Tuesday, August 5, 2014

What is "Content Quality?"
The 12-Step Program

I recently attended a webinar on the subject, and, frankly, I did not learn a damn thing, and there were no earth-shattering revelations as far as what Google considers "content quality" to be.

Defining something as abstract as "content quality," at least in specific terms when it relates to website content, is just as difficult as defining what beauty is. As the old aphorism goes, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."

I believe, the same applies to "content quality" when it comes to website content.

If you ask SEOs about improving the quality of the content on your website, chances are they will have to perform and analysis of your site, which is fine, but ONLY if they are well versed in the subject matter. If you sell fishing gear, for example, the SEO has to be very familiar with the sport. Otherwise, chances are you'll be throwing your money away.

Like I've said before, SEO should not be approached as a one size fits all solution, and although optimizing a site is something that the webmaster or site owner should be able to do without much effort, if you do hire an SEO, make sure that he or she is an expert, not only in the SEO field, but most importantly, in yours.

And when I say "experts" I am not necessarily talking about people who have diplomas, college degrees, or anything like that. But if you are going to talk about skydiving, for example, an expert to me is someone who jumps out of planes (for business or pleasure), and knows what the heck he or she is talking about. Not some nimrod who "learned" the sport by reading blogs and watching YouTube videos.

So please don't try to fake it. I recently visited a website for car enthusiasts, and you could tell that the webmaster was nothing more than a wannabe who had no expertise on the subject. The poor bastard tried to sound like a gearhead, but to me—and I am sure the majority of his audience—he sounded like a dickhead, instead.

Here's a list of things you need to pay attention to, if you want to have a quality website. I know that they are the kind of stuff that makes you want to say "Duh!" but common sense is not that common, so consider this list a "refresher course."

12 Steps to Content Quality
  1. Your site needs to be an authority in its field.

  2. Your website's content has to be written by experts.

  3. Check grammar and spelling.

  4. If you provide outgoing links, make sure they are 100% relevant, and only link to other authoritative sites.

  5. Update your homepage frequently, with good and fresh content.

  6. Make your site's navigation user-friendly.

  7. Utility menus, such as those usually found in the footer of the page, have to be useful.

  8. DO NOT use the page footer as an area for spammy content. Actually, avoid spam. Period!

  9. Keep your copyright notice up to date.

  10. Provide Google+ and other voting links on your pages.

  11. Ask customers to leave and share shopping and product reviews.

  12. Make it easy for customers to contact you. Display your contact info on every page.