Having a pretty website is important, but what makes users want to stick around and read your site is content. Good, rich, valuable content.
Why is writing quality content so important?
You want users to engage with your site. If visitors like reading your blog posts, are interested in the industry news you publish or come to your site for product information; more than likely they will take action. They might click on an ad, buy your product or look up your store address.
Another reason you want good content is to rank higher on search engines result pages. Since early 2011, Google’s new algorithm called Panda has aimed to make the web a better place for content. Panda hates duplicate or irrelevant content, redundant articles, too many ads, old websites and automated content. If you are guilty of any of these, Google will be ranking your site lower, making it harder for visitors to find you.
How do you write good content?
- Original: Your content has to be unique. You cannot reproduce content without being flagged by Google. It may seem obvious, but a lot of content on the web is duplicated. For example, if you have an online store, you likely copied the product description directly from the original catalog. It may seem logical but this will get you ranked lower in search engines. Instead, try to bring value by crafting descriptions your users want to read. Make sure you source anything that you have not written.
- Unique: The original content rule is valid from one site to another (do not steal content from another site), but also don’t copy content within your own website. Do not write your “About Us” on both the About Us page and the Contact Us, even if you content is original, it will not be unique. You also should not have several pages describing the same service; if it is the same it needs to be on one unique page.
- Recent: Both customers and search engines like sites that are frequently updated. Share your company news, update your product list, post customers testimonials or write a blog. Visitors will like to have something new to read and to be kept informed and search engines will like to see you are still producing original content.
- Lengthy: This one is more important to search engines than to us humans. Panda likes a lot of original content; one hundred words won’t cut it. Ideally, any page should have more than 300 words of original content.
Websites that have not been following these rules have seen their ranking drop dramatically, as well as their visits. It may seem like a lot of trouble, but your site will only be better and your users will thank you for it.