Despite placing consistent emphasis on the significance of high-quality content, Google has been seemingly reluctant to elaborate on the specifics of such a statement.
Recently, however, Google’s own Developer Relations Group released guidelines designed to assist creators in the production of high-quality digital content. Although these guides only represent a small percentage of Google’s internal instructions and are primarily geared towards developers, they are still exceptionally useful resources containing important points that can be applied across a range of different sectors and industries.
Well-written content, code, and UX each contribute, with the perfect combination helping content to soar up the rankings. Keep the following points in mind to ensure your content follows best practises and is placed in the best position to attract high-quality traffic and deliver helpful, relevant, and succinct information directly to your audience.
Ensuring content has a clear purpose and is written with an intended audience in mind is essential. Your tone will vary depending on your business and audience, but it is best practice to aim somewhere between the conversational tone you would take when talking to your friends and the formal, somewhat reserved language of a robot. Essentially, you should be precise and concise, but not edit your copy so much that you iron out all facets of your personality and humanity.
Remaining accessible to a wide audience is also important. Utilising short sentences containing easily comprehensible words is particularly helpful when translating your content into other languages.
Also, since improper linking structures should be addressed, with bad practices left firmly in the past, all external links must be highly relevant, respectable and reliable.
Code and UX
When it comes to code and UX, details are hugely important. Your approach to multimedia should be inclusive, which you should take to be a term which encapsulates everything from the consistent utilisation of meaningful and accurate alt tags for imagery, to captions and transcripts for every piece of video and audio content.
HTML should be used for structure, with the intricacies of CSS used for visual style. Where possible, HTTPS protocol should be applied to every embedded resource, including images and other forms of media.
With seemingly small details playing even larger parts than ever before, overlooking intricacies should be relegated to the past. This means using the most appropriate function for each task, down to ensuring you are only using “b” to emphasise visually, and “strong” to identify something notably important.
Things to avoid
Generally, if there is a way to simplify your content, it is advisable to take those steps. An overuse of elaborate metaphors, confusing technical language, non-universal slang terms and buzzwords complicates content, and should be ironed out before publication.
Sentences which begin in the same or very similar ways should also be altered, along with a reliance on simple phrases, such as “at this time”, which don’t offer much in the way of value to an audience. Similarly, anchor text should be incorporated into fully formed sentences, avoiding the temptation to ask audiences to “click here” to be forwarded to a different page.
Establishing and maintaining a unique voice is important to audiences, and is something you simply cannot achieve when relying on the same clichéd terms and sentence structures as everybody else.