What Makes for Great Online Content?

by on January 17, 2014

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Chances are that at some point you’ve heard the phrase “content is king” when talking about web development. And this is certainly true; the most successful websites have great content.  But how exactly do we define great content? What characteristics do websites with great content share that make them so successful? We’ve put together a list of these characteristics below. Consider these characteristics as they relate to your own website. How do you think your company is doing with its content right now?

Here are 8 qualities of Great Online Content:

 

1. Visually attractive and engaging.

Consider the success of social networking sites like Pinterest and Instagram and you’ll see that visual content can be vital for the success of a website.  People don’t want to browse websites that are boring. By creating graphics that resonate with your potential prospects, you have a much greater chance of keeping them engaged with your brand. Make use of photos, infographics and more whenever it makes sense for your web operations.

2. Likely to be shared.

In this age of social media networks, “likes” and “shares,” you need to ask yourself how likely any content that you create is likely to be shared. Every blog post that you publish, every Tweet or Facebook post that you send, etc. should all be created with the goal that your readers will want to share it with their friends. You should also have “share” buttons on your blogs and other online content, so that anyone interested can easily share your content.

3. Useful.

If you don’t have anything useful to say, what’s the point of saying it? All of the online content that you create should have a purpose. The nature of that purpose is up to you. It could be informative, fun, instructional, emotional or any other number of adjectives. Just make sure that you’re not creating online content just for the sake of it; your audience can tell if you’re pushing out content that has no real value.

4. Relevant.

Your online content should be relevant both to the time you’re creating it and to the people you’re trying to reach. Whenever you can tie in current events, social media or internet trends and other similar items to your brand, be sure to take advantage of that opportunity.

5. Unique.

The content that you offer should be unique to your brand. Determine how you can set yourself apart from the competition and deliver your audience an online experience that they can’t find anywhere else.

6. Community-driven.

You want your online audience to feel as though they matter to you. Give them every chance to post comments on your blog posts or social media posts, or give you feedback through surveys, polls and questions. The more you can get your audience to interact with them through your online content, the more likely they are to keep coming back again and again.

7. Strong headlines.

Not only are strong headlines for your web pages and blog posts a great tool for drawing in readers, but they are also excellent search engine optimization tools. The right headline can drastically improve the way you rank in Google searches. Common successful types of headlines include “How To…” headlines or list headlines, like “The 10 Best …”

8. Brief.

Your online content should be brief and easy to read. People don’t spend as much time on one page these days, meaning you need to be able to compact your message into smaller chunks. However, remember that this doesn’t mean that shorter is always better, as you still need to focus on the quality of that message.

For more information about what makes great content, speak to our content development experts at Confluence. We look forward to helping you!

Related Posts:
5 Strategies for Outstanding Content Marketing
How to Develop a Content Marketing Strategy for Your Business
Content Marketing: 5 Tips for Creating Content Your Customers Want

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