Google’s modern fixation with content.

In this day and age of content marketing, everyone is striving to create the best web content they can.

But what makes for the best content out there? How can you make sure your content is meaningful and original?

How can you be sure you aren’t just duplicating the ideas that everyone else has already put out there ad nausaeum?

What makes content “duplicate content”

Does it appear in more than one place? If so, then it’s duplicate content. In other words, more than one web address or URL. This can negatively impact search results. It doesn’t always, but it can.

Why is duplicate content a big deal anyway?

Well…there are a few reasons:

  • Search engines won’t know which to include. They get confused.
  • They also won’t know which one to rank.
  • It can affect traffic for site owners.
  • Link equity gets diluted.
  • You don’t get the visibility you want or deserve.

Did you know?

That if your site has different URLs both with and without the “www.” prefix, and the content lives on both pages, then you have effectively duplicated your own content and diluted your own results? This is something you may want to be careful of.

Ask yourself what value your content holds

Do you provide information that people are going to want to read? It really doesn’t matter if it’s a blog or an online magazine or some other type of site. Do people want to read it?

Don’t just shove in keywords

You’re going to just look silly if you do. Let the keywords come naturally. If the keywords don’t flow with the readability, your readers will be able to tell. And so will Google.

Don’t just infodump – Engage the reader as well

If you are just shoving information at your reader without it being something that they can connect to and engage with, they are not going to stick around.  There is a fine line between your content writing being informative and it being so info heavy that your readers fall asleep.

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But how can I make sure I always have meaningful content?
Writing is hard work!

First, you must make sure you define meaningful, and this can get tricky because it is going to differ by each individual.  Some basic ideas for content writing:

  • Unique, original, and relevant
  • People can take something away or get something out of your page
  • Users can find a way to connect with the content that they find on your site
    • Engaging photos
    • Infographics
    • Videos
    • Engaging content that keeps them reading until the very last word

Some content strategy tips:

1.) Keep your content visually appealing. Don’t go overboard with the graphics or anything but keep the format and styling of your content in a manner that is pleasing to the eye for your readers and easy for them to read.

2.) You can always poll your readers and ask them what kind of content they want to see more of and then create posts based off their suggestions.

3.) Brainstorm with other bloggers or content writers for post and content ideas.

4.) Take on a guest writer. This allows for a unique perspective and keeps the content fresh without letting yourself get burnt out.

5.) Interview someone in a relevant field to what you write about or what your readers like to read about. Coming up with a few questions for someone to answer takes far less time than writing an entire post.

6.) Case studies can provide some meaningful content because they can provide a lot of information. There can be good case studies and bad case studies.

7.) Review stuff. Pick a thing or a service and write about it. What did you like? What did you not like? Give enough detail so that people can make an informed decision. But if it is a book or movie, don’t spoil the plot for others.

8.) Share your success. Tell people how you got to where you are. But try to avoid boasting. You don’t want to sound like a braggart.

9.) Share failures. What were your biggest challenges? And what did you learn from those challenges? What would you do differently if you could go back and do it over again?

10.) Check Google for what’s hot and trending right now and write about it. Look into learning more from a professional and perhaps they can provide some SEO services and help you might need.

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When all else fails, some of these tips might help jump-start your creativity.

  • Take a walk and clear your mind.
  • Tell a personal story. But be careful not to implicate or embarrass someone else.
  • Expand your cultural horizons. Explore something about a different culture that you didn’t know about. Try a new food, listen to music in a different language.

The most important thing is to make sure that your thoughts are your own. It’s okay to take inspiration from what other people are doing or to research your topics, but make sure that you check yourself to be sure you are not plagiarizing content from other sites.

There are a lot of great tools out there to help you with this and you can find those with a simple Google search. If you want to reference something from another site, be sure to give credit where credit is due.

Above all else, make sure that you are connecting with your readers. That is the biggest step to creating engaging and meaningful content, and what is going to keep your readers coming back time and time again. Our Portland web design team can get you started on the right path for creating an optimal content strategy that works well for your business niche.