Reaching that #1 spot on SERPs (search results) can seem like an impossible task. The internet is the marketplace of the world with more and more businesses trying to claim keywords for themselves. Luckily, Google’s algorithms are constantly searching for new and improved information, trawling new and old pages alike, looking for the most helpful information to offer users. Marketing experts even estimate that conversion rates are 6x higher for sites that use content marketing. This is why writing quality content is one of the most important parts of a digital marketing strategy.
Readability is the ease with which a reader can understand a written text. When writing great content it’s important to know what level of difficulty to write for. As an example, take a look at any law firm’s site. Law pages are often filled with complicated sentences, longer words and language specific to the industry. This language is perfect for building trust and authority with people who are looking for specific services or information.
However, when you compare a law firm’s website to a day nursery’s site, you’ll see stark differences. This is because website expectations are framed by experience. When we think of a lawyer, we think of someone in a suit who speaks in legal jargon. When we imagine a teacher, we think of someone more approachable and friendly.
Your content should reflect these expected perceptions with a level of comprehension that fits the needs of the user. Understanding readability also affects your user experience, an increasingly important aspect of website development.
Tone of Voice
The tone of voice (ToV) goes hand in hand with readability. Word choice, sentence length and more technical grammar all inform your ToV. Before writing, think of your business as a person. What are they like? What adjectives do they use? Are they professional or friendly? Picturing your brand as a person allows you to get into character and use phrases and words that fit that image. Consistency is key so make sure you understand your ToV before writing anything.
Originality is another key ingredient. Not just because of the fresh perspective or take, but also to avoid the dreaded ‘duplicate content’ tag. Originality look at many different aspects of your content. Word choice and order are some key metrics with web crawlers studying a text and comparing it to thousands of other pages to see if any part of the copy is taken from a competitor. This protects you and any other pages from being deemed duplicate content. Duplicate content can cause your page and the page that’s been plagiarized, to be blacklisted and struck from SERPs altogether.
This means that even if you’re writing about a similar topic across your site, it’s important to make sure the bulk of the content is original.
The binding agent in the recipe for success is SEO. While a well-written phrase may delight the reader, if it isn’t optimised with keywords it’s useless. Placing keywords throughout your copy gets your content in front of users. It can shoot you up through the rankings and spread your keyword net with alternative phrasing and lateral connections.
A clever technique is to use a varying length of keywords. Content writers will often research short-tail and long-tail keywords before writing to pepper throughout their copy. This allows Google to index the page and score the content high on the natural value of the insight as well as keywords. It also captures specific and broad searches increasing your hit rate.
These ingredients make for winning content marketing. If you can get the balance right, you’ll see a long term increase in your marketing efforts, from brand awareness to increasing sales. For all you creative marketers out there it’s time to break out your best quill and get writing. If you don’t know your past perfect from your past continuous then try Fifteen Design. We have a team of dedicated wordsmiths who can turn a phrase and make even the most mundane topics sound interesting.