How to create content!


How to create content!Creating content for your website can be a difficult thing to start, but gets easier with practice!


If you are writing on topics you know well, (i.e. Your business products and services), you should be able to create content that is both interesting for your customers and useful for Google in ranking your website pages. Its a balancing act to provide useful short punchy information, in a format easy to read online.


Sometimes starting can be the hardest part.
So how do we begin to create content from a blank page?


This is my simple approach!


A) Absolutely first of all, have in mind your key 3-4 search phrases that you want to use to optimise your overall site. If you have these in mind or written down, they will naturally appear in your content and this is what Google wants to see.


1 Plan the content you are going to make. I find it difficult to pull content from thin air. But if I plan what I’m going to say on 4-5 pages, I know what I need to generate.


2 Ask yourself a question. Let’s say you have planned pages called About Us and Services. Start by asking yourself a question as if a client has rung you on the phone. Questions such as ‘how do you guys operate and what territory do your team cover?’, ‘What services do you provide and what size businesses do you generally work with?’.


3 Once you have asked these normal everyday questions, simply answer them! You could answer these naturally if someone were to phone you, so write that answer down. Turn the questions into sub headings – ‘Territory we cover’. Writing in your own personal manner can be really appropriate for content on websites for small and medium size businesses. This depends on a little on your industry. Mostly we don’t all have to write content trying to sound like some high flying marketing corporation.


At the end of the day, it’s about good, useful information for your clients.


Here are some additional tips to keep in mind while creating content.
* Write for the customer personally
* Keep paragraphs short, 3-4 lines
* Use Sub Headings
* Write short sentences
* Keep your keywords and search phrases in mind
* Add little bits of content regularly over time and Google will love you!



Paste With Care – 3 simple rules


Paste With Care - 3 simple rulesThink back to when we did training. The second most important thing you will have been told is – paste as plain text.


We all know online editors have some quirks. But the most significant is to do with pasting content.


The issues lay with what you can’t see. When you select and copy content from another source like a website or Microsoft Word, other hidden information comes with it.


In particular if you select and copy from MS Word, you also get lots and lots of hidden Microsoft tags and code. You can’t see it, but it will break your page and make your content look terrible, or impossible to format and edit.


Not to worry though! You can still copy content from elsewhere. The key is to use the following process.


1 Copy content from source
2 In your website admin put the cursor where you want the content.
3 DO NOT right click paste, or hit ctrl V! Instead press the paste as plain text button on the editor toolbar.
4 You may want to go and delete the lines between paragraphs, and replace them by hitting Enter. This makes them proper paragraphs so you can format headings.


It isn’t really complicated, but definitely is a discipline when you are used to using quick shortcuts for pasting.
NOTE you CAN copy and paste content within your own site. Either within the editor, or from your live site.


To see the process in detail watch the following Surefire Help Videos-

Part 1: Paste as plain text from another source
Part 2: Preparing pasted content for formatting
Part 3: Formatting text content



What does Google look at?


What does Google look at?This is not intended as a comprehensive guide to SEO (search engine optimisation).  This is a very specific list of things YOU can do on your website through the content management system.


These are things Google definitely looks at, don’t say we didn’t tell you!


* Domain name - For your existing site this is probably set and gaining history and trust with Google already. But if you are considering a new site it might be worth considering a generic keyword loaded domain name e.g.


* Filename - when you create a new page, you have the oppportunity of editing the filename. This filename is part of the URL address (location on the internet) when you browse to that live page. 3-5 nice keywords can help Google understand the page. E.g. ‘book-swim-with-dolphins-christchurch’. Watch our video on creating a new page and writing the filename.


* Headings, Sub headings, Bold - Google actually sees Headings and Sub-Headings are slightly more interesting. So make use of that format drop down list tool on the editor toolbar. Making important text bold can also help. Don’t overdo it and remember your readers. Watch our video on formatting text.


* Content - Content is King and always will be. You can’t beat good topic related content, both for Google and your readers. Over time Google is going to read your content and literally record what words and phrases are in it, and where they are located. This is where the search results come from.


* Links Out - links on your website to other pages, both in your website and off to other peoples websites, are of interest to Google. Remember in training we talked about making the text ‘Click here’ the link is a bit pointless? Use good keywords and phrases for the actual link people click on. e.g. ‘Click here for more information on swimming with the dolphins‘. Watch our video on creating links.


* Image Alt Text - You can tell Google what your images are. Helps with Google Images searches. Watch our video on writing image Alt tags.


* Meta Title - watch our video on Meta Titles. This is the most important thing (after content) you can do on your site.


* Meta Description - watch our video on how to create effective Meta Descriptions and their use.


* Activity - Google wants to see new and current information. This is because Google wants to provide the most up to date and relevant content to it’s clients making searches online. So add content regularly. It doesn’t have to be much. And check through your stats how often Google and the other search engines are coming back to crawl through your site.