Why Content Really Is King
When it comes to SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) you can do everything in terms of creating backlinks, making sure you’ve got all your ALT tags sorted and your keywords planned but if your content sucks, chances are your website isn’t going to be performing that well.
What is content?
What is good content?
Good content is high quality text or images. This content is relevant to your audience, it is interesting, valuable and unique. It engages users, makes them return to your website and ranks well in search engines.
What is thin content?
This content is content that adds very little or no value to your site. Examples of thin content are: Content that you’ve simply copied and pasted from another website, particularly low quality websites. Content that is jam packed full of affiliate links. Content that is automatically generated. Content that is full of key words but doesn’t really contain any factual information making it useless for the reader. Many people think that thin content refers to little text (example, a blog post under 1000 or 500 words) This isn’t the case. Obviously the more content you have, the better but always remember it has to be quality. The only thing I would say is that at a minimum always aim for around 300 words.
What happens if I continue to churn out thin content?
Chances are you’ll eventually be hit with a Google Panda penalty. Now while that may sound cute, it really isn’t. A Google Panda Penalty is essentially Google giving you a slap on the wrist as it doesn’t like thin content showing up in its SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) Now Google tend to hand Panda Penalties out to websites that have thin content however, they also hand them out to websites that have high bounce rates, low click through rates, a low percentage of returning visitors and for a low amount of time spent on the site. Although these may seem irrelevant to your content, if you improve your content, these issues will improve as you’ll be producing content that people want to read and engage with, plus they’ll come back to your site if they like it enough.
Other things which could land you a Panda penalty include poor design and navigation, 404 errors (page not found), not having a mobile friendly site (a huge proportion of the internet is accessed via mobile devices and that percentage will continue to grow, hence why Google introduced it as a ranking factor), slow page loading times and a whole host of other things. Improving your content won’t exactly improve these issues, but I highly recommend trying to solve them because they are all very important.
What happens when I’m hit with a Google Panda Penalty?
So, now you know what can cause a penalty, you’re probably wondering what happens when you are hit with a penalty. Well firstly, Google aren’t going to tell you. So how do you know if you’ve been hit? My advice would be to check your organic traffic in Google Analytics. Has it suddenly dropped? It could be a penalty. The way Google punish you is by lowering you in SERPs meaning you get less views and traffic which could in turn result in a decrease in earnings, depending on your type of site of course.
How to recover from a Panda Penalty and turn thin content into good quality content:
So, you’ve identified that you have a lot of thin content and that you’ve been hit with a penalty. You obviously want to improve this issue and have quality content instead. My advice? Go through your content and see how you can improve it. Is it useless for your readers? Totally irrelevant to your site or have you copied and pasted it from another website? Delete it! Do you have some content that is sort of good but not great? Why not add to your content and make it better? Also, be sure to get rid of any duplicate content and fix any website issues like design and navigation problems. The result? You should begin to see your traffic increase and resume back to the numbers you normally see.
The bottom line: Content really is king
Do you want your website to be successful, create a great user/reader experience and rank high in Google? Then always remember content really is king. If you produce content that is high quality that your readers find useful, interesting and engaging, your website is easy to navigate and you don’t take part in any Black Hat SEO techniques, then your website could be very successful.
Do you focus enough on your content?