Thursday, September 18, 2008

Why "Make Good Content" Isn't All It Takes

SEO blogs usually give really great advice, the most prominent tip being to create great content. The idea is if you create only great content, you'll get tons of external links, thus increasing your position in Google. This does, essentially, work. However, the idea of "great content" is a little misleading. I would say "catchy content" or "oddball content" is more like it. For example, I could write an amazing blog post about deer populations in California, but if relatively few people are looking for it or it isn't engaging enough it is unlikely to get very many internal links, thus hampering my ability to be ranked for the search term "Deer Population in California." (As a test, I'll see where I land for this result in a few days).

As a counter to that example, should I write a fairly meaningless and unhelpful post that says "Top 10 Lindsay Lohan Side Boob Photos" I might get tons of links, even if the photos of massive ads between them and pop-ups all over the place and I'm using the photos without permission. That's why "good content" is such an amorphous term. Does "good" mean "helpful" to readers? If the reader wants Lindsay Side-Boob, then I suppose that is good. If "good" means "clean and ethical" then it isn't, and yet I'm still getting external links.

My advice would be to Make Great Content and Make People Want To Read It. Much easier said than done. People read what they want and ignore what they don't, no matter how useful it is.

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