As SEOs and internet marketers, we always find ourselves suggesting that clients create “high-quality content,” or “link-worthy content.” But it’s not just something we say. We believe high-quality content is mandatory if you want a good site ranking.
From the headlines of your content to the structure of your sentences and the words you choose, each element is a component that determines how well your content will perform.
Here, we’ll be going over the 3 key elements of high-quality content: language, structure, and headlines.
A web audience will expect you to use a conversational tone in many industries. While some larger, corporate blogs (Forbes, for example) will still stick to a more business-professional voice, overall readers expect the right language, tone and vocabulary needed to engage them, personally.
The key to this is of course, knowing who your audience is. Find out who your audience is and what they know about the topic already. Mind the complexity of the words you select and the length of your sentences, as paragraphs and sentences that are too long or too short result in a loss of engagement.
That said, while you’re writing on the internet, that is not an excuse to throw out all grammatical rules. Quite the opposite, in fact— readers will immediately think your content and brand lack credibility if you have awful grammar or spelling.
Many online writers structure their content in traditional essay format—which consists of long blocks of text. This is horribly ineffective, since web users scan instead of read. Here are a few ways to structure your content so that it’s scannable:
- Use short paragraphs (between 1-4 sentences)
- Use bullet point lists
- Use bold or italics to emphasize points
- Use subheadings to guide your readers through the article. Readers should be able to skim subheadings to get an idea of what your main points are.
- Keep your content long enough to thoroughly cover the subject, but don’t drag it out
- Use images, videos and infographics to give your reader a “visual break”
The headline of your content is the most crucial element for increasing visibility and shares. They’re the first thing people read and are the basis those people use to decide if they want to click-through to your article or not. Just consider these statistics from Copyblogger:
- 80% of people will read your headlines
- But only 20% of those people will read the rest of your content!
And that is why it doesn’t matter how good your content is–if your headline sucks, no one will read it. Don’t make your headline an after-thought. Take the time to make a few variations and select which one you like best.
Now that we’ve gone over the 3 key elements of high-quality content, it’s time to get out there and start creating some! And we guarantee–if you’re willing to put the time and energy into content marketing, you will see lasting increases in ranking and engagement that builds the longer you do it!