You’re a small business owner and you’re doing your due diligence and having your website marketed via SEO (Search Engine Optimization). It’s been working okay for a few years but lately, your SEO webmaster is hounding you (more than usual) for MORE CONTENT! You might be asking yourself, WTF? Do I REALLY need to add more content to the website or is my chain just being pulled here?
The Story Behind Needing More Content
As an SEO webmaster myself, I am here to tell you that there is nothing more annoying and aggravating for your SEO person than to constantly hound and beg for anything from you. It’s an extremely time consuming and often futile expense of energy but these days, there’s no getting around the fact that content has become the emperor of the SEO universe. And here’s why…
“Google is ever more sophisticated at picking sites which creep up the rankings and sit on the throne – page 1 of a search. Never has quality content been so important in determining your rank, according to Julian Thompson, Head of Digital at MOSH, the country’s top social media agency. ‘In the past people believed that simply repeating key words and phrases was a big factor in improving your page’s leap up the list but Google is way cleverer than that.” (Scoop Media)
With the last 3 major updates that Google has implemented, Penguin, Panda and Hummingbird, the importance of content (amongst a few other factors) has increased tremendously. Basically, Google is saying to all website owners….
Give your readers quality information that they are looking for and you will be rewarded with higher rankings.
Any search engine’s job is to give their users the best list of websites that match what the user is looking for. Doesn’t matter if it’s pizza or how to treat the flu. Google just makes it more difficult because they are trying to essentially “guess” what the user’s intentions are. But make no mistake about it, whatever algorithms are put into place be it by Google, Bing, Yahoo, AOL, etc. The bottom line is that ALL websites are scored by the words on their pages. (Google also looks at about 200+ other factors but it all starts with the words.)
If you’re doing your website’s content writing “in house” I recommend the Content Marketing Strategies for Professionals book.
Okay, So I Need Content – Do I Really Need So Much?
I won’t waste your time, the answer is YES. Here’s why…
If you have Google Webmaster tools set up for your website, go take a look at the search queries that your site is currently generating. You’ll probably see anywhere from 3 to 20 keyword phrases that get several visitors. But I will bet that you see many more that get just ONE visitor. If all those ONE visitor keyword phrases had their own page targeting that specific keyword phrase, you would get more than just one visitor. The reason is that it’s difficult to write content targeted to more than 2 or 3 keyword phrases. In fact, many experts will tell you to just target ONE keyword phrase per page. So, writing content specific to ONE keyword phrase will rank the page higher and bring in more visitors.
Small Business Owners And Website Content
Small business owners barely have time to run their business so finding the time to write something just seems impossible. On the other hand, the cost of paying someone to do the writing can definitely add up if you have to write as much as your SEO webmaster is asking. So, what can you do?
Eve Gelman has some GREAT tips…
1) “Stop focusing on adding content, and start concentrating on identifying and fulfilling customer needs. Do you often answer the same questions from customers? Ask them what they want to know and publish blog posts, case studies, newsletters, tutorials, reports, resource lists or podcasts to answer their questions. Customers will appreciate finding the information easily on your website without having to call you. You’ll appreciate the cost/time savings.”
This is a great way to approach content writing. Answer your clients’ questions. This allows you to do it in small, manageable pieces. Adding content doesn’t always mean you have to write 1000 words on a topic. It can be as simple as writing down the question and your answer. Send it off to your SEO webmaster and I guarantee that he/she will be ecstatic!
2) “Content that generates the most benefit for your web site is also content that fulfills your customers’ needs. Stop focusing on SEO for its own sake. Not all content will boost your traffic and search rankings. Choose content for which there is demand but not that much supply. It just takes a little homework to find out what topics or products are searched for frequently but not well covered on many other websites. By demonstrating your expertise with this unique content, you’ll start to be established as an authority in your field.”
I have been telling my clients for years and years that it’s important to “showcase your expertise”. Eve is right when she says that “Not all content will boost your traffic…” It’s important to write for your customers as well.
3) “Think visually. We live in the age of Pinterest and Instagram. It’s important that you discover visual content that you enjoy developing so you’ll be more likely to create it on a regular basis. Whether it’s making videos, or sharing photos, creating Infographics or interactive games, or producing webinars and slide shows, always think about what visual images will grab your customers’ attention.”
Content doesn’t ALWAYS have to be words, it can be visual. Pinterest and YouTube are two excellent marketing venues and ones that you should absolutely NOT ignore.
The point I want to leave you with is to not be afraid or overwhelmed by the task of adding content to your website. Start off small and build from there. It takes time to write, I know. It will take time for that writing to bring in traffic as well. But in the end, it’s SO WORTH IT!!!!