Tips on How to Write Great Content

7/25/2012

Kristin Lesko, SEO Content Strategist

Q: For my website and blogs, what is more important-the actual "content" or how it's presented (displayed)?

A: Much like when you wonder which arm rest belongs to you at the movie theater, this is actually a "trick question." The short answer is: Both the substance of your content and the presentation of it are equally important to writing great content. They're significant from a user-friendliness standpoint, but also from an SEO perspective. First and foremost though, you should always write great content for your target audience first, search engines second.

The content you choose to include within your website or blog should always be relevant to your target audience and the topics that they care about. For example, if your company sells outdoor sporting goods and your blog is about outdoor activities, you probably wouldn't want to write a blog post on the "Top 10 Looks from New York Fashion Week." This type of content isn't likely to appeal to someone who enjoys camping in the woods, where the nearest bathroom is a Great Oak. But you could-and should-cover topics in your company blog that may not always directly correlate back to your products or services, so long as it focuses on a subject your audience cares about. Using the same example of an outdoor activities blog, you could write a post on recycling, as many people who are outdoorsy could potentially also care about the environment. Whereas you may have more room to explore a wide range of topics in your blog posts, your website should stay focused on your products or services-and the company that stands behind them.

In addition to writing great content with substance, you must also present content in a way that is appealing to your readers. You could produce website or blog content that's so well-written, it's almost poetic. (Shakespeare's got nothing on you.) But if it's presented as large blocks of running text instead of organized into clear and concise paragraphs, you might stop your audience from reading it before they even start. To avoid this:

  • Use compelling images that visually drive your point home.
  • Properly indent your paragraphs, or space them out so it's easy to tell where one thought ends and another begins.
  • Use bullet-pointed lists (like this one). Search engine bots love them, and so do readers.

When you write for your reader and present your copy in a way that's easy for them to follow, you have a much better chance at driving traffic to your site-and generating ROI through well-written online content.

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