THE INTERNET IS A LARGE WORLDWIDE WEB. It’s all too easy to become lost in the crowd with roughly 2 billion live websites on the internet and an estimated 5 billion internet users, about 4 billion of whom are on social media.
However, there are techniques to boost search exposure by creating content that is friendly to both search engines and people. To get the most out of content-based marketing, here are three techniques to increase your signal.
Writing Titles and Headings with Search in Mind: Content vs. Copy
Copywriting is traditionally associated with printed materials, whereas content writing is associated with web publication. While there is some overlap—good writing is excellent writing—the key difference is that copy writing isn’t always web-optimized, whereas content creation incorporates SEO best practices on purpose. To put it another way, content writing is search engine friendly.
Here’s an example of a headline for the same information regarding plywood manufacturing, copy versus substance, to demonstrate the difference:
- The Original Panel Product’s ABCs and 123s
- How is Plywood Made? Plies, Adhesives, and Orientation
The first is a witty title that hints to the topic without actually saying it. It’s fine for copywriting, but if the content is for the web, it’s the wrong technique. As simple as it may appear, it will be lost in the web search shuffle, along with your content, because it is too abstract.
The second one is considerably easier to find. It’s written in the style of a query that people may type into a search engine, and it includes keywords that are relevant to the topic. Write headings and titles that are as close to search terms or queries as feasible.
DO: Use keywords or ask basic questions to go directly to the point of what your article is about.
DON’T: Use abstract titles that just allude to the subject.
Titles, subtitles, and headings can help you improve your SEO. Crawlers from search engines are continually indexing websites, and they take notice of what’s in headers (HTML’s h> tags). You’re missing out on a fantastic opportunity to win at the web search game if you don’t use headings or employ headings that don’t use keywords.
It’s Good for Business to Have Accessible Content
Accessibility is sometimes underestimated, yet this is a huge mistake. Not only does inaccessible information frustrate potential buyers, but it’s also bad for SEO to leave accessibility features out.
Accessibility features are used by a significant section of the population to view web material, and this segment is typically strongly represented among customers. What is the size of the portion? According to the National Institute on Deafness and Hearing Disorders, 15% of Americans aged 18 and above have hearing problems. According to the National Institute of Health, 6% of people in the United States have eyesight problems. According to the National Eye Institute, about 8% of men and 1% of women suffer some kind of colorblindness.
These figures do not include people who have temporary hearing or visual loss, therefore even though there is some overlap, combining those groups yields a figure of around 20% of the population who requires accessible content. These figures are expected to rise over time as the population ages.
Make your message simple to comprehend for your customers. Provide transcripts and subtitles for audio-heavy content such as podcasts and videos, as needed. Make sure there are no issues with low-contrast colors that persons with vision impairment will have trouble seeing; the same goes for color combinations that colorblind people will have trouble reading or recognizing. The greatest color scheme is one with a lot of contrast, but avoid inverted text (bright writing on a dark backdrop) because it’s notoriously difficult to read.
DO: Prioritize content accessibility.
DON’T: Skimp on accessibility measures and miss out on a significant customer group.
Every digital image, site, email, or social post should have alternate text, sometimes known as “alt text” or the “alt” attribute. If there isn’t an option to add alt text, create a caption that explains what’s going on. The alt text clearly and concisely describes what the image depicts, preventing annoyance for those who can’t see it—and that includes those with visual impairments, as well as people whose email client suppresses images, or anyone else who may experience image suppression due to technological reasons. And, as previously stated, alt text is critical for SEO. Web search crawlers index alt text for site search, just as titles and headings.
Because alt text is so important in web search, it’s worth spending the time to write it. Use keywords to clearly describe the image’s relevance and what it depicts.
Repeatedly test and incorporate feedback
Personal idiosyncrasies and content habits are all too easy to overlook by people who have them, regardless of how amazing the writing, graphic, or image is. The best content has the broadest appeal, and a committee is one of the best methods to broaden appeal.
Request that others review the content—as many people as possible—and then thoughtfully incorporate adjustments based on their suggestions. You don’t have to accept every idea, but you should carefully weigh the benefits and drawbacks of proposed changes and thoughtfully address any issues that have been voiced.
DO: Test, test, and then test some more. Implement feedback thoughtfully to create changes.
DON’T: Ignore the review process because the content appeared to be fine the previous time.
Put digital content to the test. There’s no need to assume whether your material complies with accessibility guidelines. There are a plethora of free tools available for comprehensive testing. For visuals, the WCAG’s Contrast Checker at contrastchecker.com looks for difficulties with visibility, such as colorblindness, that could make the graphic unrecognizable. The Accessibility Insights tool from Microsoft, which can be found at accessibilityinsights.io, is a browser extension that tests for compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). These are free, as are many more graphics and website utilities that can be found by doing a fast web search.
HTML email testing, on the other hand, is not only cost-effective but also highly recommended. Users receive email through a variety of email applications (Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo! mail, and so on), each of which presents emails differently. What works in Gmail might not work in Outlook, and vice versa. Litmus PutsMail, Email on Acid, and MailTrap are three good subscription-based email test services. These services test emails with a wide range of clients and assist in identifying modifications so that marketing emails look their best.
Always include alt text for images and graphics in emails; approximately 60% of email clients suppress images. As a result, sending an email with simply one large image is not suggested. It’s possible that the entire thing may be repressed, and the message will be lost. The traditional recommended text-to-image ratio is 80 percent text and 20% graphics.