The first day of the year is always a bit of an enigma. There is that sense of melancholy over an entire year that has past. Then again, there is a whole new year to look forward to. With the latter comes a slew of people making new year resolutions which will not likely keep.
So what will my resolution(s) be and how will I keep mine? For work, I have resolved to increase the speed and quality of my content. This means that more time needs to go into each content piece. More focus needs to go into specific areas of interest.
These resolutions have not been easy to come about. I have spent a big chunk of time over the past year trying to focus my efforts. Much of the confusion has been due to over eagerness to explore the many facets that go into online content.
More Traffic Will Come With the Right Content
Of course, the main purpose of improving my own online content is to leverage on Google. It isn’t easy to draw interest from the king of search engines. Here is some of what I aim for which may help you as well.
More research needs to go into content. For example, although this site is personal, I intend to limit it to content creation. Google pays attention to sites which focus on key content areas.
Better content is also going to be a big factor. I have often heard that longer is better, but that’s not the entirety of the truth. The fact is that Google likes in-depth content. So the more you can expand on a specific topic the better the article will rank. Personally though, I’ve found that you need a bare minimum of 1,000 words for any hope of not getting lost in the clutter at all.
Content marketing is one area in which I have been too complacent. It is easy to bash out and article and post it but that would be like only doing half the job.
Of course there are many more factors which affect how much traffic you can gain through content. Baby steps, as they say.
How to Build Good Content
In its simplest form, great content needs to achieve two key objectives. It has to appeal to the readers – and that would be your style of writing. It has to solve a problem – that demonstrates your expertise.
This may sound simple but in reality is way more difficult.
The style of your writing needs to be in-line with the type of site that you run. For a blog-type site, you need to show your conviction. Write with passion and you will inspire your readers.
Aside from passion, your content should also be readable. This doesn’t mean legible, but easy to read. One useful tool I have found to help with this is the free Hemingway app. You can write and then clean up the article with suggestions from the app.
No matter what type of site your run, always back up your content with facts. Where possible, link to articles on reputable sites to expand on your points. Save your readers from having to fact check – do it for them!
No matter what type of site you run or what your style will be, always remember; Google frowns on duplication.
The way to avoid this is simple; write it yourself. Say for example you run a news site. Often, companies will send out great press releases. Resist the urge to lift entire paragraphs.
Read through the press release and lift the key points that it is trying to convey. From there, write up the news piece yourself. This way you can avoid getting hit with a content duplication penalty.
To summarize, great content will include;
- Comprehensive, original text
- Useful, instructional content
- Accurate facts and references
- Passion-stirring topics
- Some media like images to break the monotony
Building Quality Links
Another benefit of better and more in-depth content is that it will catch attention. Longer articles tend to be more comprehensive and thus, useful.
A 300-word article often leaves its readers with more questions than answers. The occasional goldfish who forgets the intro before reaching the end of the article is rare. Most people who are searching for something will remember.
But creating great content isn’t enough for great SEO results. You will need to combine that with some great backlinks. Your ultimate aim is to get backlinks to your content from a sites with high domain authority.
5 Tips to building backlinks;
1. Guest Post – After you have written a few pieces, offer to guest post on a few other sites. Choose sites that are reputable and see if they are open to contributed content. In exchange ask if they will do a backlink.
2. Create Infographics – These are often very factual and interesting. They are also pretty enough to grab attention so people will want to link to them (like the one here).
3. Comment on Related Sites – This does not mean to SPAM them with one liners. Leave relevant comments that will show your own expertise on the subject matter.
4. Consider a Press Release – This was once the exclusive domain of public listed or large companies. Today you can write your own press release and get it listed for free.
5. Market Yourself – Be active on professional social media sites. Share your thoughts with care and build your reputation, This will pay off in the long run.
The Path to Fame is Difficult
If you’re on your first article this may sound like a heck of a hill to climb. Yet Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your reputation be.
As businesses cannot survive alone, neither will you online. Build a rapport with similar minded site owners and climb the hill to fame together. It will take time but your traffic will build by and by.
If you are wondering how long it will take, I have heard from some experts that it may need as many as 100 good articles. If you write at a pace of one article a day, that will be roughly three months.
The question that remains is; How dedicated are you to making this happen?