someone using the internet to find information about a newly pinched nerve is seeking a different search result than someone trying to set up a chiropractor appointment to address the pinched nerve. They are in far different places in their journey of finding information. If you try to deliver content about making a purchase to the first person, you are unlikely to succeed because that user does not yet feel informed enough to make that kind of decision.
Conducting research to better understand visitors’ search intent when they use certain keywords will enable you to create content that’s more relevant and valuable to them.
Focus on clarity
Most writers enjoy flexing their creative muscles and employing some wordplay every so often, but online marketing content must always put clarity over cleverness. To be an effective educator and communicator, your content must flow and be easy to understand.
Put the industry jargon and thesis-level vocabulary aside to ensure you can communicate in simple terms anyone can comprehend. It’s very easy for someone who’s confused to feel frustrated, and a frustrated potential customer is a simple click away from leaving your website to check out a competitor’s. Not only that, but a high “bounce rate” is detrimental to your ranking on Google.
Make it easy to read
There are several factors (sentence length, fonts, grammar, etc.) that contribute to readability of online content, and improving them can make your website better for potential customers as well as the search engines that crawl your code to index it.
Tips to keep your content readable:
- Stay succinct and keep paragraphs short
- Turn longer portions of text into smaller, more digestible sections with subheadings
- Make information easier to skim by using bulleted lists (like what we just did right here!)
Break up text with multimedia content
It’s usually easier for the human brain to process and recall visuals over text-based content, and there are a lot of options that can complement your writing. Photos, screenshots, video, infographics, graphs, and even memes can play a pivotal role in grabbing a person’s attention and making a strong memory.
Multimedia content also creates a natural break in your text and offers supporting visuals to the point you’re trying to make.
Plus, Google places a priority on multimedia, believing it’s valuable to its users, so including more in your content can help improve your website’s search results ranking.
Be strategic with word count
Two opposing factors are creating a dichotomy for content creators trying to find the sweet spot for word count. Google wants to deliver long-form, in-depth content in its results, but mobile users clearly prefer content that’s simple, short, and scannable.
So, since you can’t please both, what does it mean for you? If your first priority is ranking high in a Google search, then up the word count of your content (a minimum of 300 words, up to about 2,000 words). If research tells you your target audience is more likely to be browsing on their phones, cut as much as you can; include content summaries and/or highlights; and use more images, video and lists.
While the preceding tips will no doubt be useful to you, remember there’s no “one-size-fits-all” approach to creating high-quality content. The “golden rule” we like to keep in mind is to put ourselves in our audience’s shoes. Would they enjoy reading what we’re about to publish? Does it address their questions and needs? If you try this exercise, and aren’t able to answer these questions confidently, your content’s probably better off as a draft.
Also, be prepared to experience a period of trial and error. It’s bound to happen as you feel out your audience and learn what garners the best response. Using our tips as a guide, you can feel confident your content is pointed in the right direction. Put in a little work and you’ll eventually find the messaging and tactics that work.
Does all that sound a little overwhelming? Are the day-to-day operations of the business already taking up too much of your time? If content creation is on your to-do list, but you’re struggling to fit it in or aren’t sure where to even begin, contact Baer Performance Marketing. We’re a full-service marketing agency offering a mix of traditional and digital marketing tactics, including content writing that converts. Set up a free marketing assessment today: 920-632-7648