A few weeks ago I posted about Google’s recent revelation that another algorithm update is in the works – this time targeting overly optimized websites (read it here – Google to Penalize Overdone SEO). I also stated that the key to beating the algorithm change is to make sure your website is chock full of quality and relevant content.
This week I want to discuss how you can improve the quality and ranking of your website, attract more visitors, and convert more leads by placing killer web content on your site. I have to admit that the term “killer web content” isn’t mine. The phrase was coined by one of my favorite authors and web content expert Gerry McGovern. McGovern has written several books (all full of pertinent information for website owners and marketers) but my personal favorite Killer Web Content. It’s practically the bible around the CookWheelwright offices. I’ve given a copy to every member of our team, and recommended it to practically everyone I’ve worked with. The bottom line is McGovern gets it and puts crafting user friendly and high quality websites into real world and practical techniques. If you’re reading this blog, I highly recommend you read the book (after you’re done with this post of course!).
At the heart of creating killer content is focusing on the Six Cs.
- Who Cares?
- Is it Compelling?
- Is it Clear?
- Is it Complete?
- Is it Concise?
- Is it Correct?
By asking yourself these questions and honestly evaluating your web content in these terms – you too can deliver engaging and effective web content that dominates the search engines and converts more leads.
In my opinion, perhaps the most important of the six Cs is the first, Who Cares?
The web is full of useless junk, some of it we love (who hasn’t watched the Crazy Honey Badger over and over?), some of it we never want to see. I’m not going to attempt to evaluate the recreational interests or their value to the web. But when it comes to commercial content the internet is full of thin content that offers no real value to the user. Think about it, how many times have you gone to a website looking for an answer and instead got a heaping spoonful of hyperbole? It’s happened to me more than once. The backbone of the internet is built on delivering information on demand, and the goal of major search engines like Google is bring users their desired information faster and better. This search engine desire brings a built in advantage for websites that actually pay attention to the message on their page. Notice.
Nothing ruins a website like a spoonful of hyperbole.
Getting noticed can come in many forms, but the majority of the techniques search marketers employ experience short lived success. The reason SEO fails so often – no one cares. No one cares if your site is the most crawlable site on the net. No one cares if you’ve micro targeted keywords down to the most precise level.
No one cares if you’ve bought a billion backlinks pointed to your homepage (a capital offense in Google’s eyes by the way). These activities might all contribute to getting your page listed at the top of the search results, but they won’t help to keep you there. Unless your website contains the information your visitors want and need, you’re constantly swimming upstream.
Instead of focusing on keywords, try focusing on what McGovern calls “carewords”, the words that really matter to your audience. These are the words that make us click, drive action, and produce results.
If your website isn’t optimized for your customers’ needs, it won’t matter how well it’s optimized for your search engine’s. If you’re looking to create killer web content start by focusing on your customers hot buttons and work backwards from there. As always, your website’s top priority should be to deliver high quality and relevant information to your real life customers first and foremost. Capture their carewords and you’ll create a website that naturally builds it way to the top of the search rankings.
While carewords might seem intrinsic, they can be captured and managed by savvy web marketers. The answer is in how we search online. Internet users are hunters. They constantly search and scan for the information they need to complete their task or meet their objective. Google searches rarely end up the same way they start out. Typically speaking – if we enter a search engine query and don’t get the results we wanted we’re going to click the back button and revise our search. By following the trail we can not only determine what’s important to our customers but we can adequately predict their next move. It’s in that ability to understand and respond to what our customers really care about that we can separate ourselves from our competition. By focusing on creatinggreat web content, we can build great websites that command attention and deliver firm results.