Small Buisness Web Sites

Should we worry about thin content?

April 21st, 2015 ernie Posted in Content No Comments »

thin contentThe answer is absolutely worry about thin content if you want your web site to rank well in search results. Focus on whatever topic or market that you are aiming at. The search engines have traditionally labeled sites with thin content as not being worthy of having information that their clients are looking for. However this may be changing as they become more sophisticated at indexing web site pages for presentation in search results. Thin content is only one of the variables they look at and we will discuss this in more detail.

Thin Content – Does it Answer the Question

A page with thin content can in fact answer the question that the consumer is looking for. Take for example, “when does daylight savings time begin?”. Search for this string. You will find many pages that have content that is very limited and answers the clients question.

If the page is informative, useful, adds value and has the necessary quality for the topic being search for, then a thin content page could in fact rank very high in search results. As SEO web masters we need to make sure that the content we write addresses these issues for our customers. While at the same time ensuring a well ranked page so that the page has a chance of being click on when presented in the search results.

We still need to take typical search terms that customers will use. Create pages around these terms while delivering the results that the searcher is looking for. Thin content can be ok in some situations. In other situations for more complex subjects a longer piece of text needs to be used to fully explain the topic, deliver the answer the customer is looking for etc.

In summary, all content must be informative, useful, add value and has the necessary quality for the topic being search for. Maybe this is all I needed to say rather than going into detail to explain this topic. What do you think?

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What is thin content?

April 7th, 2015 ernie Posted in Content No Comments »

thin contentFor many years, thin content has been frowned upon by the search engines. If there was not much content, they figured that there was little value to the content for the reader and ranked a site accordingly. It appears that these views are changing as represented by this slide on the left. Content must be useful, it must be informative, add value to the reader and be accurate or of high quality. If a page could meet all of these criteria yet still considered to be thin content should it rank highly. We think so and would like to provide an example.

Thin Content – Example

Let’s assume you want to find out when day light savings time changes are to occur in North America. You search for |daylight savings 2017″ and are presented with over 13 million results. We picked the first one which gave us the dates, times etc in a very small page in terms of text. No need for 500 words, 1000 words etc or a lot of images. All you needed to know is what the date was for the next time change and it answered this question. The page met all of the criteria we mentioned and still had what would be considered thin content, yet was the first result on the search results pages.

This is an extreme example with one possible result and a very specific result. However the message is that the page of content does not have to have a lot of text. What it needs to do is answer the searchers question. They may not even stay on the page very long, but they got their answer.

Our web pages are between 300 and 500 words each and try to zero in on one topic to deliver or answer a question that our readers may have. Let us know if we are addressing these questions and if there are others we should tackle.

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Journalism Principles to Consider When Writing Content

December 21st, 2014 ernie Posted in Content No Comments »

Journalism Principles to Consider When Writing ContentWriting content for your web site is an increasing challenge.  Journalism Principles to Consider regardless of whether you are writing for Google Adsense or to attract customers to your companies web site to sell more product must be considered. Readers have a short attention span and if you do not capture their interest in the first paragraph or above the fold, then there is less chance of them staying on your site. They move on quickly so the first rule of thumb is to put the good stuff up front to keep their attention.

If you are a journalist or a writer for online content, make sure you always place the really good tidbits up front. So in keeping with this rule, the good stuff is always up front, use catch titles that will attract the reader in the first place and place enough content on the page so that your bounce rate is as long as possible. We will add more on these two topics in subsequent paragraphs.

Journalism Principles to Consider – Bounce Rate

Some people think that Google looks at bounce rate as a measure of interest by the reader. A short bounce rate means that either your content is not very good or it did not match what the reader was looking for. A bounce rate that is consistently short is usually going to mean that Google lowers you on the index results of searches or SERP’s and then no one is going to see your page. A longer bounce rate or higher one means that readers found your page interesting enough to stay long enough to read it and consider it. Bottom line in addition to placing the good stuff up front is to write consistently great content that readers will stay and read.

Journalism Principles to Consider – Titles

When Google, Bing or Yahoo presents search results they list the title and a brief summary below the title. Based on this limited information we all decide on whether the site is relevant enough to our area of interest. If it is we click on it and if not we move to the next result. Your title is the most important element at this point and plays a major part in helping the reader to decide if it is worth their time to click on the result or not. Make your titles interesting, clear and concise so that the reader can decide if this is something they should click on.

There are lots of other factors in Journalism Principles to Consider When Writing Content, however if you focus on writing good content in a manner that readers will read, then you are well on the way to attracting readers to your site.

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Write Original Researched Interesting Content

November 1st, 2014 ernie Posted in Content No Comments »

write-original-researched-interesting-contentGoogle and in fact all of the search engines have been improving their search algorithms to provide better results to their customers when they are searching for information online. Over the years various web sites have tried a variety of schemes to arrive at the top of the search results so that online readers will click on their links.

Google has launched a variety of programs, nick names Panda and Penguin along with earlier releases to improve these results so that bloggers and web masters cannot game the results. The upshot of all of this is that bloggers and website designers are now focusing on providing better quality content. This is a good trend for everyone since everyone benefits. Readers get better quality content, web owners get better results and web designers can focus on a quality web site rather than try to adjust web sites each time Google updates their algorithm.

Original Researched Interesting Content

The next time a web design company promises that they will place your web site on the first page of the search results for a given term, take the time to understand exactly what they are saying and promising. Writing original researched interesting content about your products and services is pretty easy to do, but will anyone find you when they are searching.

How will they ensure that your content appears in the top 10 search results? What happens when Google or Bing or Yahoo updates their search algorithm? Chances are they will skate around this issue and talk about needing to do more work to keep your site well up in the search results. This is code for spending more money.

We happen to think that you need to be adding new content all of the time that is fresh and interesting to your clients and readers. We also believe that you need to review your older content from time to time to make sure that it is still accurate and describes your products or services accurately. As you add more and more content there will be more and more information for your readers.

Google Objectives

This is what Google is aiming for, original researched interesting content that is current and up to date. This content remains that way regardless of what release of search software that Google throws at it. The next thing that web site owners realize is that they also need to have a multiple advertising strategy to help their customers find their web sites. Links on Facebook, links on business cards and invoices, traditional advertising, links on all emails that are sent to customers and suppliers. The point is to make sure that your web site is well advertised and provides the kind of information your customers are looking for.

For more information on this topic and others check out other posts on our website about building and maintaining web sites.

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Posting in-depth quality articles to rank with Google

January 1st, 2014 ernie Posted in Content No Comments »

Posting in-depth quality articlesMost SEO experts recognize that there can be as many as 200 different factors that Google takes into account when ranking a particular website and the content that they have on that website. These are not published by Google but is merely an estimate by those in the know associated with SEO activities. However there is one area that is an absolute must in order to have long term success with SEO. Posting in-depth quality articles is one of the best approaches to keep in mind.

Posting in-depth quality articles

However they all have come to the same conclusion and that it is quality content and in-depth articles that  are the premier content that Google and other search engines are looking for. All of the search engines want to be able to return quality results to their customers when they are searching for information about a variety of subjects.

If you are not providing quality content, that is well-written and providing information to your customers that would be interesting and useful to your customers then chances are Google and the other search engines will not rank you very well.

There is a difference of opinion on how long an article must be. Everyone agrees that the content must be high quality level, provide detail and deliver value to readers. If you can deliver that content in at 500 word article, this was considered approximately the right length of an article to post. Recently some SEO experts are suggesting that you should also have a number of 2000 word articles posted on your website providing great level of detail and content to your readers.

This SEO expert believes that you should be posting an article once a week of at least 500 words. Provide content covering a topic that would be interesting to your customers. It will rank well with the search engines. Once a month there should be a 2000 word article that should be included. It covers all the topics that you may have covered that past month. Some posts are only a few words in length because they also answer a specific question. They provide the reader with exactly what they are looking for. This is ok as well.

Posting in-depth quality articles – Content Strategy

Small business owner should also have a content strategy that allows them to post articles on a weekly basis. They can cover a number of topics as well as search engine terms that people typically search for.

Every article should also have a call to action. Or a reference to your main site if customers need more information and would like to contact you. In our case readers can click on services provided by our company for small business websites. They can receive more information by either contacting us by email or contacting us by phone.

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