As web content writers, we know the Internet is saturated with mountains of content. Due to the sheer number of words it can be difficult to separate your prose from others. Luckily, you don’t have to be a genius wordsmith to connect with others online. You just need to solve a problem without creating obstacles to information.
With this in mind, here are 15 tips and tricks content writers need to know:
1. Ideas are Gold
Never waste an idea! Even if you immediately write-off a thought as silly, jot it down. You will never know what could have come of an idea you quickly dismissed. A trick of the best content writers is to keep a pen and paper on you at all times.
2. Keyword Research is Key
SEO this, organic traffic that. We get it! You’re sick and tired of anything keyword related, but the easiest way to supercharge your earnings is by becoming an SEO expert. If you fail to properly research your keywords, you’re setting yourself up for failure. The first step in turning an idea into an incredible article is getting things right with Google. If you’re not doing keyword research right now, you can start by using:
3. Learn the Pain Points
Figure out what your audience needs. Then give it to them. No fluff, no filler. Your audience is your friend. Don’t distribute content. Drop knowledge. Provide advice. Actively work to help your audience solve a problem. If you can do so, you’ve added value, which is the name of the game. Your blog writing will barely survive if you cannot offer wonderful tidbits of information in a cutting edge manner.
4. Gather Resources
As a content writer, you’ll be asked to write on every topic under the sun. From sexual harassment law to metal roofing to waxing for men – you name it! Is it always exhilarating? No way! Does a bloodbath of babble ensue after a few blogs? Hope not! Simply use this trick to up your game: Don’t fret about what you don’t know. That’s what search engines are for. You can research every single thing you’ve ever wanted to know. For example, below are helpful resources gathered for this piece. They may also be of some assistance to fellow content writers:
5. Attention-Grabbing Headlines
Just like content writers can’t skimp on keyword research, a headline is essential to crafting quality content. You want to grab your reader’s attention by coming up with a catchy title. While you may think this is difficult, it’s not. Here are a few quick tricks to crafting better headlines:
- Use numbers
- Words like tips and tricks combined with numbers = even better
- “How to…” headlines work well
- People like to read “guides” that are considered “definitive” or “ultimate”
6. Self-Editing is Sloppy
When you’re a budding content writer, you’ll probably start out self-editing. The budget to pay an editor won’t be available, and your friends or family will get annoyed after the third time “helping” you with writing. So, you’ll need to make a few adjustments. First, never edit immediately after writing. Let your article sit for an evening and edit it the next morning. Second, you can use some editing software to make self-editing a little more potable. It may be a budget buster, but in the long run, it could be worth it. Here is some recommended editing software:
7. Practice Hyperlinking Sources
Don’t be stingy with the links! Not only do outside links potentially improve your SEO, but your sources may return the favor. Plus, there’s this little issue of ethics within the industry. If you “used” someone’s content, the least you could do is throw a backlink bone their way. It’s astonishing how much content is crafted without giving credit where due. Writer advice: don’t steal without sourcing.
8. Understand the Market
Your market is looking for something. Every person that visits your site is looking for one particular product or piece of information. These people don’t waste time. They want information fast. If a quick glance at your content reveals you don’t have the goods, these visitors will retreat into the world wide web to find what they need. You want visitors staying on your site longer. So, you have to give every visitor the right message instantly. You must address exactly what your audience wants as soon as your page loads.
9. First Things First
The easiest way to give your audience what it wants is to put the best, most relevant information first. Now, no guide to content creation would be beneficial without stressing the importance of an introduction, but after that – jump into things. Use your introduction to explain exactly what you’re going to discuss. Then start to reveal exactly what your target audience wants next. No trap, nothing unexpected. Just the information you need to distill to the readers.
10. Don’t Overcomplicate
Crafting clever or creative content writing is vastly overrated. You want to keep things simple. A middle-schooler should be able to read your site and understand the exact points you’re trying to make. Visitors on the web are in a hurry. Most will leave your site the moment extra thought is needed to understand your main points. Simple statements should be your goal.
11. Easy On the Eyes
Your content should be inherently “skim-able.” By incorporating these styles into your content creation, your writing will be inviting to read. Allow visitors to skim and scan for the most important points. If they like them, they’ll stick around. To ensure your content is approachable, you can:
- Use bullet point checklists
- Number lists work, too
- Be upfront and direct
- Offer summaries
- Create sub-headings with meaning
- Limit every paragraph to one main point
12. Unexpected Arrivals
You never know which page on your website someone will arrive on. So each and every page and post on your site should solve a problem for your readers and display what your site is about. Once you have these basics covered, you’ll move on to adding a call to action on each one. Whether it’s an email sign-up or a link to your sales page, your navigation bar and sidebar widgets are not enough. Each page needs to ask your reader to do something.
13. Build Trust
While always asking, selling and closing is an important aspect of your website, you must focus on trust before your users buy from you.
- Be factual and always focus on accuracy
- Verify your information with hyperlinked sources
- Continually update your content
- Spell-check everything
- Give away some of your best information for free. Don’t ask for an email sign up. Don’t ask for a credit card number. Make the information FREE. By giving away some of your best stuff, you’ll build trust with your base and find loyal buyers down the road.
14. Offer Expertise
Producing the best content on the Internet is the one and only true way to improve your content writing. Better content will lead to better results. Google isn’t all algorithms and computers. Surprisingly, there is a small human element to first page rankings. Search engines do pay people to rank sites with proper keywords and traffic. These people look at sites side by side and grade the content, along with design and other metrics. If your content is the best in your industry or niche, the search engines will eventually find you. So offer your expertise and watch the organic traffic roll in.
15. “You” is Important
Don’t refer to people as anything other than “you” on the Internet. People are the most important aspect of content writing. Connect with your reader on a personal level by using the word “you”. They were looking for information and you should provide just that. And don’t forget, your audience wants to engage with you, too. Third-person doesn’t build relationships or engage with your reader. Second-person (and first) do!
Content Writing Tips You Need to Know
As you may have noticed, there is a lot of work that goes into crafting killer content for your website. You may have been struggling with getting a single word on a page. Or maybe you’re looking to improve your SEO or conversions. Whatever your specific content or blog writing issue, the tips above will help solve them.
If crafting content is taking up too much of your valuable time, we can help. Instead of spending your time writing, you could get back to doing what you do best – running your business! Not to brag, but iWebContent can create some of the world’s best content for your company. If you would like us to take content writing off your plate, get in touch. If not, make sure you use the writing tricks above to supercharge your website!
Want to hear more about our proven formula to get more leads? Click here for a free download of our eBook, How Dogfooding Put Us on Page One. It’s an informative guide on how content marketing worked for us!