There are two different ways of thinking when it comes to marketing. One group says it's better to publish lots of content (quantity), while the other side argues that quality should come first in any scenario. Which is better, quality or quantity?
The answer to this question is not so black and white. Both methodologies have pros and cons, but it really depends on your resources. If you have the time, resources, and budget for both, it's best to publish in quantity and quality. But if you don't have these things, focus on quality first. While this article is not intended to end the debate, we're going to take a firm stand and focus on quality content.
Evolution of the Google Algorithm
There was a time when publishing shorter content quickly would get you more exposure on Google search. As this is no longer an option, you should focus on publishing higher-quality content (1000+ words) while recouping the same benefits.
If you look at the first page of Google search results (for any keyword), you'll find that the top 3 articles have an average of at least 2,000 words. The word count is one of many considerations for ranking. Still, it's also essential to understand what type of keyword you are targeting and who your target audience is.
Search engine algorithms have grown to the point where they can read and understand a web page's content. They can also see how visitors navigate a website and what they click on. This means that keywords are no longer as important as they once were, and you can’t use blackhat SEO tactics anymore without getting penalized by search engines.
SEO Growth with Keywords
Keywords can be a powerful tool for improving rankings and increasing online traffic. However, the more competitive the keyword, the longer and more keyword-laden your content needs to be. The word count is one of many considerations for ranking. Still, it's also important to understand what type of keyword you are targeting and who your target audience is.
Today, many brands focus on creating long articles with detailed information, known as 'skyscraper content.' This helps businesses grow in search engine rankings. What does this mean to you? Well, that said, if you want search engines to give you some ranking love, then you need to publish long articles!
To rank high on search engine results pages, you need to have a well-written article with a beefy keyword. Those who focus on publishing fluff pieces that are short and sweet will never rank as high as those who take the time to write longer, more detailed pieces. Make sure that your content is 1,000 words or more and informative and relevant to the topic.
Structuring your Blog
The article's structure is fundamental for writing your blog posts. You should be aware that not all long-form articles are high-quality. It's possible to string together a bunch of sentences and paragraphs to get 2,000 words. However, this doesn't mean you can go without planning or editing.
Google’s algorithm is constantly changing. The formula they use to rank a website can change at any time. However, one thing that remains constant is the amount of time a person spends on a site if they stay there long enough to scroll down the page. If people bounce far too quickly, Google detects this as poor content and will serve up less content from those sites in their search engine rankings
To create content that will rank highly in the search engines, you should always put your human audience first. This will help you rank higher in search engine results! You should make it a priority to please your reader and ensure they are getting the content they want from your website.
Here are a few tips to help you structure your blog post:
Have a clear introduction - Every blog post should have a clear opening paragraph that introduces the reader to what the post is about. Doing your research for keywords is particularly useful, as it will ensure that your key points are clearly outlined, and there is less of a chance of you including any redundant information. Your intro is the place to clarify why someone should keep reading. It’s valuable real estate in the first 100 words (title not included).
Use headings - The average attention span in 2017 was eight seconds. If you make your headings too long, readers might not read them. Subheadings are also suitable spaces to include keywords. Don't get too carried away, though! A few should be enough to get the reader interested. Anything more would just upset their reading process.
Keep paragraphs short - When writing blogs, it is vital to break sections into paragraphs. Longer paragraphs are not as easy to skim through as shorter ones are. And remember that because Google's indexing now prioritizes mobile versions of sites, it means that if your site looks terrible on mobile, you'll be at a disadvantage.
Write in plain English - Too much detail will keep your reader from understanding the point of your blog post. Break it up into one sentence for each point and keep it clear and concise. It can also mean breaking grammar rules. For example, use a period instead of a semicolon or colon. I know, I know, it's worrying. But the reader experience should always go beyond grammatical constraints.
How to put quality over quantity?
1. Don’t Rush the Brainstorming Process
There are endless topics to write about, but only a fraction of them are relevant to your brand. The content ideas you must come up with are:
(a) based on your own brand authority and
(b) interested in the audience you're trying to reach - otherwise, you'll just end up confusing your readers (and search engines).
Spend a reasonable amount of time brainstorming. New, original content is highly valued by audiences these days. Continuously releasing content, you have researched ahead of time will help you stay top-of-mind with your audience.
2. Check Out Your Competitors
Content should always be original, but that doesn’t mean that you can't get inspiration from others. At the brainstorming stage, consider looking at what your competitors are doing. This will show you more about the types of content created and shared.
Try to develop a few different approaches or angles that are better than what has been done before and are unique enough for readers to notice. Brainstorming should be diverse, not limited to just topics but also how you can approach them.
3. Establish Guidelines
Consistency is the key to quality. Every piece of content you create should be in tune with your brand voice and values and follow a predetermined set of grammar, flow, tone, SEO, and general style guidelines.
Create a content guide outlining these best practices. Outline the dos and don’ts of your content style and be as specific as possible, so you don’t keep re-creating new content for the sake of quality. Even a one-page document that breaks down the basics can be helpful when you're working with new contributors, including guest posters or outsourced content creators.
Blog posts are like essays in that they need clear structure and follow one train of thought. You can use your blog post to start a discussion. It’s best to focus on quantity while also making sure you publish consistently and regularly.
Your business has a message and ideas that need to be conveyed to your audience. Present the information you have in a clear, concise manner that delivers your message effectively. Measuring content effectiveness is also important to see what's working and what's not. You can ensure the right impact on your content by driving your strategy with quality rather than quantity.