Tips for Better SEO Pt 6 : Content is King

Reasons and ideas around creative content
Why is quality content important
Quality content builds word of mouth, which brings visitors, which builds brand and reputation. An example of social networking and word of mouth recently was demonstrated by the Spanish fashion icon retailer Zara. The first Australian store opened in Sydney last month with crowd levels as great as the Apple Ipad 2 launch with minimal advertising and no previous Australian presence. The retailer relied on blogs, fashion forums and other social media to get the message out there, and it worked, they even made the prime time news.

In the past, it was more difficult to build brand reputation and subsequently your business just by having quality content on your website, in your newsletters or advertising bumf. Unless you spent big money on traditional media advertising your potential clients couldn’t find you.

Referral marketing – why content is important
The best advertising has always been word of mouth, now it is available for free on a grand scale – Social Networking. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs and many others add up to a valuable source of referrals and because they come from known sources, your audience already has a built in trust factor with them.

To create this magnificent online word of mouth, and thus improve your brand visibility, you need to give something in the way of excellent quality content to your users. Every time you interact with your users, ask them to refer you (they won’t know you want them to unless you ask) – then their ‘friends’ will have a look at you and decide for themselves whether the referral was justified and relevant to them. The only way they can do that is if you have great content that has value for them to solve one of the problems in their lives… then they will refer you onto others ad infinitum – all for the cost of actually putting some quality content on your site.

Steps to quality content
Who are you talking to?
As in all marketing devices, know your target audience and tailor your communications to them. Identify your target groups by asking existing customers how they came to discover their need and then find you. Maybe invest in some general market research.

How should you talk to your audience?
Work out the words that your audience are using to find you on the WWW. You can do this through the Google AdWords Keyword Tool. You put in a phrase that you believe is most closely associated with your services and a list of keywords related to that search is delivered.

Don’t take for granted that you know all the ways your customers may search for you. By thinking laterally and broadly, many customers may come from an entirely different direction. For instance, a crafty person who is time poor may search generally for embroidery patterns in the hope of finding some new, simple, fast patterns. The owner of a website which sells ‘punch embroidery products’ which happens to be a faster embroidery technique would do well to have keywords for general embroidery and ‘quick crafts’ etc, rather than just ‘punch’ as the user may have never heard of the term ‘punch embroidery’.

One of the best ways to circumvent our inability to grasp all the possible permutations of how users seek us is to use the Google Webmaster Tool of ‘Top Search Queries’. This shows you the actual keywords that your visitors searched on to come to your site. Often it is surprising the choice or words used.

What will you say?
If you are passionate about your business, you will probably find that you or your team have certain expertise that no one else has access to. Writing well researched, unique articles makes for brilliant reading and improves the usability and attractiveness of your site to both your users and correspondingly to Google.

Consider leveraging your clients to write for you, give you great reviews about your products and services, how they have been used or how they have impacted on the lives of your clients. Be innovative in how you view your offerings – a great website for a lemon juice manufacturer includes all types of cleaning advice that uses the juice, not just culinary uses.

No matter how clever, beautiful or advertised your website is, nothing is more important than your content. When you have good, useful, clear content, the wording that this involves will be always relevant to your page subject matter. It will also generally be the words and phrases that your target market is searching on and thus more will find your site, click on more pages and stay for longer. Using these principles, your site will increase its reputation with users, as well as gain in search engine visibility.

With exceptional content you look after your end users and that in itself will look after your website, your brand and ultimately, your business.

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