Developing content that appears on Google does not have to be a rocket science.
“Writing better” is not advice that has served anyone, especially those businesses that try to create content that appears on Google.
Unfortunately, that is the kind of advice given by a lot of bloggers and digital marketers, making us ask if we are guilty and where we are wrong in our content that fails to connect, generate conversions or generate traffic.
So when the founder of Moz and “SEO guru”, Rand Fishkin declared that ” the unique content should die “, it disturbed many marketers.
“Should the unique content die?” We question many. “Surely this is clickbait !”
No. It was a practical tip for bloggers and content marketers, come straight from the mouth of one of the most influential SEOs in the world in digital matters, and a recipe for making content that appears on Google
Kill the unique content
The thesis of Rand’s ideology is quite direct and something that content marketers should consider.
This idea goes against the whole essence of marketing … is opposed to the thesis of Seth Godin’s Purple Cow that exalts uniqueness as a differentiator!
However, no one is arguing that we should not write original content. After all, duplicating content results is a slap in the face for Google, not to mention that it is a complete waste of time for ourselves and our readers.
The solution? Instead of focusing on the content being “unique”, Rand suggests that writers strive for what he refers to as ” 10x content .”
What is 10x Content and why should it matter to you?
10x sounds like another typical marketing term, but let’s analyze Rand’s direct quote, which aroused the interest of all content marketers:
“… Due to content saturation and overloading, the idea of standing out is difficult. But thinking “I want to be as good as the top 10 search results for this particular term or phrase is wrong.” We have to say, “How can I create something 10 times better than what any of these 10 results are currently doing? “ This is how we stand out. This is how you create content that appears on Google. “
It has all the logic! So, why did a seemingly obvious statement create so many waves in the world of web content?
Perhaps it was the simplicity of everything: that is, to point out that content marketers should really strive to create something valuable instead of remaking what is already out there, disguising it as unique.
That is the clearest way to create content that appears on Google.
Easy or difficult to make content that appears on Google …?
The concept of 10x content represents a challenge for content creators, who are forced to be creative and really improve their manufacturing of quality content.
In my experience I would say that this is an impossible mission for almost all the companies that we have advised, and why it is very simple: they see the creation of content as something difficult; they see doing it original, something titanic; but now to tell them that it must be 10 times better than the first results of Google is to give them a task that perhaps they can no longer fulfill.
If the future of blogs and content sites was only to create the style Hemingway or Stephen King, instead of considering SEO and other technical aspects, others would be the top ten places on Google … but the reality is that today you need a bright combination of creativity and technique.
The question is: how to make your content ten times better than what is already there? Does not that look like the useless advice of “write better?”
Specifically, Rand points out that to create content that appears on Google, it must be reliable, emotional and educational as a starting point. Do you remember the content matrix?
Regardless of your sector, there are principles that can bring you closer to creating that 10X content and thus appear on the first page of Google. Jeff Bullas gives some advice.
10 ways to create 10x content:
Yes, you can write better
Well, most likely, you can write better.
You do not need a master’s degree, nor all the knowledge in terms of style elements, but you can consider the following three-pronged approach to increase the possibilities of making content that appears in Google:
Step 1: Instead of writing to write, take the time to tell a story. It gives readers a reason to be interested, guiding them from point A to point B. Seth Godin does this consistently on his blog through short, personal anecdotes.
Step 2: Establish a distinctive writing voice, whether professional, humorous or sarcastic.Your writing does not have to be “serious or boring,” and there’s a good chance that your readers would rather listen to someone clever than to another boring business blogger.
Take a look at bloggers like Neil Patel and his way of capturing the attention of tens of thousands of readers daily through his authoritative and conversational voice.
The tone and the voice are best determined by your personal style and industry, and ultimately you will differentiate yourself from the conversations of the competition in your space.
Step 3: Have a unique perspective of whatever you are writing; you should not be afraid to let that perspective boost your content. Maybe you consider yourself a stranger in your industry or have a different background to your competition. Such an antecedent must be a pride badge that you use in each one of your posts.
Becoming a better writer does not require any kind of course or certification: you just have to pay attention to what makes a convincing piece of content, embrace your personality and understand what good writers do to create content that appears on Google.
Ask challenging questions (and break your own pattern)
The concept of “unique” content is not useless in itself: the problem with “only” is that it is incredibly vague.
It is necessary to consider covering topics that nobody has discussed or nobody is willing to discuss.
This may seem obvious; however, it is much easier said than done, especially when covering topics with a lot of competition.
You’ll have to do better research, trust primary sources, taking the time to tell a unique story will help establish you as a leader rather than a simple follower. That we are talking about 10x Content, a term of Rand Fishkin proves this. It’s something new and challenging that nobody had dared to talk about … but Fishkin did his homework well.
The case studies are incredibly popular and provide an opportunity to give a revealing insight to your readers.
Consider also using low-competence or long-tail keywords as a means to discover content ideas that have not yet been explored.
This is perhaps the easiest way to create content that appears on Google.
Do your homework
When Seth Godin spoke of the Purple Cow, nobody had used the term; probably many had plumbed the idea, but it was Godin who, looking for examples to illustrate his idea, managed to write a blog and a book that made him a celebrity. Today, everyone cites the Purple Cow.
What does this have to do with Internet marketing?
If you want to create something that has never been done before, you will have to do your homework. That does not mean looking at the list of blogs you follow and articles. It means original research, case studies and interviews!
See some of the most popular posts in your space: they are likely to be the result of much first-hand research and fieldwork.
What nobody has spoken about is a sure way to create content that appears on Google.
Do not be afraid of heavy or long content … statistically, it is the one with the most traffic, conversions and time, not to mention that it is the one that Google prefers for the first page.
Diversify your content … short or long?
Not all content must be created the same.
The benefits and drawbacks of the short form versus the long form content are obvious. While shorter posts are faster to design and require less effort, they also provide fewer opportunities to direct keywords or elaborate on deep and complex topics.
Good luck trying to explain complex topics in 500 words. On the other hand, although Google loves the content in a long way, always write massive messages, it can quickly exhaust writers and readers.
There is no need to adopt a single approach to create content. Lose the fear of diversifying your content and deviate from the typical blog to provide something new.
Traditional blogs can be “safe” and “easy”, but their reach and success may be limited. For example, visual content is 40 times more likely to be shared on social networks, indicating a strong need to diversify if you only write. How about inserting visual content from social networks to bring your texts to life?
There are many tools to create visuals fast and develop content that appears on Google.
As our reader becomes increasingly fickle in terms of his attention span, it is crucial that you do not become someone of a single trick and change the way that your readers see you.
Make your content 10x easier
Lately, there has been a great emphasis on “readability” and ways to make your content easier in the eyes of your audience.
For example, plugins like Yoast, which you install in your WordPress, have a series of recommendations to improve the readability of your articles and go a step further in the creation of content that appears in Google.
Honestly, there’s no single approach to making it easier to read the content, although there are steps you can take to improve the flow of your content and keep readers on the page:
- Keep the paragraphs short, usually no more than three sentences.
- Use bullets to divide your content and keep your readers’ attention on the page (hey, that’s what we’re doing right now)
- Give your content a list format to help direct readers’ attention and give your content, fluency.
In the Philadelphia film, there is a magnificent phrase to understand this. The lawyer always tells his clients: Explain it to me as if I were six years old.
Take advantage of the power of titles
Given the popularity and controversy over the clickbait titles where Buzzfeed has been a teacher, we understand their massive impact on our ability to grab readers’ attention at a glance.
Keep in mind that the headlines represent the first impression of your readers about your content. Ask yourself: are my headlines convincing? Do they make users feel irresistibly driven to click?
For example, instead of simply focusing on a “traditional” title, consider …
- Write the title of your publication as a question
- Submit your post as a list (they are incredibly popular)
- Use a controversial title as a means to awaken the interest of your audience
What would those headlines look like in action?
Let’s say you run a fitness site that sells customized training routines and you’re trying to increase your low-performing content. How could you apply the aforementioned principles to your content?
- “How to preserve muscle mass” vs. “Are you losing muscle? Guide to save your earnings “
- “Four exercises with weights to avoid” vs. “4 exercises that are probably destroying your joints”
- “How to save time in the gym” vs. “60 minutes of work is silly: stop wasting time and start winning”
Of the previous titles, which are more attractive at first sight?
The boom in content marketing in recent years has led to a fierce competition: ingenious headlines represent the best way to stand out from the crowd before you even click on your content.
Stop obsessing with the links
Content creators must strive to become resources for their readers.
The obsession to force internal links to other content on your site can kill the readability of your content and disrupt its flow.
Yes, you must link to sources and other sites, they must be relevant to readers. You should not fill in links hoping to cheat the search engines.
Call to action
If you are working to inform, entertain or persuade readers, each piece of content must have some kind of purpose. For example:
- Are you trying to gain more email subscribers?
- Do you want to get some kind of feedback from your readers, be it a tweet or a comment?
- Are you trying to convince readers to consider you a commercial option?
Calls to action are essential to ensure that you are giving your readers something to do while they are reading but remember: reading is an active process, and keeping readers engaged and on the page should be your priority.
The calls to action come in many shapes and sizes.
Whatever your call to action, give readers something to do:
Click on a link Leave a comment. Share Debate. Review. Something.
By ensuring that your calls to action are strong and clear, you are likely to make your content provoke, rather than write by typing.
Images are more than photos
Each article must include some type of images, both to maintain the attention of your readers and to optimize SEO.
Instead of choosing from the same stock of photos over and over again, make an extra effort to give your readers something they really like to watch. For example, you could:
- Take your own pictures, especially taking into account the fact that almost all smartphones these days have an HD camera
- Draw something to accompany your publications
- Create your own unique images based on screenshots and including your own captions
Since readers are 80% more likely to see a piece of content with images, you can not afford not to be creative with visual content.
Make your message matter
At the end of the day, the message of your content will differentiate you from the competition. If you really want your content to be extraordinary it is necessary to find an angle that speaks to your audience.
In short, be direct and do not repeat what everyone is saying. Instead of chasing your competition, well-crafted content will make your competition want to copy you.
The fact of having to make your content ten times better today can be discouraging; however, it is what will differentiate you from the rest and you will gain audience and leads. Content with authority, value and manufacturing, eventually reaches the top of Google pages.