If you’ve got an online company and you’re looking for growth, engagement, and higher conversion rates, it’s all about the content you’re creating: how long, how often, how high quality, how you’re presenting it, what kind of topics you’re covering, etc. We would like to show you today how you can improve your content.
If you thought you were doing everything right, but audiences aren’t flocking to your posts, think again – there’s always something you can do to improve what you’re putting out there. Here are 8 different things you can do to improve your content and achieve a better overall ranking on search engines.
1. Think about your audience’s interests/hot or relevant topics
First thing’s first – the things you write about must be in line with your target audience’s interests, and more importantly, they must be relevant and topical. After a while, finding something to write about can become difficult, because you get to a point where you’ve pretty much-covered everything.
When that happens, start thinking about the news you’ve read, interesting things you’ve heard lately, relevant hashtags that are popular at the moment, changes, etc. Anything that is related to your brand and that might interest your readership is going to be a good topic for debate.
And speaking of debate, try to find topics that lend themselves to a discussion, whether in blog posts or social media; that’s going to send your engagement through the roof.
2. Focus on quality over quantity
In the earlier days of SEO, it was all about quantity – churning our loads of content and overstuffing it with keywords was the past. Nowadays, things have changed for the better, and we’re no longer overloading search engines with crappy, poorly written content.
If you want to rank well today, your content not only needs to be original, but it also needs to be well written. Quality is winning over quantity, so good content writers are more precious than ever before. Make sure to find someone who can produce content that is enjoyable, informative, and easy to read. The better your content is, the more people will come back to see what else you’ve got to say. Improve your content with the right author.
3. Offer facts
Improve your content with opinions which are well and good, but a lot of the time with blog posts and social media content, what you want is to back your claims with facts. Audiences love statistics, numbers, percentages, and infographics.
Ideally, you’ll be able to provide an eye-catching, colorful infographic that is easily shareable, but in absence of that, fact-checking your content and backing up your statistics is a great place to start.
You want your audience to know you as someone who knows what they’re talking about, and not someone who’s pulling “facts” out of thin air. This will give you more authority and establish you as a trusted source.
4. Don’t sell too hard
A mistake many brands make is that they sell way too hard in all their content. Whether we’re talking about social media content or blog posts, you a) don’t want to sell in every single post, and b) don’t want to make it obvious you’re selling.
You can mention your products or services – and you should! – if it’s relevant to the topic at hand, and if you’re not obnoxious about it. There’s nothing worse than a post that’s masquerading as a legitimate topic, but is actually just a thinly-veiled excuse to sell.
Instead, try to include your company or products when you’re offering suggestions or putting together lists of the best brands, services, products, etc. As long as you’re discrete about it, no one will blame you for selling a little bit.
5. Make it over 1,000 words
Everyone keeps telling us that audiences’ attention spans are shortening, and no one will read long-form content anymore. But statistics actually show that blog posts that are 1,600 words do best, so people aren’t that flighty, after all.
This just goes to show that thoughtful, high-quality blog posts that dedicate the proper time to exploring a topic are appreciated more than the 20-second Buzzfeed-type listicle. So, next time you don’t think you can post that long article you’ve been working on for three days, think again – your audience may have been waiting for precisely that kind of work.
6. Post regularly
If you’re looking to grow your following, increase engagement and bump your ranking, you’ll have to make a commitment to your blog and social pages and start posting regularly.
When you post infrequently or haphazardly, two things happen: 1) your audience gets bored of checking back to see if you’ve posted or not, and 2) your audience forgets about you entirely.
The secret is to always be fresh in their minds with amazing content by posting reliably. It doesn’t have to be every day (in fact, that can even be detrimental; you know, too much of a good thing and all), but if you post three times a week at the same time, your audience will start to steadily grow.
7. Make it easy to read
It’s true that audiences seem to prefer content around 1,600 words, but they’ve also admitted to only skimming posts, so you’ve got to make your content skim-friendly.
What does that mean, in a practical sense? Simple language, making your points directly, in shorter sentences and short paragraphs. White space is your friend because it increases readability.
In addition, make sure to highlight your main points, so that someone who is skimming can get the main ideas without having to hunker down and read the whole thing. This is a great way to improve your content marekting.
8. Use images to your advantage
Most content is about the words you write, but have you ever heard that a photograph is worth 1,000 words? Well, that’s also true when it comes to online content. Even if the image itself does not summarize your post or it’s not original, it’s a great add-on for your post and improves your content for easy reading.
First of all, it completes your piece nicely and it’s good to have something to help you visualize the point of the article. Second, it’s a very good hook for readers. In the absence of clickbait, people need something to catch their attention and get them to click, and an image is oftentimes the thing that gets them.
The other aspect to think about, here, is that images are a great way to break up content, especially for longer pieces. A wall of text is intimidating and feels like a chore, but short paragraphs that are broken up neatly with accompanying photos seem easier to parse.
What’s the bottom line?
At the end of the day, what is necessary, here, is a focus on the content you are creating. Gone are the days when posting just about anything was acceptable; now, quality reigns supreme, and you’ve got to hook your audience with thoughtful, long-form, fact-based, interesting content.
Thankfully, improving your content doesn’t have to be difficult; these are just a few of the tips you can start implementing today so that your content becomes better with every single post.