Throughout my time in the SEO industry, I’ve had the chance to evaluate thousands of websites and have taken many mental notes about factors that make a great site and those that don’t. Why does content matter? It’s simple: credibility. Without credibility, your chance of converting viewers into customers goes downhill fast. It’s vital that visitors to your site see your online business as a trusted resource for the product or service they’re searching for.
If you’ve taken on the task of personally creating and designing your site’s content, here are a few tips to make sure it’s not negatively affecting your image.
Always, Always Use Spell Check
Nothing screams “unprofessional” more than misspelled words and poor grammar. You’d be surprised at the number of sites I’ve reviewed that have a plethora of misspelled words as a result of not using spell check. Always write your text in a word processing program first before putting it on your site. The small extra effort will go a long way.
Less is More – Don’t Be Too Wordy
It’s important that the main pages of your site have a decent amount of content; however, too much content can hurt more than it will help. In reality, very few people actually read every word on a page – most viewers scan it to find what they’re looking for. Using clear headlines and bullet points can help to get your point across in fewer words than you would use in a paragraph. If you choose to create pages with an extensive amount of content, just make sure it’s relevant. You don’t want your reader to feel like they’ve wasted their time reading the entire page.
Never Use Duplicated Content
Again, you’d be surprised how many sites I’ve seen with copied content from another site. Not only is it considered plagiarism (if not properly sourced), but it can also result in duplicate content penalties from search engines – something you don’t want to mess with. In addition, don’t use the same content for multiple pages on your site just for the sake of having content. When the viewer clicks on a different page, they expect to see different content.
Don’t Use Distracting Elements
Trying to make certain text stand out by using excessive bolding, exclamation points(!!!!!), ALL CAPS, Capitalizing Each Word, and bright colors is usually quite distracting, and frankly, annoying. Occasionally bolding keywords and important sentences are acceptable, but make sure it doesn’t overrun the rest of your text. Don’t turn your page into a rainbow using different colored text. Instead of using distracting elements, it’s usually a better idea to re-word your text to convey the intended meaning.
Always Get a Second Opinion
Nothing could be more valuable to your site than having an actual viewer give you input about what you could do better. Ask a friend, relative, or colleague to look over your text and formatting. You might be surprised to find there were things you initially overlooked.
These are just a few of many tips that can help improve your site content and add credibility to your brand. The extra time you spend making sure your content is in good shape will definitely pay off in the long run.