Content writing… what is it? How can it be a benefit to your business and specifically, how can it improve your rankings within the search engines?
When you write content, if you’re not writing it for your audience or you’re not writing it to the right customer, you are making a mistake. Oftentimes business owners will write content as if they’re talking to other people in the industry, but not to the consumer.
Whether using jargon or acronyms, content is just not written to the right type of person. It is so important to write as if you are writing to a fifth grader. Take out the long complex words and trying to sound so sophisticated. Convey what you do very simply and very clearly.
Your Readers Are Overwhelmed with Content
Reading or writing at a lower grade level would create less work for whoever is reading your content. It is not about lowering the quality of your content but making it more digestible.
Your customers are so overwhelmed. There are so many websites they are able to consume, so much content so quickly at their fingertips, that when it’s not written in such a way that’s simple to understand and to digest, they end up just skipping over it.
Writing to The Right Person
Are we writing for a specific individual at a level that anyone could understand, or are we writing for the search engines and what we think they want to see?
Always write as if you are speaking directly to your ideal customer.
Based on the latest algorithms of Google and the latest updates that they have made, you want to be writing to who the customer is, because it is all about natural language.
If your content sounds like it is out of a textbook, it is probably not going to rank well. This certainly is very different than the way the content was, and Google’s algorithms were 10 years ago. Today it’s about making sure that the content is written to the user.
Their algorithms are good enough to understand who they need to show the sites to, but at the same time, they also can interpret when a business is writing to a different person.
Google’s Algorithms know what to look for
The algorithms are to a point that they will promote casual conversation language as opposed to technical writing. That is in line with what we are talking about, writing to a lay person, or to a fifth grader. Do not go out of your way to over-complicate your speech and get to the point quickly.
A Tale of Two Descriptions, Which Do You Prefer?
Here is an example of some text that was pulled off a website from an E-commerce site. There they were using it as a description:
Ivory interiors light sand color makes it easy to monitor food while cooking ensuring less sticking and burning.
A light colored interior and makes it easy to check on food to prevent sticking and burning.
Without even telling you what the product is, at least you can get a grasp of what it is going to do. So often people are involved with trying to overdo all the text when they really need to be focused on what is the actual point.
Instead of getting too hyper-focused on sounding at too high of a level, better just get to the point quickly about what it is and what it can do.
Tools to Help You Write Better Content
There are a lot of tools out there. One of the most basic ones is in Microsoft Word from the tool tab, you can go to spelling and grammar, and then in the options, they have a feature that shows you readability statistics. Ultimately you want to go to the bottom and try to find the higher the better for the reading of ease. But you really just want to make sure that you don’t have passive sentences, duplicate content that doesn’t add value.
Another tool is Grammarly, they offer a digital writing tool using artificial intelligence and natural language processing to help you improve the content and flow of your work, and should be considered if you are having trouble elevating your content game.
Things to Stay Away From
- Plagiarized content
- Duplicate Content
- Passive Sentences
- Anything that does not add value
Write to The Individual
When we are talking about content writing, we are talking about writing to an individual person. At the end of the day, people want to do business with people, and you need to write for people. When you are not writing to try to stuff keywords in or to convey more context, you just need to remember you write for people.
Do not purposely use words that are too difficult for an average person to understand. Try to get an idea in your mind of exactly the person you want to talk to. Then speak directly to them. That should be the purpose.
Get To The Point
Let’s get to the point quickly. By doing so, we have the best chance of not only appealing to the right person. We can do more than appeal to the person we’re trying to make a sale to, or trying to educate. But we will also be rewarded over time by the search engines if we create content that is readable and is best for optimization.
Take Your Time
Writing simply can sometimes take more time. It can be tricky. Being able to articulate something in a simple fashion shows a mastery of that information.