As search engine optimization professionals, we have all heard the motto “Content is King”. Quality content is the top driver for SEO, helping push website rankings to the top of search engine results pages. Nowhere is quality content more important than in the realm of online reputation management, however. Building relevant, quality content can not only help suppress negative search engine results, but it can also showcase the qualities, achievements, and talents of your client. Building brand awareness through the development of impactful content is another benefit. Read on for tips on creating high-quality content for reputation management purposes.
What is Quality Content?
For website content, the concept of “quality” can be hard to quantify. In general, however, it has certain features that capture the attention of search engine spiders, helping to propel the content to the top of search listings. These features include:
Length – quality content is generally found in longer lengths, from lengthy white papers and profiles to long-format video clips and other forms. A piece that is 2000 words or more is not unusual, especially for reputation management campaigns.
Engagement – quality content engages the reader, encouraging him or her to stay on a given page longer. This maximizes click-through rate and page latency, improving rankings dramatically.
Writing quality – it goes without saying that quality content is characterized by insightful, impactful writing. A jumble of words may appear on its surface to be adequate for length considerations, but website visitors and search engines are not so easily fooled.
Value – when developing content for RM properties, the goal of SEO professionals should be to add value to the content. Does the content answer questions, provide insights, or illustrate specific topics with authority? If the answer is yes, you’re well on your way to presenting website visitors the quality they are looking for.
Ranking Metrics for Quality Content
Many studies have been conducted that demonstrate the value of incorporating quality content in an RM campaign. In the studies, content that had topical relevance outperformed less in-depth articles. Also, page length plays an important role in rankings. As discussed above, longer content pieces tend to rank higher than shorter ones, provided the content is relevant, informative, and engaging. In studies, the highest-performing content averaged nearly 2000 words.
While keywords are important in the overall RM/SEO picture, it is how those keywords are used that determine quality rankings by popular search engines like Google and Bing. Even if specific targeted keywords aren’t used in a content piece, what the rest of the content presents to a site visitor can have serious positive impacts on its search engine rankings. So-called “rich content”, which uses keywords but also includes a variety of content formats such as video clips, downloadable articles, detailed information, and audio files outperforms text-only content. Take a personal business professional’s profile as an example. Creating content only about that client’s work history may or may not be sufficient to earn high rankings on search engine results. However, including video clips of the client at professional events, offering visitors downloadable white papers written by the client, or inserting audio files of the client speaking to an audience builds time-on-page and user engagement, propelling that content to the top of search results.
Building quality content can be difficult. It takes a talented writer to develop impactful content that adds value to the site visitor experience. It also takes a solid understanding of SEO principles to maximize returns on effort. By creating quality content for your Reputation Management clients, you can help build brand awareness, showcase your client in a positive light, and push down any negative search results that may exist. The effort to add quality to website content is worth it, and your clients will thank you for the great results.