The whole internet revolves around quality content but no one really ever tells you what it is? I was one of the lucky ones that seemed to create quality content by accident, without knowing that it was actually a necessity.
Quality content on a website is not just content that gets a lot of social shares or comments, although that helps, but there is more to creating the best content.
We all talk about needing quality content, we all know Google loves it, but why are some people still missing the point?
This is what I think quality content is..
Quality Content Must Have Personality
The content itself cannot have personality, but you can show yours through your writing. I actually think this is one of the biggest reasons that so many people like to read my articles. I like to make up words and say silly things in amongst the seriousness of education.
Does your reader get a feeling of who you are? Can they smile at you when reading your article? If you can make some feel something from your writing, you are making a connection.
When publishing content on a business blog, the personality factor is often ignored. This is a horrible mistake that most large companies make as people love to make a connection, no matter how famous or big your company is.
Some people have a hidden story teller hiding within, but they just can’t put it all into words. Others have no problem writing but have terrible spelling and grammar that ruins the readers’ experience.
You do not have to be perfect, but your content needs to please the reader and not p*ss them off!
I have a friend who can write great stories but her punctuation and grammar are just the absolute worst I have ever seen. She would have one sentence last for two paragraphs and I would lose my breath trying to read it.
One day she published an article on the local papers website about the local political candidates. She was abused in the comment section. People said stuff like, “how can we believe you when you can’t even spell”.
This was a harsh lesson that I hope you do not have to experience.
The Whole Story and Nothing but the Whole Story
I was looking through an article gallery the other day and saw an article titled “How does a computer work”, and thought to myself “WOW that must be a long article”. But when I looked at the article it was only just over 400 words long. How can you explain how a computer works in 400 words?
When I see that title I expect a decent explanation of how a computer works. To create quality content you need to live up to your title and cover the topic you promised thoroughly. If the article title was “How does a computer boot – The first few seconds only”, then I would see that this might be a shorter article.
When I look around the internet there are a hell of lot of half stories being told just to get content out and published. Very sad.
Stand Out From the Pack
There are so many websites on the internet and probably millions just covering the same topic you have. This is why you have to stand out and be yourself. There is no point regurgitating content as the internet is a very public place. Both Google and the human readers can easily figure out if your content is useful or not.
Tips to Stand Out
- Write original content
- Don’t be a yes man
- Be an individual like the lady pictured right
- Do something controversial or different (maybe give-away everything like I do)
- Don’t be a sheep (Bah bah)
Golden Nuggets for the Reader
The reader will think your content is fantastic if they can take away some piece of knowledge they did not have before. They will love you even more if you have the answer to their current problem.
Think about it, when someone searches in Google for something, they are usually looking for an answer to something in particular. If you pretend to have the answers, this will not work, you need to have the exact content that your title promised.
You can ruin quality content by simply not formatting your text correctly. I am one of those people that cannot stand having a crooked picture on the wall, so badly formatted text is a nightmare for me!
Text dumped on the page with no formatting at all is even worse!
My quick tips for formatting your article:
- Break your article into short paragraphs, easy to read chunks.
- Never forget to add subheadings as it adds to the drama of your article.
- Make both the title of your article and the subtitles interesting! (look at mine above)
- SEO helps me format my article by using subheadings and attractive related words.
- See more tips about writing killer content.
Admit That SEO Does Matter
Many webmasters think that with the recent Google updates, we no longer need SEO to get our sites ranked in Google. Not true.
We do need SEO and we need to include this within our quality content. I recently wrote an article about writing SEO content and it talks about writing for humans first and search engines second. Blending both takes skill and it all adds up to quality content.
When you are lacking something in your content it is like watering down your beer. It just wouldn’t taste right. (Please note: I am only guessing that watered down beer is bad as I do not personally drink it. Just sounded good.)
You need meta tags and descriptions, keywords in your articles, and more. If you do not do this, how can people find your content and how do they know what it is about?
A Professional Theme
I know you will be saying to yourself ”Hey a theme has nothing to do with quality content”, but I believe it does. I will tell you why you might need a premium WordPress theme to parade your quality content on.
Anyway back to why you need a decent theme.
Earlier today I was reading a persons comment on my blog. I thought the comment was very insightful and it enticed me to click through to this fellows website from the commentluv link he left on my site. Shock horror! I was faced with a blogger Google blog (nothing against Blogger) with a red background and white writing and that is it! There was no style and the template was one of Bloggers old one. Now I didn’t even stay to read a word because the blog was just so damn ugly and I think it actually partially blinded me.
Immediately I thought to myself, “well too bad if the guy did have great content”. Therefore you can have all the great content in the world, but if your website visitor doesn’t like the look of your site, your content is as good as rubbish. Remember that post I published called Content is not the only king? It clearly shows you why having great content is only part of the package.
Show Your Sources
Professionally written content will show where the sources for the information they have provided originated. This is not always possible though, but I think Google loves it.
For example in this article I have no real sources because I made all of this information up myself. The images are mine and I even had permission for the photo of the tall lady taken at Splendour In the Grass at Woodford. So this article is fine, but on my computer tips website, I often use Microsoft as a source for information and mention this at the bottom of my articles.
This way I am not taking someone’s information without their permission or credit for what they own. Adding these outgoing links is not going to hurt your SEO, it is going to help your rankings.
The University of Sydney defines using sources in your article as a way to to identify, build and support arguments or research which demonstrate the understandings we have acquired.
Images Also Equal Quality Posts
You need to have some kind of graphics included with your articles. Have you ever heard the saying “an image can say 1000 words”? (Might have twisted this a bit.)
Anyway you all know that images add to quality content and simple text on a page is just not the whole package that readers are looking for. Images are both visually appealing and great for SEO. ( If you add in the correct ALT tags)
Either way, an image added to an article is the icing on the cake. I like to add and one image to every 600 words of text. I just do not feel that one image is enough when you have longer articles.
Add Video or Audio
I know people reading this will moan and groan when they see that they need video or audio on their site. I totally understand that some of you out there do not like your voices being heard or your faces seen on camera. That’s ok because you can simple embed a YouTube video or a video from a site that offers embed code and use this to engage your audience.
It does not matter where the video comes from, (must be OK to embed though) as long as it is relevant to your subject and will add engagement to your article.
I personally have a YouTube channel and I am more than happy for anyone to grab a video from there providing they do not alter the code provided by YouTube. I am sure there are many other people that would allow the same.
Can Quality Content Get Any Better?
Just say you have covered all your bases here and produced the best content you possibly can. No way could Google or your readers ask for anything more!
When I first started building websites to make money online I never thought that blogging involved so much writing, however I have persevered because I realized the website content was important. Some content I produce takes me days to finish, so yes, quality content is not easy for anyone.