If you are involved in online marketing, blogging or other online businesses, you know Content Is King. If you have just started, or want to start, something online and don’t think you good enough to write great content then you have found the right place. Read this article for a step by step guide to How To Write Great Content For Beginners – It Takes Planning.
In this article you will learn:
- How to write articles that fit into you Site Plan
- What is the Question that is being asked
- How to research the topic
- How to Plan the article
- How To fill in the meat
- Ensure that you answer the question
- How to make sure that your reader finds your Article.
Although SEO is important to get visitors, it is just as important to write for the person reading the article and not for the search engine!
Where Does It Fit In Your Site Publishing Plan
Before you started your site, you will have had a plan about:
- how you will develop your site,
- what topics you will cover, and
- how frequently you will publish the relevant articles.
Just make sure that you are sticking to your plan and that you are not straying off course by writing irrelevant articles. I am pretty sure that your cooking followers will not find an article on fitting a new clutch to your Honda Civic very interesting.
Define & Research The Question
I refer to the Keywords as Questions being asked, and I will explain this below, but you have to find the best Keyword and how do you do this?
There are many different methods of finding suitable keywords and there are many tools such as Keyword search tools available. I do not have absolute confidence in these tools as often a keyword search tool will show that the keyword has little or no monthly searches but id you type it into a search engine, that tells a completely different story.
Often the page created with that low SEO value keyword get thousands of visits. Go Figure. Now I am not saying that I don’t use Keyword search tools. I just don’t credit them with 100% accuracy. I use them as a guideline and a source of ideas but my mail tools are Google and common sense.
I make use of Google search bar and its drop down list more than anything else. I find a huge amount of ideas from doing the Alphabet Soup Technique. This is my go-to method and the Keyword Search Tool that I use has this automated to a large degree so that you type in a possible keyword and the tool provides you with hundreds of options in the list, all the way from A to Z. All this in seconds and all I have to do is peruse and select my keywords.
So now back to Keywords and What is the question? it is not always a direct question typed into a search engine. Often a statement is typed into the search bar of the search engine. Often it is a term like ” Kefir sour dough”. So that becomes the possible keyword but what is the question behind it?
Clearly the searcher is interested in two things, Kefir and Sour dough, but their main intent is probably to find out how to make sour dough with kefir. This would be the question that you should answer in your article. There could be some additional advice that you could give to be more helpful.
By giving other relevant advice, like:
- Where to buy Kefir grains
- how to make your own kefir
- what milk is best for kefir
- How to store your kefir when you go on holiday
All these tips would probably be useful to your visitors and they will probably stay on your page longer to read them. If they were linked to other relevant articles on your website, where the visitor could go to, to get detailed info, thus spending longer on your site, finding more relevant and authoritative content.
The longer the user spends on your site, the better the search engine thinks of your site. The Search Engine will consider your site to be more authoritative because of the amount of time the visitor spends on your site.
So researching and understanding what your visitors are looking for is important. By understanding what your visitor is looking for will help you to write relevant and authoritative articles and give you the opportunity to direct them to other relevant authoritative articles.
Research The Topic
We all have skills and a fair amount of experience in life and this is often what we base our articles on and this is good because we have interest in the subject, but this could be problematic if we are not up to date with modern findings and methods.
I kept show budgies for many years and have often toyed with the idea of starting a website in this niche. The problem for me is that in the years that I have not been involved in the fancy, it has developed many new colours and types of birds that I am no longer relevant. I could write the absolute basics but that would be that.
To write an authoritative post on this subject for anyone that has any knowledge in the fancy I would have to study and possibly even start breeding birds again so that I can give quality advice. Now this is not the case in every niche.
Let’s say that your niche is “Ford Capri” motor vehicles. If you were an experienced mechanic that worked on these vehicles until they went off the market, you would probably still be very relevant because the vehicles have not changed.
Your advice would probably still be sound and would be trusted by most visitors for years to come, making it a truly evergreen article.
There are no “new Breeds” of the Ford Capri. You probably would still need to keep up to date on parts and where to get them etc and this would be where your research would come in.
Not every niche need you to be an expert on the subject, provided that you have done the research. If your Niche is in the home and garden niches and you do all your own repairs on your taps, replacing washers etc, you could definitely write a “how to change a washer on your garden tap“.
This would be different for installing new gas geyser in your house as this would require expertise and in most cases, the person doing it would need a license.
When researching a topic, make sure that you have made use of authoritative sites and not just the first site you find. You need to check the facts against other sites to make sure you get it right.
A good practice would be to have references at the end of the article (especially on technical articles) and possibly even a disclaimer.
Plan The Article
Write Article Headlines And Content To Engage – This is important if you want to keep your visitor on the page. If the content is relevant but badly written with long paragraphs and with lots of different coloured text etc. you will probably lose your visitor to another site.
Have Appropriate and eye catching headings that attract your readers attention and tells them what is in the paragraphs below. Make them feel that they neeeed to read it before they leave the page.
Breaking the page up into paragraphs with good, relevant headings that explain what is coming up, is a winning formula. You should also keep your paragraphs short with a good amount of white to relax the eyes.
Don’t forget to plan for relevant media on your page. Let’s face it, Video Sells and people watch a video before they read an article.
So, if you can, make a video that supports your article and upload it to your YouTube account. You can then embed it in your article. Placing it at the top of the page is best. You don’t need any fancy equipment to make a video for your site. There are 100s of videos that people have make with their cell phones that are bringing in 100s of visitors
Another “Don’t forget” is Place relevant screenshots, graphs, charts and photos on your site. They draw people because it breaks up the long paragraphs of text. Make sure they are relevant and don’t forget to add the Alt Tag.
When I plan an Article, I normally add the headings that I plan to use so that the structure of the article is there and I don’t get distracted and go off topic. This also helps when you don’t right the article on the same day that you research it. When you come back to it in a day or two or in a month, it is all laid out and it is easy to fill in the meat of the article.
Fill In The Meat
Know Your Target Audience. To know what to write, you need to know who is the person you are writing for. Imagine a specific person in your niche that you would give advice to. Your article should be aimed at that person and should be pretty much in the same style and tone as if you were standing face to face, speaking to him or her.
In other words, that it should have a great user experience. So what does User Experience mean, simple:-
- The topic is relevant
- The article is categorised and easy to find on your site
- Your site is distraction Free – that is free of unnecessary flashing headlines, not too many adverts and lists etc in the sidebar
- The article is easy to read
- There is enough white space.i.e. there is not just a mass of text. There are headings, short paragraphs (2 – 3 lines) and Clear, relevant images? Don’t forget that ALT TAG for the images
Is The Question Answered
Read your article as if you are the ideal reader. You need to find it relevant to the question (Keyword), easy to read, and most importantly, it must be informative and answer your question clearly. If you need to look for more information then the article is incomplete.
If your article is a how to article, make sure you have clear instructions with relevant images and screenshots to clearly show your reader how it’s done.
If you answer the question fully, then you have completed your article. You must just ensure a pleasant reader experience.
Make Sure He Finds It
You are not writing for the search engine. Google does not buy products or join platforms so you won’t make money from them. So who are you targeting? People like you and I. They have likes and dislikes and they are looking for something and it is your job to give them what they are looking for.
Where do you find him/her The next thing you need to do is to understand where you will find your reader. Yes, I know “on the internet” but where on the internet. Do they use search engines, or use:
- Twitter etc.
You have spent hours working on your article and it is now complete. It answers the question with authority, is easy to read and has links to other relevant authoritative articles on your site. So, what is short? Visitors! You need to get visitors to your article.
To do this, you want to get it onto the search engines and here is there is a bit of geek stuff involved which I will deal with fully in another post. What you need to do is make use of bing webmaster tools and Google search console to get your article listed on the search engine.
You will probably find a good number of your target audience so instead of waiting for the search engines you can post on social media with links to your article. Careful, you don’t want to spam these platforms. Don’t just post links. Add some interesting comment as a lead in to your article and then add the link to your article.
Writing Like An Expert
Getting good at something means that you need to do it until it is easy. Most people, myself included, find it a challenge in the beginning to write 500 words and that’s OK.
The problem is that you can barely outline the problem in that amount of words, let alone provide an in depth and useful answer. The only way to get to the point of writing in depth, helpful articles is to write more articles.
I find the biggest stress with writing if finding topics and researching the articles. If you want to make your writing life less stressful, I strongly suggest that you plan your articles 15 to 20 articles in advance. No, you don’t have write them. Just determine the topics by researching the Keywords first.
I find that by batching my work, I get through it much more productively. While researching for a topic or keyword, I more often than not find a few that I find suitable. I then note them down and as I finish one I will start the next until I have found about 20 Keywords/topics/questions that I want to write about, that fit my sites plan.
So, instead of sitting down and researching a topic, then finding suitable keywords and researching the subject, I will in one day, find all my topics ( basically questions that are being asked of the search engines).
Now I know what I will be writing about for the next month. No stressing about finding topics to write about. This helps with your need to make sure that your site flows.
To help with the writing, I tend to open a document for each keyword. In the platform I use, there is a tool called Site Content writer that comes with the membership and I can open a page for each keyword and add all the paragraph headings to the page.
By doing this, I have effectively laid out the content structure. I do this for all the Keywords that I have planed for the month. Now, when I come to write the article in a day or two or towards the end of the month, all the grunt work is done and now I just fill in the meat.
Buy doing this very early in the month, my months plan is done. I don’t have to stress about what to write and I often complete two articles a day. I can then set them up to post on a specific date and I can move on to the next article.
You have seen how to pin point what the visitor is looking for, what they are really asking for. You can research keywords and articles and you cal lay out your site so that is easy reading with lots of relevant information.
You can reduce your stress levels by researching 15 to 20 Keywords in advance and you can layout the article plan, the headlines, in advance. That takes care of the stress of thinking of articles and researching them every day.
All that is left is to write articles and the more you write, the better you will become at it. Soon, you will write content like a pro. It’s not rocket science…..it’s practice.
I would really appreciate your opinion. Please leave it in the comments block below