Have you ever been pulled into a conversation with someone who just drones on and on with their story with no end in sight? You’ve given your customary “uh huhs” and “wow, that’s crazy”, but they just keep on talking. So, you zone out and put your mind on auto-pilot, politely standing there until a change in body posture or environment gives you the opportunity for escape.
It’s the same way with your web content.
Bland, wordy content that leaves no opportunity for the reader to relate will fall on deaf ears (or eyes). If you want a captivated audience, you need to create great web content thats relevant, beneficial, and engaging!
But, we know know that’s easier said than done. Below are some quick tips to help you create engaging website content for your target audience:
1. Make Your Content Relevant
Content is the information you provide to your audience, prospects and customers. This content can be in any form, including videos, infographics, blog posts, product pages, case studies, images etc.
If the information you’re providing to to your website visitor isn’t meaningful to them, or more importantly doesn’t address their need(s) or question(s), they will leave. You have only eight seconds to capture someone’s attention and interest or they’re gone, most likely to never return! Pretty harsh for sure, but that’s life on the internet!
Frankly, you’re lucky if you get eight seconds. Most statistics now quote that younger generations won’t even wait that long for a website to load or their query to be answered before they bounce off a website.
If you’re going to create great web content for your target audience, you need to have an in-depth knowledge of who you’re creating that content for.
Take some time to develop buyer personas for your small business and really nail down the exact type of people or businesses you want to consume your content. The more specifics you have about your audience, the better content you’ll be able to create!
2. Create Original Content
No one wants to read, watch, or listen to tired, regurgitated content. People have heard it all before, will get bored with it, and move on in search of something better.
You’re content needs to be fresh and new if you want searchers to notice it!
Here’s how you can do that:
Write your own content or find a subject matter expert to write it for you. Your readers will be able to tell if your content has been written with authority and background knowledge or not. If you don’t have a subject matter expert on staff you can use, consider hiring a freelance writer to help you. Many freelancers have specialty subject fields and the knowledge to create great web content for your small business website.
Check out freelancer hiring sites like Upwork, Textbroker, Guru and many others!
If you’re discussing a popular topic or creating evergreen content, try to provide a new spin on it. Original content means more than just creating your own content, it means also providing a fresh perspective, viewpoint, idea, or discussion that can add to the already existing information on the topic.
You’re goal should be to fill in any “holes” that exist in the conversation of your topic and help bridge the gap.
It’s fine to pull general information, statistics, or research from other sources (as long as you cite them), but just like a high school English paper, plagiarism will get you a failing grade. Google could see your work as duplicate content and penalize you with lower rankings and your audience won’t be impressed if your content looks weak or unbelievable.
3. Make Your Content Actionable and Useful
Apart from your content being interesting and unique, it also needs to solve a problem, answer a question, or provide easy step solutions your readers can take.
Your website content needs to be worth the time it takes to interact with it.
If your reader isn’t gaining anything from your content, why would they want to do business with you or continue to visit your site? They won’t. They’ll leave your site and find another business’ content that actually serves their needs.
While you’re creating your content (let’s say it’s a written piece of content like a blog post) ask yourself, “So what?” after you write a paragraph. Why does what you just wrote matter? What purpose does it serve? Is it just “fluff” writing to fill in some space on a page or does it actually provide real value to your audience?
If you can’t answer why your content is beneficial or helpful, you need to start over and create a more comprehensive article.
Great web content will directly answer your reader’s question or help them solve their problem. Look at the longtail keyword your content is optimized for and build a solid foundation around that.
What questions, problems, or next steps would be most associated with your keyword phrase? You can check out the Google “Searches Related To” section at the bottom of a SERP page to give you more ideas of related topics too!
For example, if you choose to optimize your content with the keyword of a specific product you sell, talk about the history of the product, talk about what it’s used for, how to operate it, how to fix it, the most common problems with that product, what problems the product specifically solves, why that specific product model is better than the previous year’s model, color and upgrade options, provide links or downloadable resources about the product…you get the idea.
You’re goal is to create website content that is so in-depth, it answers every possible question your reader could have about the topic.
4. Create an Interesting Headline
The headline says it all!
The headline is the first impression a searcher will have with your content, so it needs to stand out and grab their attention. Your headline needs to create curiosity, interest, or be emotional if you want someone to click on your result.
So, how do you create a great headline? Here’s a few tips:
1. Use numbers or statistics (we like facts, especially if they’re unexpected, and numerals will make your headline stand out in SERP results)
2. Include unique words (get creative with your word choice to interest your audience)
3. Don’t be afraid to use or incite emotion (ask a question, make a bold statement, or create an interesting association)
4. Make the headline personal (include “you” in your headline or direct it toward a specific group of people ex: “small business owners”)
If you want your target audience to consume your content, you need to create it with passion! Follow these four content creation tips above to ensure that your content gets seen AND interacted with.