Think you’ve got what it takes to design a terrific-looking website, but your words just don’t seem to cut it? Fortunately, creating great content for a website is not that difficult, as long as you stick to some basic principles with your writing. The little details are what really make a website go from lackluster to brilliant, and these 10 small details can, when properly incorporated into your page, make all the difference between a ho-hum web page and a stunning page that keeps visitors coming back for more.
Did you know that the top ranking sites on Google have at least 900 words of content per page? If you didn’t, you might be focusing on shorter pages rather than optimized pages with the content readers crave. Focus on developing longer content, according to these guidelines:
- Sites with more words in the copy will rank higher in search engine results pages
- The ideal blog post length, from an SEO perspective, is around 2,000 to 2,450 words long
- The ideal blog post length from the reader’s perspective, though, is 1,600 words long
Content Relevance and Context
SEO used to focus on keywords, but Google is getting smarter. In fact, the search engine can actually understand the meaning of words and how they are related to one another, so you should focus on developing content for your readers. Google’s search engine analyzes topics and context, not just keywords, and with every new algorithm gets closer to focusing primarily on the context and relevance of your page.
Grammar & Spelling
If you think grammar and spelling are unimportant, you’re wrong. Google, Yahoo, and Bing are all known to penalize pages in search engine rankings for grammar and spelling mistakes. Beyond that, though, poor grammar and spelling discredits you in the eyes of your customer, while flawless copy makes you look more professional. Make sure you read your copy at least twice before you publish it, and consider hiring an editor to proofread and edit your posts.
According to Nielsen, you can expect around 80% of your users to just scan your web page, so how you format your page is extremely important.
- Use H1/H2 tags to format your headings
- Make use of number lists and bullet points to break down your content
- Keep your sentences and paragraphs short.
- Use bold and italics to highlight important parts.
Readability is how easy your text is to read and understand. The highest ranking web pages are easier to read, so make sure to use the Flesch reading ease formula to figure out how easy your text is to read. To help you along, here are a few tips:
- Use shorter sentences and paragraphs
- Use the active verb form at all times, avoiding passive verbs.
- Remove clutter and unnecessary words
- Limit the use of adverbs and adjectives
Images & Video
Including an image or video for each new chapter of your post will help your page rank higher in search engines. This is because blog posts with images and videos are more engaging for visitors, and the top ranked web sites have an average of 7 images. Remember, though, that an image has to be at least 32 pixels by 32 pixels to count!
Do you know how Neil Patel increased sales by 185%? He did this by using case studies, which provided expertise to his posts. People want to read posts by experts who can delve deep into a topic and explain it, so make sure your posts are well-researched and detailed.
Social Media Shares
If you want to really boost your indexation time and search results, utilize social media. In fact, content that gets extensively tweeted about can be indexed in 50% less time than content that isn’t tweeted about. The more social media shares you have, the higher your search engine ranking will be. Make sure you have social media buttons on all of your pages, and include a call-to-action for people to share your content.
Google Internal/External Links
Make sure you link to related articles within your own site. You should know that 9 out of 10 sites ranked at first place in SERPS have at least one link to a related page within the same site. Make sure it’s related content, though, or you might find yourself penalized by Google in the search engine rankings.
High Quality Comments
Finally, encourage comments on your posts! High quality comments can generate even more search traffic, and they engage your reader with the content. Be sure to properly moderate your comments, though, because spammy unrelated comments can hurt your ranking and make you look bad in the eyes of your readers.
By following these 10 key principles, you can make your web site even more effective than it already is. Your stellar layout and design are only a portion of what makes people keep coming back to your site—following these guidelines about your content is really the most important thing, nowadays.