Category Archives: Copywriting and Content Writing Tips

How to improve your SEO by following Google’s “high-quality content” guidelines

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When it comes to recognizing high-quality content to decide your search engine rankings on Google, whose guidelines it pays to follow? Of course, Google’s high-quality content guidelines. If you follow them you can certainly improve your SEO.

This Search Engine Land update says that these high-quality content guidelines are basically for Google’s internal content creators.

Your web content is not just text. It comprises of everything a web page typically has including the HTML source code, the images and videos and JavaScript and other web scripts. Therefore, Google has different style guides that can be accessed by you to improve the overall quality of not just the content but also the way your website serves that content to people as well as search engine crawlers. These are the style guides:

You must wonder, if there are so many things that can affect your search engine rankings, why put so much stress on writing SEO content?

This is because SEO content writing is a building block. It paves the way for better search engine ranking. Even if you get everything else sorted out, unless you have high-quality content that is search engine friendly, you’re not going to be able to improve your SEO.

Improve your SEO with the following high-quality content writing guidelines from Google:

Here are a few things you can keep in mind while writing content for your website or blog. Nothing much new is there but it helps to always revise the fundamental concepts of writing well for better search engine rankings.

The guidelines from Google below are mostly for writing purposes, after that the Google guidelines also tell you how to use optimized images for your content. First, content writing…

  • Write in a conversational style. It is recommended that you write the way you talk. Since the search engine crawlers will also be accessing your content, try to write very simply so that even a robot can understand what you are writing.
  • Sound authoritative and knowledgeable. Remember that Google wants to present content that represents expertise. Your content should help people solve problems. Yes, you can write authoritative, knowledge-written content using simple language.
  • Whenever possible try to follow the American writing style for grammar and spelling. This is probably because the Google ranking algorithm mostly uses the American writing style.
  • Write simple concise and very short sentences with very simple words so that both your users and robots can understand what you are saying.
  • Use numbers and bulleted list when describing steps or when listing multiple points sequentially.
  • When you are linking to other websites and blogs make sure that they are reliable and trustable and don’t contain inferior quality content.

How do other web page components help your SEO according to Google guidelines?

  • Use svg formatted files or optimized .png files and don’t forget to use the alt text for your image tags.
  • Tables are good for organizing information but use them only when you have multiple columns to show.
  • This is something new. Do you know <strong> and <b> have different meanings? Whereas <b> is for visual emphasis, <strong> should be shown for text of strong importance.
  • Whenever possible keep HTML and CSS separate.

There are various other recommendations in the guidelines but these are the basic ones. You may feel that some of them are for aesthetics but they actually help you create more clear and concise text.

You may not be able to apply all the guidelines when writing content for your website or blog but you can at least stick to the standard guidelines such as using simple language and arranging your information in such a manner that it is easier for the Google crawlers to access your content.

Does following these Google guidelines really help you improve your SEO?

I wouldn’t say no. The guidelines are for the internal Google content creators so the company wouldn’t like to give wrong guidelines to their own content creators. That’s one thing.

The other thing is, in these guidelines there is nothing that goes contrary to writing, creating and publishing quality content. Everywhere it is recommended that you use simple, conversational language while writing content not just for the search engines but also for your visitors. You should use the language that is used by your prospective customers and clients, especially when using the search engines. Images should be optimized and the loading time should be minimized.

Don’t get too bogged down by these guidelines, but inculcate them in your day-to-day content writing habits and you will see an improvement in your SEO by default.

10 SEO Content Writing Tips for Your Small Business

10-SEO-content-writing-tips-for-small-businessDo you know that being a small business SEO content writing can easily be the strongest tool available to you? Some tips listed on this blog post can help you to great extent. Remember that these tips are not written in stone and every business may have its own unique requirements. But they can get you started in the right direction.

Content writing for SEO can cut down your advertising and marketing costs. It can significantly improve your search engine rankings. It can increase your business without increasing your costs. It can make people trust you more.

What is the difference between SEO content writing and normal content writing?

In terms of creating high-quality content for your website or blog, there isn’t much difference as far as the list of tips goes. Well-written, relevant content is automatically search engine optimized. Search engines like Google love quality content that solves people’s problems. Just the fact that you are publishing lots of content that solves people’s problems, can significantly improve your search engine rankings.

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Other than that, the fundamental difference between SEO content writing and normal content writing is, you take search engine guidelines into account when creating search engine optimized content so that it becomes easier for search engine crawlers and ranking algorithms to access your content, process it, and then rank it for related keywords and search terms.

You can write high quality content without caring about search engine guidelines. Although your content will be good and once people can access your content and your content may even be able to convert visitors into buyers and customers, you won’t be able to get good search engine traffic, especially if there is lots of competition.

So, normal content is good content, and SEO content is content that is good but is also search engine optimized.

Why SEO content can work wonders for your small business?

As a serious small-business you might be spending lots of money on advertising. If you seek traffic from search engines you must be bidding on different keywords using AdWords. This can be very expensive for your small business.

In AdWords, you may have to pay $2-3 per click for your main keywords. And the problem sometimes is, your main keywords may not even get you much business compared to your secondary or longtail keywords. Still, you spend money on non-performing keywords simply because you want to see traffic to your website.

Looking for an SEO content writing for small business?

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SEO content writing can increase search engine rankings of your small business website organically. Once your search engine rankings improve organically by diligently following these tips, you start getting traffic from search engines without having to pay for every click. Once you have gotten one of your links featured in the top 10 results on Google, whether you get 10 clicks or 10,000 clicks, it’s all free.

The good thing about organic search results is that people prefer to click organic results rather than advertisements. So even in terms of getting more traffic from search engines, organic listings are much better than paid listings.

But how do you make sure that your small business website or blog gets good search engine rankings through your writing?

Listed below are 10 SEO content writing tips for your small business that will increase your search engine rankings, and also improve your conversion rate.

1. Do keyword research before writing content

What keywords do people use to find your website or your content? What search terms do they use? This is one of the most important tips.

You can make a list of keywords and search terms using common sense and little bit of research. You can also use paid and free tools to do keyword research.

One of the most widely used free keyword research tools is the Google AdWords keyword research tool. Although most of its suggestions are intended to encourage you to bid on as many keywords as possible and hence, the suggestions are not as accurate as they should be, it gives you a good beginning, and lots of ideas.

Even if you don’t want to use any tool, do a broad search and then scroll down to suggested searches on Google. This tells you what search terms people are using that are related to your main search term.

2. Start writing SEO content around the keywords you have finalized

Remember that the most important aspect that Google considers for ranking is the quality of your content. No amount of SEO content writing is going to help you if you don’t have quality content on your website. If it is difficult for you to create compelling content using your keywords, in the beginning, just focus on the quality aspect.

Just make sure that the keywords or search term you are targeting appear, most preferably, in the beginning of your web page or blog title. After that, let your creative juices flow.

Once you are satisfied and you feel you have written whatever you wanted to write, start incorporating your keywords. Ideally, if you’re focusing on the core topic, most probably you will automatically end up using your keywords. If not, you will have to creatively incorporate them. Don’t overdo it. Your total number of words to your keywords ratio should be around 3-4%. Overuse of your keywords can get you penalized.

If you use WordPress for managing your website and blog, there is a good add-on called SEOPressor. It gives your content an “SEO rating” and if you are over optimizing – over using your keywords – it lets you know.

Having said that, it doesn’t actually matter how many times you use your keywords as long as you contextually use them. Just don’t overuse them.

3. Create a compelling title for your web page or blog post

Remember that it’s your web page title or blog post title that initially draws people to your website or blog. In the search engine listings, it is your title that appears as hyperlink. In fact, one of the biggest reasons why you should use your keywords in your title is because when people see the keywords they have just used in the title, they tend to click the link more. Even when you share your link using your social networking profiles, it’s your title that appears as the main hyperlink. People will come to your website after you title grabs their attention. Consequently, coming up with keyword-rich compelling titles is a big part of effective SEO content writing.

4. Also focus on longtail keywords

When writing SEO content, don’t ignore your longtail keywords. In fact, you should create dedicated webpages and blog posts dealing with your prominent longtail keywords. But even on your present piece of content, use a mix of your primary keyword and longtail keywords. This will prevent you from over using your main keywords.

It is also recommended that you use LSI keywords. LSI stands for “latent semantic indexing”. In terms of SEO content writing, it means using alternatives to your main keywords. You can use synonyms. You can use alternative expressions.

Read How does incorporating keywords increase your search engine traffic.

5. Mostly focus on providing answers to questions

provide-answers-to-questionsWhen using search engines, people don’t use specific keywords. They normally type questions (or say, if they use voice search). So, provide answers to these questions. Make a list of all possible questions your prospective customers and clients may ask before doing business with you and then publish all the answers using questions as titles.

6. Use conversational style in your SEO writing

use-conversational-style-when-writingPeople don’t use novelish language while surfing the web. They use very common, conversational words. A good example: when people are searching for “bananas” they don’t search for “an elongated yellow fruit”.

Even when they are searching, they use very common words pertaining to your business. You should also avoid using jargon because whereas jargon may make you look cool, it may lose you customers.

You can use a tool like Hemingway Editor to grade your writing. It says that content writing with grade 6-8 is better and gets you good search engine rankings. “Grade” here means, writing with grade 6 can be easily read by a 6th grader.

7. Use a well-defined structure

Use a well-defined structure means using headlines and sub-headlines wherever needed. Organize your thoughts in bullet points. Use quotes wherever necessary. Write simpler sentences and smaller paragraphs. Link to inner pages with appropriate anchor text. Use bold type a few times to highlight your main expressions. Stick to a particular length.

8. Use images to graphically convey your feelings

Long streams of text seem to bore people no matter how informative your text is. Insert images at crucial points. They act as a welcome distraction. They also help people refocus. Don’t use totally unrelated images. If you are comfortable using an image editing tool, create a mix of graphics and text.

9. Focus on something unique when writing SEO content

The more generic your content is, the harder is the competition it faces. Narrow down your targeting as much as possible. Search engine optimization for the search term that isn’t being used by many is much easier.

Also, focusing on something unique will help you avoid writing duplicate content which can attract penalty from Google.

Even if it is not possible to offer something totally unique, address a very unique perspective of your product or service and write about that.

10. Keep optimizing your existing content

SEO content writing doesn’t just mean continuously publishing fresh content. You also need to take care of your existing content. Over the years your website or blog must have collected a ton of content. If this content remains unattended, all that effort goes waste.

Make a list of all the URLs that contain marketable content on your website. Check their search engine rankings for the targeted keywords. If over the weeks, months and years their rankings haven’t improved, start rewriting the content from SEO perspective.

Maybe you used some bad practices like needlessly using your keywords and search terms, and you would like to remove them. Maybe over optimized your content in enthusiasm. Maybe you created thin content.

It is a time-consuming activity, but go through every link, check its rankings, and if it doesn’t rank well, rewrite it.

Concluding remarks

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I personally know a client who has cut down his advertising budget by 70% ever since he started relying more on SEO content and less on advertisements.

A good thing about SEO content is that sometimes the same web page begins to get ranked higher for multiple keywords or keyword combinations. If you use AdWords, you have to pay for every combination, but not for a link that ranks higher organically.

Yes, more effort is required. Content writing for SEO take some time to show results, especially when you have lots of competition. But the rewards are great. You get more targeted traffic. Your marketing cost comes down significantly. Your conversion rate improves. Your brand value improves because people begin to find quality content on your website.

Want to know how you can improve your search engine rankings as well as conversion rate of your small business website through targeted SEO content writing?

How to improve your content writing by properly understanding your customers

improve-your-content-writing-by-understanding-your-customersFrom your business perspective, what is the objective of content writing? Why is it important to understand your customers to write effective, compelling content?

When you are writing content for your website or blog, you are communicating with your visitors – in the case of a business website, you are communicating with your present and prospective customers and clients.

Why do you communicate? Just for the heck of it? Just to keep them on your website? Just to improve your search engine rankings? Just to make them share your links on their social networking profiles?

These things are important, not the “heck of it” part, but the other parts like engaging people, improving search engine rankings, and encouraging people to share your links.

Ultimately, you want people to become your customers and clients. You want them to use your product or service. You want them to pay you, spend money on you. Why would they?

A good thing about the Internet from your point of view is, setting up business is very easy. Just like it is easy for you to set a business, it is also easier for others.

On the negative side, this gives rise to tough competition. In the mid-2000s I was among the very few content writers and I faced very low competition. For some years I got busy with something else and by the time I got my senses back, there were literally thousands of content writers and content writing companies competing with my business.

A good thing about the Internet from your customer’s point of view is, he or she has immediate access to tens, or even hundreds of businesses like you. He or she can compare you with others. He or she can also ask around their friends on Facebook.

When your competitors vie for the attention of your customers, when thousands of distractions keep your customers distracted, it is your content writing (or your content writer) that comes to your rescue.

5 Content Writing Tips to Win Over Your Customers

But content writing cannot deliver in vacuum.

Effective content writing requires you to properly understand your customers. Only then you will be able to create content people will relate to.

Unless they relate to your content, they are not going to do business with you.

customer-going-away-from-your-business

This is a reality that you can accept now, at this very moment, or, you realize it later, when you have lost much business and your competitors are much ahead of you.

For your content writing to work, why is it important to understand your customers?

Whether you want to write engaging content to improve your conversion rate on your website or you want to improve your SEO, at the core of your content writing exists your understanding of your customers’ needs.

What does “understanding your customers’ needs” mean?

It means understanding what they are looking for, and then providing it through content writing.

People are looking for answers. Before they buy something, they want to go through as much information as possible. They want to read reviews. They want to get opinions from their friends. 81% shoppers do online research before buying.

Research means, they go from link to link, reading about the product or service they are about to purchase, as much as possible.

How much content does your customer need to read before doing business with you

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What if all the information they are looking for is present on your website or blog? You can easily publish that information. This way, they won’t have to go anywhere else. When they find what they are looking for on your website, when they finally decide to go ahead with the purchase, they will purchase from your website.

How do you know what they’re looking for? How do you know what sort of questions they have in mind before buying your product or service? Do you have a list of questions they may search for? Do you know what are their concerns?

Do you know how to answer their “whys”, “hows”, “whens” and “whats”?

This, is why it is very important to understand your customers. You have to look at your business from their perspective. Don’t get swept away by the greatness of your product or service. Try to understand what your customers want.

What are the problems they are going through? How can your business solve their problem? How do you communicate to them that your business can solve their problem better than your competitors?

Before writing content, how to know what the customer is looking for?

Content writing is an ongoing process. It is not possible to know everything about your customers from the beginning itself. In fact, your content can help you in this regard.

But here are a few observations you can make to understand your customers better:

  • Talk to people outside of your business: Talk to people who have nothing to do with your business. They don’t know anything about your product or service. But it would help if your product or service could help them in some way. Ask them what would stop them from doing business with you or what would encourage them to do business with you? What would be their concerns?
  • Closely follow other blogs and websites in your niche: Lots of good content is published in almost every niche, almost every day. If possible, even join members-only communities (for which you may have to pay) to get the insights of people who have already created lots of content in your niche.
  • Do keyword research, especially suggestions by Google: Search for keywords on Google. When you search on Google, in the end of the search results, you see other suggestions from Google. These are the search terms being used by people and you can use them to create content for your blog or website.
  • Use Google Analytics: The Google Analytics data will be available to you after a few months of continuous content writing. The Analytics dashboard will be able to tell you what search terms are people using to find content on your website. By studying this data you can know whether your content writing approach is right or wrong.
  • Get feedback: Getting feedback directly from your customers and clients is very easy these days. You can interact with your customers and clients on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and thousands of other platforms available these days. You can also encourage people to leave comments on your own website or blog.
  • Create a comprehensive FAQs section: Creating an FAQs section is the best way of writing targeted content. Using your common sense, try to figure out what questions your customers and clients may have before deciding to do business with you. Address all these questions in your FAQ section.

Credible Content can help you understand your customers and clients and then write targeted content

As a team of professional content writers at Credible Content we can write content your audience is looking for. Randomly writing content to cover all your keywords and search terms doesn’t do you much good. Of course, optimizing your content is necessary, but you can do it even while creating targeted, well-meaning content that improves your conversion rate.

Our content writing service will help you get higher search engine rankings and improve your conversion rate.

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Turn into a Great Content Writer With These 12 Productivity Apps

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Whether you’re writing content for yourself or for your clients, it is always a race against time. There never seems to be enough content. To make a difference, you need to be a prolific content writer. If you want to cover more platforms like your own blog, Medium and LinkedIn, you must write more. If you want to improve your search engine rankings you need to cover all your topics. When you need to cover all your topics, obviously, you must write a lot.

The good thing is, these days technology is always there to help you. Writing content doesn’t always mean having to sit in front of your computer or laptop (yes, people still use these). Connectivity is no longer a problem these days. If you store all your files in the cloud you can access from any device. Better, if you use a cloud-based word processor like Google Docs, you don’t even have to worry about storing and syncing your files. Provided you can run Google Docs, you can access your documents anywhere.

Not just Google Docs, if you publish your content using WordPress then the blogging platform has an app that you can install on your mobile phone. The same goes for Medium.

This means, no matter where you are, you can write. Whether you are a writer or a content writer, your writing tools these days are always with you.

There are many productivity apps that can help you become a great content writer. As a content writer, being productive means being able to write whenever you feel like it, whenever you get an idea. It also means being able to manage your content and being able to publish it on the go.

Listed below are the 12 productivity/writing apps that can help you turn into a great content writer. I use most of these apps. At one time or another, I have used all these apps. I keep jumping from one app to another depending on what I want to achieve and what level of writing work I’m handling.

Microsoft Word mobile app

Microsoft-Word-logoThroughout all these years I have been a consistent user of Microsoft Word. I like the word processor. It gives me all the features that I need. On the PC, it even has a “blog” template that allows me to write drafts and then directly post them to WordPress. Since I also make other changes that can only be made to WordPress, I publish the post in draft mode.

For years it was impossible to use the Microsoft Word mobile app because the interface would act the way it works  on a PC or a large tablet. You couldn’t see the contents of the document on a mobile phone because they would become tiny.

Recently, around 6-7 months ago, they have introduced an alternative mobile layout. This allows you to work on your document just like any other text editor on your mobile phone. This is a great improvement.

OneDrive as my Cloud Drive

onedrive-logoI can seamlessly use Microsoft Word on my mobile phone because I store all my documents in OneDrive. The documents are immediately synced, wherever I have installed OneDrive and Microsoft Word. So, suppose I’m working on my PC, on a document. Then I need to move away. I’m sitting somewhere and only my mobile phone is there. When I want to, I take it out, launch the Microsoft Word app and my document is there. It syncs in real-time. You can feel that OneDrive for Microsoft must had been an afterthought: it is not as good as Dropbox and Google Drive in terms of interface and usability. But it works for me.

Google Docs for collaborative writing and word processing

Google DocsI was using Google Docs heavily before Microsoft Word became friendlier on my mobile phone. If you are using Google Docs and if you don’t have Microsoft Word, and if you are doing just word processing, you don’t miss Word much.

Google Docs is one of the best word processors for mobile phone. It immediately syncs all your documents; you can work from anywhere. It is not a very heavy app. You can tap on it and start writing without even naming your document.

Xmind as a mind mapping tool

xmind-logoI use Xmind not just to work on complicated marketing and management plans but also to organize my thoughts when working on longer blog posts.

Xmind is not my particular choice for the mind mapping tool because there are many such tools available. You can install a mind mapping tool on your desktop. You can use a mobile app. You can also use it within your browser.

If you haven’t used mind mapping for writing, try it out. You will be surprised to find how simply you can organize complex ideas.

Jotterpad text editor for Android

jotterpad-logoA lot of times I work on text files. Text files are lighter and there are less distractions. There is a great selection of text editors for PC. Jotterpad is an excellent text editor for your mobile phone. It has different settings and layouts. It even allows you to use your own font settings. Being a text editor, you can launch it in a jiffy and start writing. It’s pure writing.

Dropbox cloud drive

Dropbox is one of the oldest cloud drive and file syncing apps and services. It is one of the first cloud storage services I started using. These days I don’t use it as my main cloud storage device because I use OneDrive that comes free with my Office365 subscription.

I was their Premium user. Then I stopped using their premium services once I started using OneDrive.  When I started using Jotterpad, I needed to install Dropbox because it uses Dropbox to sync files.

If you don’t have access to OneDrive then I can say that Dropbox is the best file syncing service you can find. It is much more efficient. It is quite sleek. Its interface is not as rickety as OneDrive’s. Microsoft Word works with Dropbox too.

WriteMonkey as desktop editor

writemonkey-logoIf I’m using Jotterpad on my mobile phone, I need to have a nice desktop version of a text editor. 90% of the time I do my content writing on my PC. For the PC, so far, the best text editor that I have used is WriteMonkey. It has the best features of all “distraction free” writing apps you may have tried, especially among text editors. It covers your entire desktop when you are writing. It lets you customize your layout. You can have your own fonts and custom font colors. It even plays a typing sound!

Google Keep as a notetaking app

google-keep-logoGoogle Keep is the lightest notetaking app these days. Whenever you think of notetaking you think of Evernote, but Evernote can be very heavy. Besides, on your PC or laptop you don’t even have to Google Keep. You can use it in your browser window.

But, for Android and iOS there are very light Google Keep apps that you can easily install.

In Google Keep you don’t even need to name your notes. Create a new note and make a note of whatever you feel like. It is going to be there when you are writing.

You can also tag your notes so that you can find them when you need them.

Trello as a content publishing organizer

trello-logoTo be frank, I started using Trello recently, reluctantly. But once you start using it, it is quite a useful app for organizing your content writing schedule.

I’m not still sure how you would use Trello for your specific need, but this is how I use it:

  • Create a new list called Blog Titles.
  • Whenever you want to add something to the list, you “Add a card”.
  • Keep adding blogging ideas to the above list – there is also a provision to add descriptions and URLs (research data).
  • Create a new list called Blog Titles – In Process.
  • When I start writing a blog post I drag the card and drop it in the Blog Titles – In Process list. If I’m working on multiple blogging ideas, I can track on which blog posts I am working.
  • Create a new list called Blog Titles – Published.
  • When I publish a blog post (including publishing and broadcasting) I move the card to the Blog Titles – Published list.

I have created these Trello three-list combinations for various projects to track ideation, actual work in progress, and then completed work.

OneNote as a great information organizer

onenote logoAgain, I started using OneNote because it comes free with my Office 365 subscription. Before that I was using Evernote Premium. OneNote is bulkier and bit rickety compared to Evernote but Microsoft is constantly improving it.  I have seen improvements within days.

Compared to Evernote it is much more flexible and there are great ways of organizing information. There is a browser add-on that lets you clip important bits of information right from your browser.

Hemingway Editor to help you avoid writing complicated sentences

hemingway-editor-logoI have just started using Hemingway Editor. Since I’m used to writing in Microsoft Word, I feel a bit awkward. It’s also annoying when suddenly you sentence turns yellow or red. But, the more I use it, the more I realize its usefulness.

It is helping me keep my sentences shorter and simpler. This way, a single sentence can contain a single idea. I have this habit of creating long sentences.  I tend to capture multiple ideas with single sentences that unnecessarily complicates them. Unlike Grammarly, Hemingway Editor doesn’t do much proofreading. So far, I have observed it doesn’t bother with spelling or grammar mistakes.

Its primary focus is on tracking how many adverbs and adjectives you are using. It tells you whether you are using passive voice or active voice. It keeps track of sentences that are hard to read.

The only problem as of now is, it doesn’t seem to have a mobile version.

Noisli to drown the noises around you

noisli-logoAs a writer the biggest problem you may face, are the distractions around you. The sounds. You can hear the sounds around you. Some construction is going on. Kids are playing on the street. People are chatting with each other. TV is playing in the drawing room. Your neighbor has just formed a rock band.

Noisli helps you keep all these distracting sounds away so that you can concentrate on your writing. It creates white noise. It can also play soothing music. You will need a headphone or earplugs to use it. You can either install an app on your mobile phone or you can use it within your browser.

All these apps and services that I have listed above may not all be necessary for turning you into a great content writer. But, in their own ways, they help you write better.

After years of content writing for myself and my clients, what I have realized is, writing needs to be continuous. If you can’t write, your writing groove dissolves. There is no on-off switch. The legendary Indian writer Munshi Premchand was known to have this on-off switch. After his 9-to-5 job he could come home and start writing. If someone came to meet him, he would entertain the guest, and then get back to his writing. He lived in a crowded neighbourhood. He had many kids. He took care of his domestic responsibilities unlike many other writers. Despite that, he has written timeless classics.

But most of us don’t have that on-off switch. So, when the switch is on, we would like to draw greatest mileage. When an idea strikes, we want to be able to write it down immediately. When you want to access that particular bit of information, you should be able to access it no matter where we are. When we want to write, we should be able to write, whether we are sitting in front of the PC or we are fiddling with our smartphone. Technology, with all its distractions, fortunately, allows us to do that.

Importance of content writing throughout the sales funnel

Content writing is not just about improving SEO – although without content writing there can be no SEO, but that’s another matter.

Throughout your sales funnel, high-quality content plays an important role. Even small oversights can send your prospects away to your competitor.

Read Content matters at every layer of your marketing funnel.

Typically, a sales funnel looks like this:

importance-of-content-writing-throughout-the-sales-funnel

As you can see in the image, normally there are four stages in your sales funnel:

  1. Awareness and education
  2. Interest
  3. Decision
  4. Sale

Actually, there should also be an after-sale section in the sales funnel but normally it is not included (it should be).

The need to make your customers and clients aware and educate them about the benefits of your product or service underpins the essence of content marketing.

These days I’m working with a client who is planning to launch his service. He believes that most of his clients are unaware of the benefits of the services he is planning to offer. Hence, in the beginning, he wants to focus on the “awareness and education” part of the sales funnel through his content. For that he is hiring my content writing services.

Content writing for awareness and education

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In this phase of the sales funnel, you may be targeting, typically, two types of customers (or clients):

  1. Those who are totally unaware that they need your product.
  2. Those who know what they need but don’t know how to find a solution and where to find it.

The first type of customers under this stage of your sales funnel, those who are unaware that they need your product, need to be educated. They have no idea what they are missing.

Suppose, there is a company that is going through work-management chaos, but it has never crossed their minds that a tool like Slack or Asana can help them streamline their operations. They might not even be aware of the concept of some “project management” tool.

Since they don’t know that such a tool exists, they may not even look for it. Although, day by day it’s becoming very difficult to manage their projects.

You need to make these people aware. You need to educate them through targeted content writing.

Again using the project-management-problem scenario, one of the managers may search for “how to solve project management problems”, or “cannot manage projects properly”, or “project management tips”, and such.

If you are selling a project management software, wouldn’t it be nice if people searching for such solutions come to your website?

A good example is Open Forum by American Express. The blog provides hard-core business advice. People don’t even have to be American Express customers. They may not even know what sort of services American Express provides. But they have business-related problems and solutions to these problems exist on Open Forum. When they visit Open Forum, when they visit it regularly, they begin to realize that many of the business problems that they face can be solved by using some of the American Express financial solutions.

You can apply the same content writing technique to make people aware of your product or service and educate them about its benefits.

During this phase, it is also important that you capture email addresses of your prospective customers so that you can send them regular updates. It is only due to the strength of your content writing that people subscribe to your mailing list.

Content writing during the “interest”phase of the sales funnel

the-customer-is-interested

In the interest phase of the sales funnel people are interested in a solution. They need to be convinced. They have different options in front of them. Through consistent and quality content writing you must convey to them there is a great solution to your problem that exists and it exists with you.

This is the phase when they know that (referring to the above project management problem) there are various project management software solutions available for their particular problem.

You need to keep in touch but not in the conventional sense.

Provide them valuable content on an ongoing basis. Keep their interest alive by providing them quality content on a consistent basis. Without being pushy, constantly, subtly, keep communicating to them how your solution can solve their problem.

He or she may explore other options available in the market. All the more reason you stand out by continuously publishing quality content on your own website as well as using other platforms. You should be visible and your content writing should be relatable to your business.

The decision-making stage of your sales funnel

the-customer-is-ready-to-buy

At this stage, your customer is ready to buy from you. This is a crucial stage. Often the customer develops cold feet (because he or she finally must shell out money). At this stage, you should reassure him or her that he or she is making the right choice.

Your existing content plays a very important role. Your content writing needs to hook your customer who is about to buy from you so that he or she is not distracted or, there is no confusing information on your website to change his or her decision.

You must have noticed that above I have continuously used the expression “phase”, but suddenly I started using “stage”.

I did that purposely.

A phase can last for a long time, in many instances, even years. A stage, on the other hand, is short and hence, more crucial.

The importance of content writing when the sale has happened

content writing for existing customers

Your job is not done as soon as the sale has taken place. Through high-value content writing you can always keep in touch with your existing customers. The chance of selling to an existing customer is 60-70% while the chance of selling to a new customer is 5-20% (source).

Many companies claim that 40% of their business comes from existing clients so, feeding high quality content to existing customers – customers who have already purchased from you – is as important as, and in many cases, even more important than, writing content for completely new customers.

How can your content writing help you keep in touch with your existing customers?

  1. Provide answers to all their after-sale questions so that they don’t have to depend on your support team.
  2. Create a comprehensive FAQs section and regularly update it.
  3. Send email updates solely to your existing customers with new offers or complimentary offers or related offers (based on their past purchase decisions). Cross selling, for example, and up-selling.
  4. Create an online community through your blog and bulletin board where your existing customers can interact with their fellow customers and interact with you and fellow customers.

The importance of content writing throughout your sales funnel needs to be well defined and recognized. Optimizing and publishing high-quality content throughout your sales funnel can help you create a tightly packed, high-performance sales-funnel that turns casual visitors into hot leads and hot leads into paying customers and paying customers into repeat customers, on an ongoing basis.