‘Content is King’: this is the catch-all phrase used to stress the importance of quality web content in relation to SEO.
Unfortunately, ‘content’ is such a general term that it can be difficult to translate this catchy maxim into a practical series of actions that will have a real impact on your website. Instead of rushing headlong into creating endless blog posts or a series of videos that might give you the edge over your competitors; consider assessing how your current website currently performs and if there’s a way that you can optimise the content that you already have.
What is ‘content’?
‘Content’ is not just a word to use for a video or a flashy infographic – it is a coverall term for everything on your website. That includes the style of your website, the images on your page, the fonts, the words themselves and even the elements of your site that are invisible to users.
Optimising the content on your website for search engines is important. But the ‘Content is King’ saying should serve as a reminder that your website is primarily made for people to use, serving their needs should be your top priority and will naturally translate into good SEO for your site.
Words are for people and search engines
It only takes one typo in your copy to completely destroy any kind of authority that you might have accrued with the user. With that being said, good written content involves more than just spelling and grammar. The writing on your website should speak to your desired audience and provide satisfying answers to questions that they might have.
For example, you might think that the best copy you can write will aim to demonstrate your considerable expertise or superiority over competitors. In the realms of traditional advertising (television, radio, print) impressing the advantages of using your product or service over competitors makes sense; you only have a short amount of time so your brand image and purpose should come first.
But the same rules don’t apply to internet marketing.
Your website can serve a multitude of purposes by featuring a variety of pages. One page could aim to inform the user about your organisation, whilst another could be created with the purpose of driving sales or enquiries; another page could abandon both of these goals and simply offer unbiased advice to the searcher.
There’s no need to rush the reader or attempt to shamelessly plug your business, instead, you can take your time and offer them valuable information related to their search query.
There are many reasons why people use search engines: they could be looking for someone to provide them a service or they could be researching what service is best for them, they might be looking for self-help solutions or just a second opinion. Whilst your website’s prime purpose should still be advertising your service or products, you can (and should) offer these inquisitive searchers something as well.
Let’s take the example of a website for an oven cleaning service.
The content you’d expect on a website for this kind of business would be practical information like service hours, costs and locations covered. Whilst this is useful for prospective clients, it might not answer all the questions that they have about oven cleaning. By tailoring content to answer likely search queries relative to your brand you can satisfy the users’ demands, improve users’ trust of your brand and also affect how you are perceived by the search engines.
Although search engines consider technical data such as word count and site structure when they’re indexing sites for the search engine results pages (SERPs) – they will also look for more illustrative signals that your site is worth its salt.
Signals such as ‘dwell time’ (the amount of time that a user spends on your site), as well as ‘bounce-rate’ (the percentage of visitors who navigate away from your site after viewing only one page) tell search engines how useful your site has been for the search query that the user has typed in. These statistics are used to determine how strong the content on your site is overall and will affect how all the pages on your site are ranked by search engines.
If your site features useful written content that is arranged in a logical, attractive fashion then visitors are likely to spend more time on your site and search engines will consider your site to be of a higher quality. The more consistent, sustained traffic you receive the more you should be rewarded in visibility in the SERPs.
Optimising and creating excellent written content is just one way that you can improve the search rankings for your chosen keywords. If you’d like further direction on how you can increase your online visibility then you can send us a message through the Contact page.