Content Is King

A quality website design, template or theme is very important – it makes sure that your information is clearly presented and attractive as well as ensuring that your website is readable on a range of devices. A good template will render your page quickly and may also include some advanced features like schema markup.  However, all that work will be wasted if no one ever finds your website.

You can find readers by advertising online or by having an engaging social media account to hook readers and redirect them to your website. Of course, these methods take time, effort and money. The holy grail of being found is to perform well in the organic search results. To achieve good organic rankings you need two things – good quality text on your webpage and links from other websites to yours. If you have lots of interesting content then the web links will follow!

What Makes Good Content?

Your content has to be interesting and easy to read for your human audience but it also has to be structured well so that the search engine bots can read and understand the content. There are some basic do’s and don’ts that you should be aware of before writing for your website.
For Search Engine Bots;

  • Make your title tag unique and an accurate reflection of the page content. Use key terms where it is natural to do so. Do not stuff it with key terms in an unnatural way. Don’t use more than 60 characters.
  • Use h1 h2 and h3 tags properly.
  • Where you have lists and tables make sure you implement the correct html (li, ul, tr, th, td tags) and take the time to add all the markup needed to make the information accessible.
  • If you want to be found for a particular search term then you need to include it within your page text. Take the opportunity to use similar phrases with different word orders as well as plural & singular versions. This will increase the number of similar phrases you can appear for. Don’t keyword stuff your page with lists of key terms. Human readers hate it and the Search Engine Bots are likely to ignore your page or even worse penalise you.

For human readers;

  • Large blocks of text are offputting. Break them up with paragraphs, images and headings.
  • If your webpage is long, break it up into sections and add bookmarks so your readers can easily jump to the sections they are interested in.
  • Write with personality and have an opinion. It is easy to differentiate an article which has been written by someone with a genuine interest in the topic and someone who has simply reword the relevant wikipedia page.  The former is likely to be shared and commented on and the latter is likely to be ignored.
  • The article should be written well – spelling and grammar matter!

Copywriting Services

Sometimes there isn’t anybody in a business who can write well. In these cases, it is a good investment to hire a professional for the job. Professional copywriters will have excellent grammar and spelling and most will have experience writing for websites. All you need to give them is a brief and possibly a few sources like brochures or competitor websites. There are a wealth of copywriting companies that collect together professional writers with different specialist areas. Some copywriters will provide a brochure of their writers so you can review the languages they can write in and what topics they are experienced in writing about. You can also find a lot of web portals like freelancer.com and peopleperhour.com which let you find contractors direct. Although this is often cheaper the quality of the work and the timescales it is delivered in can be variable!

Topic Areas

Before you delve into lots of articles or blog posts make sure you have the basics right first. It is surprising how few websites contain all the information they should – even very large companies can have some glaring oversites. It is sensible to assume that your readers have never heard of your business before and don’t know anything about what you do. Provide basic explanations of your product or service and be very clear about how to buy from you and what your customers or readers should expect.

Topic Areas: The Basics

If you are selling a product or service your website needs to be trustworthy; use https, provide your address and a contact phone number, provide reviews and have a page that discusses complaints and returns.

If you are selling a product you need to have a detailed page on delivery – where do you deliver, how long does it take and exactly how do you charge delivery fees.

All websites should have an About Us page. Who are you, how long have you been in business, what are qualifications or experience and how are you different. Photos of real people, your office or vehicles are big trust factors.

Where are you and when are open. Be very clear, provide addresses, contact information and opening hours for every location and also your customer services helpline if it is separate.

It is amazing how many websites home pages are just a few pretty pictures. You should always include a few paragraphs that say very clearly who you are, what you do and what you are selling or writing about. In the text include links to other areas of your website where relevant.

Don’t skimp on the text that appears on your product pages or categories. Many e-commerce sites only have a nice big image of a product and then list a few features like the power rating, size or colour. That is not a lot of information for the search engine bots to work with. Make sure your product pages say exactly what you are selling in such a way to include the important key terms.

Topic Areas: Expanding your Content

Once you have got the basics right you can start to think of articles that will add to your website content. The idea is to select topics that are relevant to your business. In that way you will be building up information your target audience will want to read and also adding lots of relevant phrases to your website which the search engines can rank you for.

It can be hard to think of areas to write about. The questions your customers ask you via email or phone are a good place to start. If you get lots of questions about how to install or use your product write about that. Write some features on projects that you or your products have been involved in. If there is important industry news write about it. Please remember never to copy other peoples content. It is illegal and the search engines will at best ignore your copy and at worst penalise your site.

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