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Creating Content That Keeps your Readers Digging for More

Monday February 08, 2016

Content is the bloodline of any website. Whether it’s informative, entertaining, newsworthy, or all of the above, users come to a website for the content – and stay for more content. Content creation is a critical tool for building brand loyalty and increasing revenue.

Content is not only crucial for building an audience; it also helps boost search engine rankings and increase traffic. Search engines aim to highlight the most current and accurate information available. Having a continual stream of fresh content signals to search engines that a website is active, relevant, and up-to-speed. If content isn’t added on a continuous basis, it is seen as collecting dust in the eyes of Google. And after all: it’s Google’s world, we just live it.

Formulating captivating content takes both practice and research. Here are some guidelines for producing the compelling copy for your website:

Be original. Google penalizes sites that publish duplicate content. Its mission is to showcase high quality, original content; therefore, it punishes websites that rehash content simply for the sake of having more quantity over quality.

Beyond that, having unoriginal content doesn’t encourage other websites to link back to your own. That means you lose out on valuable link juice by publishing content that’s overdone. Incentivize other sites to link back to yours by tackling innovative ideas and concepts. It takes time and some serious digging, but the rewards will pay off for setting yourself apart with originality.

Grab readers’ attention from the get-go. It goes without saying that first impressions count. The same is true for content. With the ease of access to the Internet, users bounce from page to page frequently and mercilessly. That means you have a very small window of time to grab readers’ interest. It is estimated that 80% of users read a headline, but only 20% of those people go on to read the article. Take time to carefully craft a headline and introductory paragraph that packs a punch.

Find out what your users respond to best. Pull up Google Analytics and pinpoint the articles that have the biggest traction – including views, comments, and shares. It’s clear you already have content that’s being discovered more often than others. If users are especially fond of a certain topic, continue to explore it in depth to reproduce your success. Readers want to hear more – don’t keep them hanging.

Make your content action-worthy. Integrate the content with your brand. Offer solutions to the concept or demonstrate your company’s involvement in it. You have the knowledge on the topic – now show how you implement in your company. Give readers a link to click, a survey to take, or a product that addresses the content you mentioned.

Optimize the content for search engines. Ensure that you organically mention keywords that readers seek out in your industry. Sprinkle these in throughout the content so that search engines are able to connect you with the topic and you stay relevant for keywords that matter.

Make it pretty. Every person learns differently. Many readers stay hooked with visuals. Think pictures, videos, infographics, gifs. Dazzle readers with more than just text.

Keep these points in mind as you create content on a regular basis. You’d be surprised with how easily the knowledge you have translates into better rankings, higher traffic numbers, and better leads.

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