DIGITAL SANTA PRESENTS – CONTENT
Welcome back to our Christmas blog series ‘Digital Santa Presents …’ With the help of the Digital Santa, we will be talking you through how to optimise your website this Christmas.
This week, Digital Santa is discussing content. Content is one of the three pillars of SEO and high-quality content not only drives people to your site but it can keep them engaged and even convert them into new customers.
The definition and purpose of content
There are two reasons for producing content regularly on your website. Firstly you need to ensure you are fulfilling the needs of your users and secondly, you need to be satisfying the demands on the search engines. Creating content that is fit for your potential customers to read and also for the search engines to crawl can be a tricky tightrope to walk. Anything you produce for your website counts as content. That can be blog posts, news posts, videos, images, and landing pages. Creating fresh content is one of the major factors in order to rank well in Google search results. Having new, relevant content on your website signals the bots to crawl your website for unindexed information. Ensuring that your content contains relevant keywords and interesting, engaging copy will ultimately help your website rank higher in Google.
Structure is everything
Your content must be strategically structured in order to take full advantage of its SEO potential. Aspects of structure, such as length and header tags, are among Google’ top ranking factors.
The ideal length for written content on your website should be a minimum of 500 words. Thin content does not give Google enough information to crawl or your readers enough information about what you’re trying to convey.
Header hierarchy is very important. Your content should make use of header tags to divide the paragraphs and make it easier for your readers. The header tags follow an order of H1, H2. H3, etc. The hierarchy will help Google crawl your content, starting from the most important things, which are the title and then the H tags in declining priority. As SEO best practice, H tags should include relevant keywords wherever possible so they are picked up by the crawlers.
User intent is key
Remember that you are not only creating content for SEO purposes but for your readers as well. Freshness and quantity are not the only factors that will help you rank well and drive traffic. Content intended for the readers and produced carefully can itself prove to be very beneficial. Well-structured text is more enjoyable and easy to read which can lower your bounce-rate. Always keep in mind who your audience is and what their expectations are when they are landing on your website. The content you produce should be naturally written and be informative enough to serve its purpose.
Dynamic and Rich Content
If you are adding video or images to your site it is important that you also include alt text to explain to the search engines exactly what the video or image is. If you are writing alt text for a video, try to be as descriptive as possible. Google can’t read video or image files yet so you need to write as if you are describing your content to someone who can’t see it. Videos and images can affect the page speed so make sure they are compressed where possible to limit this impact. The ideal size for an image is less than 100kbs.
Don’t forget the meta data
All content should have meta titles and meta descriptions. Although these aren’t ranking factors within Google’s algorithm, these pieces of information are visible in Google’s search results and having strong meta data improves your click-through rate. Therefore, make sure you include your target keywords naturally wherever possible.
Keywords all the way
Keywords should be present throughout your content. The most important thing to remember is to insert them naturally in your writing to avoid any ranking penalties.Keywords shouldn’t only be included in the body of the text, but also in the meta data, Alt Text, and header tags. Try and feature them prominently in your title and if possible at the start of your text but always give your content a good proof to ensure it reads well.
Sharing is caring
Last but not least, don’t forget to share your content on social media! Once you’ve crafted a piece of exceptional content you will want to let everyone know.
If you’d like some help with your content strategy for 2017 give one of the Tamar elves a call on 020 8995 7878 or email firstname.lastname@example.org?