I have seen a lot of content over the years – whether that’s from clients I’ve done work for (or clients I’ve knocked back). And it isn’t hard to see what qualifies as bad content.
However, often even the most clued up business owner may see content as a tick box exercise – almost like a chore that just needs to be pushed through quickly and finished asap – but still expecting that somehow they’ll get more traffic and sales through the website.
The Dangers Of Bad Content
And just remember, if the content is too thin, you’re at extremely high risk of being hit by a Google penalty, no matter how much you’ve manipulated your rankings .
(Avoid this by making good content!)
And for the love of Google, please do not copy paste content from other sites and pass it off as your own – lest you be hit with a duplicate content penalty.
Here’s how its done
You’ll need to brainstorm content ideas which would appeal to potential buyers of your product/service.
Think about the kinds of questions they may have, their pain points or just stuff which would interest them.
And once you’ve built a hub of great content (whether its articles, video format or whatever) you can reach out to sites and blogs that would be interested in that content, prod them to link to your content – and that should drive some super relevant traffic to your site.
But lets focus on the foundation of this strategy – which is creating great content which will hit the right mark.
Here are a few methods you can use to help you come up with ideas.
- Buzzsumo/Ahrefs content explorer
Look for the most shared content for keyword phrases in your niche or industry and create a better version of it or something that takes a unique angle.
e.g. for “link building techniques”
Obvious one, but this can be a mega-useful one (and probably the best one). Generally, the highest ranking content (especially for long tail keywords) tends to be the best versions of that particular subject on the net. But that doesn’t mean you can’t create something better. If so, you’ll be onto a winner.
Google’s autocomplete function can be good for suggestions related to your main “marketing defining keywords” (MDKW). E.g. patio installation
Searching a popular website for content discussing a particular subject
Site:website.com “keyword phrase”
Or even searching for ebooks/whitepapers for a particular keyword
There’s so many more operators like this which are very powerful and can narrow down results from keywords like this. Just experiment.
- Competitors/industry influencers
Can be good to look at what successful competitors are producing. However, be careful with this – as you’re assuming that a competitor actually has some decent content. If nobody does though, it may actually be a good thing!
Alternatively, if you rely on national or local business – can be good to look at successful and high ranking websites in the major cities of other countries. Although of course, it may be that certain content that works in one country, may just not apply to your own.
Can be good to determine the kinds of long tail keywords you should target. Can give you ideas for content as well, but does sometimes throw out a bunch of ideas which don’t make any sense.
Great one for finding the types of questions are asking in your industry or for the particular subject you’re looking to create content on.
Can even drive a bit of direct traffic as well.
Look at the amount I drove in a couple of months by occasionally posting in my spare time.
Use Your Eyes!
No matter the method you’re using, always keep this mind – is the content good? If you were a customer, would you take the time to read it?
If you can nail these aspects, you can create something which offers true value to the audience and industry.
And then, once you start doing email outreach and asking for people to link to it – it makes the process a whole lot easier!
People will thank you for sharing something so useful and you’ll find the links should start to roll in like clockwork.
And if you continue to write valuable content like that, there shouldn’t be any reason why you can’t keep scaling up and building traffic to your site.
it can set you up as the authority in the field and perhaps even make your website the go-to hub on all advice for that particular industry.
Every now and again, you may even have something go viral in your industry and the social shares will only add to the traffic!
Don’t Overthink this Bit
You really don’t need to overcomplicate this…
Make valuable, comprehensive or unique content. Keep it non-salesy, relevant to your audience and above all else, don’t make it too advertorial! Doing that alone will set it apart from about 80% of other websites out there.
Not every content will be a hit – and some pieces may just not engage with the audience for whatever reason. Or you may create piece of content which you think is really great.. but nobody wants to link to it..
Don’t be discouraged though – this is a normal part of the process for any company. But with enough patience, testing and time, you’ll start to get a handle on exactly what does work for your audience and has the best chance of gaining links.
I’ll leave you with this thought – “The links you get will only be as good as your website.”