You’re ready and you’ve decided. Today is the day that you’re going to write that epic article!
Where the feck do you start?
And, how will it become a GREAT read?
Well, if you’re a TL;DR kinda person then it’s all about telling a great story and connecting with the reader (and getting them to take some form of action).
If you want to learn more then sit back, grab a drink and let’s dive in.
What is Great Content?
There’s a lot of discussion on the internet about what quality is.
It’s because quality is subjective and different people have different opinions on what the word quality means. And that’s understandable.
A few years ago, the phrase “content is King” surfaced in the internet marketing community and everyone jumped on the band wagon. They wanted to praise their efforts in content marketing and lots of white-hat SEOs took it as a signal that their efforts in shaping “quality content” and not building links were being rewarded. They were, but not in the way they thought.
What this did was improve everyone’s content on the internet. It encouraged individuals to write more for the user than for search engines, and to actually think about wanting the reader to do something other than click the ad on the page or an affiliate link.
(However, I’d be naive if I didn’t point out that this isn’t always the case with SEO. Search engine optimization is seldom linear.)
Quality written content should have structure, visual appeal (photos or graphics sprinkled), be free from spelling errors (they is da worst), be clearly formatted and easy to read, show the expertise of the writer(s), show trustworthiness, and be of value to the reader.
Why is Quality Important?
Great content should tell the story it needs to the reader without that individual becoming confused. A situation you don’t want is for someone to come to your website, read over a page or two of content, not feel any connection whatsoever, and then head to one of your competitors because “they understand me and sound professional”.
Your copy became forgettable – maybe due to its low-level quality or inability to create a connection – and they’re gone.
I also believe that any piece of content should have an end goal in mind: for the reader to take some form of action – such as signing up for a list, hiting the click-to-call button, reading more content to have a deeper connection to you as a business, joining your Facebook group, completing a contact form, reaching out for a discovery call/consultation, and so son.
A pretty major part of the content being quality is that it will rank higher in Google.
If the page has a significant amount of words, the author has done his or her research, and the page is properly structured for SEO then it makes sense that it will rank higher than others of lesser quality (and it should see a loving boost if a few links point its way too).
If what someone reads on your website convinces them you have the authority on this particular topic and you can be seen as a trusted source, then you’ll probably see that individual visit other pages on your website and potentially reach out for help or guidance.
Improve the quality of the written content on your website and improve your CTR and CRO rates.
How To Know What To Write About
When you’re thinking about content for a blog, an affiliate website or your sales page, the first thing that should get the cogs turning in your brain is intent.
What do you want the visitor/reader to do once they’ve read over the content?
Once you have that clear in your mind you can go about thinking how to do that. If you believe you need a series of emails over the course of 6-8 weeks to convince someone to buy something from you then it’ll all start from that person clicking on a search result in Google or tapping an ad on their Facebook feed.
They’ll then go to a landing page that’s setup to do one thing: create trust and get them to signup for your lead magnet/email list, which in turn will set them up to receive the high-quality content through their email.
If your choice is to do some content marketing (writing a series of pages/posts on your website in an effort to encourage Google to send you traffic; like this piece you’re reading now) then you’ll definitely want to complete your keyword research and see what people are searching for.
One key step many SEOs instruct us to do is to look through what is ranking in Google and Bing, and then make the content that we’re about to write a whole lot better (known as the Skyscraper technique). Then, they go and do their wizardry magic through outreach to gain some important backlinks that helps these content pieces hit page one.
If you’re trying this yourself and you’re stumped about what to write then I recommend having a read through this page.
How Do You Plan Out Great Content?
There’s a famous saying: if you want to consume an elephant then you should eat it one piece at a time. Now, no one really eats elephants but this point is important. It’s best to plan out what you’re going to do and then cross off key sections along the way.
Like chapters in a book, some people find it’s good to start by putting down the key points of the blog post or article they’re about to write.
Some people will write one section and then move to the next, while others will write bits under each heading randomly when the thoughts come mind – constantly revising and changes the content so that one section flows to the next.
Instead of writing for writing’s sake, having a structure like this might help you produce a great piece of quality written content that has everything contained that you want.
If you find out at a later stage that it doesn’t then you can go back and edit it.
Being Consistent and Maintaining a Standard
When you publish online there are a lot less restrictions than if you’re publishing offline. Books, periodicals, magazines and newspapers generally have editors or an editorial team to check through your written English and format it according to a specific style. Those restrictions (safety nets) aren’t generally there when you publish online (unless it’s for a large site with an editorial team).
So, what should you do?
It’s important to maintain consistency when either you write content yourself or hire it out to a content writing team. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
Title – this is what will draw readers in, so it needs to entice someone to click on it and want to read what’s contained. You could write down a few different titles and then decide which one you’ll choose. (Some businesses also split test their use of titles to see which one gets the highest click-through rate.)
General layout & formatting – consistency in your formatting is crucial. If you want the reader to take some form of action or next step then it’s important to have everything laid out well: a wall of text isn’t going to encourage anyone to read what you’ve written (well, maybe your parents but that doesn’t count, does it?).
Images – these help communicate the message you want to get across to the reader. They can be photos, images of people, screenshots or other images. They don’t need to be of super high quality, but it’s important that they’re of enough quality to not become pixelated on larger screens. If that happens it won’t build trust.
Headings & Subheadings – lots of readers will scan pages online. You’ve probably done it just now: looking at the headings and the parts in bold to see which bits you want to read more about. That’s true for most people, so it makes sense to have headings, subheadings and other signposts to help people find the content they want to read in the quickest way possible.
Calls-to-action – what do you want the user to do? Once you know that, the written content piece can be shaped to encourage them to take that action. Calls-to-action don’t need to be bright red buttons saying “CLICK ME!” They can also be subtle hints in the content like: Trying out Write Stop’s copy writing services is easy. It’ll take a couple of minutes and you can order as little as 1,000 words, by going here.
Internal & external links – both internal links (to other pages on the same website) and external ones (to other websites on the internet) help people to read more about the topic you’re writing about. They can also have a positive impact on SEO.
Spelling & Grammar – lots of writers will review what they’ve written, but lots of times they just won’t see their mistakes because they’re too close to the words. This is when editing and proofreading is best done a week or so after you’ve written the content. Having web pages on your website that are free from errors helps to develop trust and displays a professional appearance to readers.
Think About SEO
There are two main ways you can get people to read your content: advertising or marketing. Google Ads and Facebook Ads are advertising: where you push people to your landing or content page in the hope they take action (and you generally pay per impression or per click).
SEO is marketing: where you create linkable content (sometimes known as assets) that usually form a series and gather links from other websites on the internet. This will then help you rank higher in search engines and pulls people to your content.
But, there are also other points to consider when thinking about the actual structural elements of your page/website.
The algorithms for both Google and Bing (two large and familiar search engines) are quite different and focus on key elements of your website’s pages. This means that the research part of the writing process is important.
Keyword research – this is when you look at what is being searched by readers and their intent: are they looking for information to fix something on their own, are they looking to buy something, or are they wanting to connect with the best professional team in their local area? These are questions the writer should be asking themselves when carrying out keyword research.
There’s lots of other elements like competitive analysis of the keywords (how hard it will be for your new piece to rank in the search engines) and long-tail keyword phrases. If you want more information about this then go to this page or this page and read some more in-depth information about keywords and research.
You’ll also find that having a specific amount of the keywords in your content will help it to be found online, but that’s beyond the scope of this piece of content.
Meta data – largely a technical part, but the elements of the title, H tags and other on-page factors can all help more readers to discover your content. One key part of this is having an enticing title that appears in the search results.
Content that works together – I’ve mentioned it before, but it’s worth highlighting again. Lots of websites on the internet write and publish multiple pages that center around a specific topic. These interlink with one another in different ways and help communicate to the reader (and the search engine bots) that the written content is worth reading (and promoting).
If you want to read more about SEO and writing then read our blog post here.
Why Conversion is Important
You’re not writing for your business website with the goal of massaging your ego and showing it to friends: you want eyes to read what you’ve written and for those individuals to do some thing afterwards. That’s why conversion is important.
A successful piece of written content on your website can have a significant impact on your business if it’s given the help it needs: mostly additional supporting content and some back links (see above) to get people to see it.
Once people are reading your content it’s important that they then take action. If you increased your conversion rate by 10% then that can (and should) have a significant impact on your bottom line (when a person goes through all of the stages of your sales process).
Similarly, if you saw a 5% increase in the open rate, and a 10% increase in the click-through rate, for an email campaign then that means more people are seeing your content AND doing something about it.
This is why conversion rates are sooo important and why the proper researched and written piece of content can have a huge impact on your business’s bottom line.
Key Steps to Writing a Great Piece of Content
When you want to produce a high-quality piece of written English content, the following steps could be used as a guide:
- Understand who the reader is and what they want
- Create a plan/structure to see how the page will look when complete
- Research the topic and read what others are writing
- Decide what action you want the reader to take
- Write the content according to your structure/plan
- Add in any images, links or headings
- Read over and edit the content to ensure consistency & proper formatting
When you sit down and actually write the content you’ll want to have at least a rough guide about what you want to achieve. Your writing should not only include all of the information that you know the reader will want, but it should be engaging and prompt them to take action.
Following a similar structure each time you write will help you achieve more with the words you type.
Why Hire Content Writers for Your Business Website?
If you’ve got to the stage where you want to work with someone to write content for your website: to increase the number of leads, signups or discovery calls/consultation requests, then it’s important to have the right strategy. This can help accelerate business growth in the right direction.
As a business owner, your time is limited. You need to concentrate on running your business, managing the marketing, promotion and retention of customers/clients in an effort to grow.
Outsourcing your content writing needs makes good business sense: you don’t have time to do all of the research, writing, editing and fact checking that’s required.
When you hire a content writer it’s important that they feel and understand your business. At that point they can help to boost your digital presence on search engines, communicate effectively with the reader, and encourage calls to action in the copy.
If you’d like to talk about how we can help then get in touch by going to this page and reading about our content writing services.