Create Content That Works (More Visitors, Leads, Sales & Links!)
Yeah.. yeah.. yeah.. content is king. All of the SEO guru’s yell this until they are blue in the face. They tell you to produce “high quality” content but they don’t tell you WHY or HOW.
Posting content on your website blindly without a plan isn’t going to help you rank at all. Paying a few dollars for a “native” 500 word article isn’t going to do you any good either. There is a place and purpose for everything.. those 500 word native articles do have a use but they shouldn’t be anywhere near your site! If you post them you are asking for trouble.
Know why the super guru’s are stuck on the content is king bandwagon? Because good content WILL keep visitors on your website.. it will also push them to fill out forms and make purchases.. and it will get them to click the Twitter and Facebook share buttons and you might even get some decent links out of it also.. just the way Google likes it.
I know you aren’t going to just write content all day “hoping” to get some links – don’t be stupid. You have to build them.. you have to buy them (shhh don’t tell Cutts).. but you can also get some natural ones with good content to help you stay under the radar. But even take the links out of the picture.. good content makes you appear to be legit and it will help you get your visitors to do whatever you want them to do on your website.
Want more leads? Then post good content that makes your visitors believe you know what you are talking about.
Want more sales? Then your content better make whatever you are selling sound like the best thing since sliced bread.
Here is a list of simple tips to help you create better content..
If you follow this advice you will be able to say “CONTENT IS KING” (crazy.. I know right?) and sound like a REAL badass guru. Just kidding.
Use these 14 tips to help you write better content!
1. Talk to your reader directly
You want to keep your reader hooked until they finish reading, so use the word “You” a lot. Don’t just wrote a generic post.. write as if you are speaking directly to the person that is reading your content. The reader will feel like you are talking to them and won’t stop reading halfway through. When they feel like it is more personal they feel obligated to read it all. Longer time reading = better chance they will do what you want on your website.
2. Write how to, list and numbered posts
Writing a how to post and a numbered post allows you to take regular info and make it more fun to read (notice I do it in my articles). If you took the same topic and wrote a post without breaking it up into a how to or numbered post will it get read? Sure some might.. but if you want to get a better response turn it into a how to or numbered post. You can make a boring post more appealing by breaking the main points into a list. You can also transform older content into new content by turning it into a list or numbered post.
3. Tell your reader what you want them to do at the end of the post
Trying to collect email addresses? Then put a form at the end of your post and ask the reader to submit their info. Want them to buy a product that you just wrote a review about? Then have a link and tell them that they can click it to buy whatever you were just talking about.. Think of your readers as children. You have to tell them what you want them to do. When you ask them watch how many will follow your instruction. They aren’t going to do what you want unless you tell them what that is!
4. Don’t give your reader a headache
A lot of your website traffic is going to come at night when the person is off work or they will be surfing the web while at work. They will often have other things on their mind and your website is not their main priority. Keep your content light.. you don’t want to overwhelm them with confusing crap. You aren’t trying to win a research competition.. you can write effective content without drowning the reader with fancy vocabulary and useless facts.
Every post you write needs to have a point. Make your point in the first couple of sentences and then use the rest of your space to back your point. If the point of the blog post is to pump up a certain product your point is “YOU NEED TO BUY THIS” and the rest of your post needs to be highlighting WHY they need it. The benefits.. how it will make their life easier etc. Look at some of the most successful affiliate review sites.. the reviews look like they are written for a child.. but they contain all of the details needed to cause the reader to buy.
5. Write a title that doesn’t suck
If you write a great title people are going to click on it.. we aren’t trying to cure cancer here.. It is very simple common sense. If your content is ranking in the search results a good title will draw people in and they will click it and land on your website. If someone is already on your website and comes in contact with your posts a good title will get them to click over to another page of your website. The longer they are on the better chance that they buy something or give you their email address. A good title is hard to resist so spend some time writing good ones.
6. Don’t write huge paragraphs
Want to know what kind of content works? Look at the biggest and most popular websites on the web. Visit Tech Crunch and Venture beat and see what their content looks like.. It is a bunch of small paragraphs.. a couple sentences in each paragraph. This makes it much easier to read. This is done so the content doesn’t scare anyone off. A bunch of smaller paragraphs looks easier to read than a post with 5 long ass paragraphs that appear to go on forever
7. Show a personality
Even if you are outsourcing your content make sure that the person writing it shows a personality. If your readers feel like they are reading something out of a textbook they aren’t going to come back. Know why all the guru bullshitters have popular blogs? Because they create this personality and the suckers eat it up.. It works. Why do you think SEO noobs line up like lemmings and sign up for every offer Neil Patel puts out there? Because they are brainwashed by his personality! Show a personality through your content and your readers will feel more connected to you and they will become easier to direct. Fill this out.. buy this.. etc. That personal connection goes a long way!
8. Have a strong conclusion
At the end of your content the reader should have fully understood the point you were trying to make and they should know exactly what you want them to do. For example if you are writing a review post about a diet pill affiliate offer you are promoting you want to make sure every possible question is answered in the meat of the post. Does it work? How fast does it work? How much does it cost? Is that a good value? By the time the reader reaches the end of the post they need to know without a doubt that the product is amazing. They should also know how to buy it before they finish reading.
9. First few sentences needs to get them hooked
Using the same example (the diet pill offer) from above here are a few strong opening sentences:
“Are you sick and tired of wasting your money on so-called diet pills that never seem to work? Are you ready for a product that drops the pounds as it claims? Well, I found a product and I lost 11 pounds in just 21 days and I am here to tell you my story.”
The reader is saying “Yes. Yes. Awesome, can’t wait to read it!”
The first few sentences get them excited to the point where they don’t feel like they are being forced to read it. They are interested in the offer and are ready for information.. when they get to the bottom of the content if you did a good job selling the benefits of the product they are likely to turn into a sale.
10. Use videos and good images
Videos are great because they can help to keep someone on your website longer and images are good to break up content and make it look a bit more interesting. If you do use images make sure to optimize them! Some niches get a huge amount of image searches and it’s a good way to pull in some extra traffic.. If you don’t optimize your images you are just lazy.. it takes a few seconds. Sometimes I get sick of using stock images and will make some custom ones using www.canva.com. You can make a lot of cool custom images just using the free version.
11. Format to break it up even more
Short paragraphs are great but if you have posts of just paragraph after paragraph it can still look a little boring.. so use bullets, numbers, bold, etc. Along with making it look better it can help you draw attention to specific parts of your post. Highlight the major selling points. A lot of people that read your content will just browse through it.. but when you use formatting correctly they can get the point with just a quick skim.
12. Encourage comments
A lot of people close comments because they don’t want to deal with the spam. Just use the Akismet plugin and it will stop all the spam and set it to manually approve comments. Other readers will feel more comfortable if they see some positive comments. Get things started by posting a few fake comments (shame on me I know!) about how helpful the post was. If someone just gets done reading a blog post and they see a bunch of comments that say “wow this is great – thanks for taking the time to write this” they are going to feed into it and agree.. this helps to push them to do whatever it is you want them to do.. fill out a email submit.. or make a purchase. This helps to guide them to that path.
13. Post as much as possible
Content is good.. The search engines like to see sites that are updated often.. It allows you to target more long tail keywords if you are posting a lot. It gives visitors a lot to interact with.. You can never have too much content so write a blog post every morning (like I mentioned in point #6 here) or increase your content budget and buy more content.
14. Make your content evergreen
What is evergreen? It means that it will be current down the line. A month from now.. a year form now.. two years from now.. etc. This type of content will really provide you with a huge return because it will continue to work for you long after you first post it.
Everyone around here talks about making an authority website and sadly many think that throwing up 50 random articles will make it an authority. Not even close. Authority websites are created over time and they all start with good content.. Years of content, social sharing, and links make an authority website. So when you are thinking of topics to write about ask yourself if the content will be relevant a month from now.. 6 months from now.. 2 years from now. If it will be then go for it.. because it will continue to work for you as long as your website is up and live and penalty free.
These were just some main points that come to mind off the top of my head, these are solid real content points that the “content is king” crowd won’t share with you. There are a ton more which I’m sure some you can point out and share here too..
Hope you enjoyed the read! Until next time..