Adding fresh content to on a regular basis to your website is important for a number of reasons. Blogs, articles and other updates work to help keep your SEO healthy – allowing your site to rank better with the search engines and thereby attract a greater amount of traffic.
But how important is it that those articles actually be good? Well-written? Informative? Original? Is simply churning out a high volume of articles enough or does quality still matter?
I was recently confronted with this question meeting with a prospect who was interested in having me do some content work for him. The prospect represented a marketing agency who was looking to outsource some of their work to me.
He said, “My clients don’t care about quality. We can take existing articles and spin them for two dollars a piece.”
I politely wrapped up the meeting know that this prospect and I would not be able to reach an agreement. But I should actually thank this prospect because he really got me thinking about what differentiates quality writers from spinners and content mills.
The quantity argument
Let’s start with the argument for quantity and why some companies choose it over quality for their websites.
As I’ve mentioned before – regular content – sometimes even poor content can give you a boost in your Google or Bing ranking. The natural result of this will be more traffic to your website.
Spinning articles (that is taking someone else’s work and changing the wording just enough so that it does not appear to be plagiarized) is one way to produce a lot of content in a short amount of time. It’s easy – and it can be relatively cheap. There are even software programs that can do it for you – albeit rather poorly.
But hey, if you can get lots and lots of articles for your site and do it quickly and cheaply, why not right?
It’s a tactic that might just work – for some businesses.
So why would a company choose to spend more and hire a content writer who produces high quality and engaging content?
Here are six reasons why I would argue that quality is not dead:
- Quality content shows your reader that your company is an authority. When people do Google searches, they are looking for answers. If your site contains a blog that is truly able to answer their question and not just repeat what has been said on every other site, that can make you their go-to expert next time they have another question about your industry.
- Engaging content helps you build an audience. There are so many company blogs out there that merely rehash what’s already been said hundreds and thousands of times. Engaging content stands out. If your business has a blog that makes people think; or that entertains them; or that challenges them on some level, they’ll be more likely to return to your site or start following your business on social medial.
- Quality content writers will learn to speak your company’s language. It is more important than ever before for businesses to distinguish themselves through brand image. Do you want to portray an all-business get er done kind of image? How about a quirky fun image? Or perhaps an image that appeals to a certain gender or age group? A skilled content writer can work those goals into the “voice” of your articles.
- Quality attracts your niche customer. While putting out hordes of low quality content, may boost SEO and bring more traffic to your website, it may not be attracting the right audience. What’s the point in attracting visitors to your site who never do business with you? The best articles are the ones that attract, engage and eventually convert your target customer.
- Google’s algorithms are continually evolving. Many spammy tactics that were used only a few years ago to draw traffic to websites have now been dubbed “black hat” by Google. Using these same tactics today can get your site penalized or even banned by search engines. Google’s spiders already have algorithms to detect quality – and they are getting better all the time. Sheer volume of poorly written content will not give companies an SEO advantage for much longer. Businesses that choose quality now are ahead of the game.
- Readers are demanding better content. Let’s face it – the internet has become polluted. Anyone and everyone can post whatever they want and there is a lot of crap out there. There is also a lot of really good content. And your readers know the difference. Companies that wish to keep their readership have to recognize that the modern business website is about giving just as much as it’s about getting. Sure, they want to “get” traffic and conversions – but they are also expected to “give” value to those that visit their site.