So you know the cornerstone of good SEO is to have an authoritative presence online and provide plenty of valuable and interesting content. Now you’re wondering, ‘How do I make all this content? How much is it going to cost me? I want it done soon and quickly because I want to triple my web traffic this week!’
I’m sorry to tell you that isn’t how it works. There are no shortcuts. Well, there are no good shortcuts. There is an entire industry of ‘black hat’ SEO experts out there that use some shady tactics that just may get you a good ranking. Lets talk about why we don’t want to do that.
Black Hat: SEO’s Dark Side
There are a few problems with ‘Black Hat’ SEO strategies. ‘Black Hat’ is loosely defined, but in general it is knowingly trying to game the search engine algorithms with garbage content and spam. The problem is that it fills the web with garbage.
What kind of garbage? Well, comment spamming for one. You’ll often notice completely off topic comments or poorly worded general comments that contain a link to another site. Most of the time these are spam comments trying to insert links to their site. The theory behind this is that search engines will pick up this link as an honest link from one site to another and increase the linked sites ranking (One link likely won’t matter, but imagine thousands of spam links spread across thousands of blogs).
Black Hat also provides us with the multitude of awful ‘spun’ content. What is ‘spun’ content?
Spinning content involves writing an article, or better yet, copying an article from somewhere else and passing it through article spinning software. What this software does is help the user create very rough rewritten articles replacing words and phrases with synonyms and like phrases. Most of the time these new articles are near impossible to read without editing, and in general no one edits the end result. They are used to produce ton’s of unreadable content that appears to be unique.
These strategies also cost money for many companies trying to provide valuable free services to people. Just check out this post from one small startup about dealing with spam: http://the-pastry-box-project.net/chris-coyier/2013-october-10/
Employing anyone that uses these strategies is taking a gamble with your reputation and Google is constantly updating their search algorithms, so you may someday find your site has dropped off the map.
So how do I create all this awesome content?
The key is to use a slow burn tactic. Create consistency. Even if you just post something once a week you’ll begin building an archive of valuable content that will be indexed by Google.
It will take time, but the more often your write content, the better you will get at coming up with ideas and writing great unique content. If you don’t have the time to do this, make the time. If you really, really, can’t find the time because you’re too busy running the day-to-day operations of your business then hire someone to write for you. Even if just part-time, you need to be providing content on your site regularly in order to build up a large archive.
If you do hire a content writer, make sure they understand your product or service. Even better if they are a passionate user or customer.
Focus on quality. Make sure your content is worth having archived online. The more timeless information your site contains the better it will be perceived. It’s better to write one quality article a week, or bi-weekly, than one 20 word throw-away article daily.
I hope this has given you an idea of what to avoid and how to get started. We’ll talk more about coming up with content ideas in the future. The key is to just be consistent and start writing regularly on your company blog, newsletter, or whatever method you use to reach out to your customers.