Web content is an art. With trillions of pieces of content online, it’s easy to separate the good from the bad from the ugly. When you read something, you just know. But what really makes up good content, and what’s the difference between good content and the best? Here are six traits that the best content on the web always has.
Easy to Scan
Hardly anyone wants to sit down and read a long, lengthy article online (at least not all the time). The majority of the reading we do on the web isn’t really reading, but scanning. People want to look at a blog post or article and be able to immediately find the main points. They can then decide if they want to invest time in reading the rest of the details. If content isn’t easy to scan, it’s going to get skipped over for something that is.
Readers should feel personally connected to the content they’re reading. They want to feel like the piece is speaking directly to them, and that it’s written specifically for them. It should touch on their personal interests and emotions. It should provide a human connection. Dry, regurgitated facts aren’t personal or interesting. The best content makes each reader feel personally involved.
Just about every piece of web content has links within it that send readers to other relevant information where they can learn more about something that was mentioned within the piece. Adding links to a piece of web content is like an art form. The best content links to other good content, and it only links to the most interesting or relevant stuff (not just anything and everything). Links are also seamless integrated to be easy to find but not distracting.
Easy to Find
Search engine optimization is important not only for every website, but for every piece of content on that website. The best web content isn’t artificial with its SEO, but it does make an effort to be easy to find. It targets a specific audience and tries (and succeeds), through keywords, links, metadata, and more, to be as visible as possible to the people who want to see it the most.
The “call to action” is so important on everything from blog posts to Facebook posts, and the best web content does it very effectively. Content should let people know exactly what they can do and make it easy for them to do it. Whether the goal is to get a “like” or sign a petition, a good piece of content will get readers to do it happily.
There are all types of content online, and most of it is trying to sell you something. The best content is truly meaningful. Even if it is also trying to sell you something, great content provides value to the reader. It says much more than just, “Buy this!” It’s not filler content; it’s content that truly deserves to be read, and it carries a significant, real message.
Author: Jessica Brown aspires to be a professional freelancer. She is currently participating in the nanowrimo project.