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Organizing Your Content Effectively for SEO

November 6th, 2008 | | Information Architecture, SEO Copy Writing

Content. Content. Content.  It seems that’s all you hear when you start learning about SEO.  The algorithms are wanting to bring relevant content to those who are searching and webmasters are looking for fresh and relevant content to put on their sites.  Before Google penalized for duplicate content, large article repositories were a way to get content quickly on your site.  As the search engines continue to implement more strict polices around duplicate content, webmasters are looking for new sources of relevant content.  Those that have content or resources to content will rank higher, those that don’t will be pushed aside.

What Content Should Be on My Site?

At this time you may be scratching your head wondering “ok, what content should I have? Do I just talk about my business to the point that I’m sick of it?”  True.  Your business is a business, not a repository of encyclopedic articles, but that does not mean you have nothing to write about.  The market your business is in should provide more than enough to talk about.  Rather than just advertise that you provide a product or service, you should expand your site to include why it is important.  This pontificating on all aspects of a subject or niche is called Thought Leadership.

Even if you don’t feel like a thought leader, you will find that almost any topic or niche can be broken into subtopics and those subtopics can have articles, blog posts, or landing pages devoted to that subtopic.  For instance, if my main site was patio furniture, I would want my home page extolling the virtues of patio furniture and why everyone should buy patio furniture through me.  Subtopics could include:

  • Types of patio furniture
  • Caring for patio furniture
  • Materials used in patio furniture

With each of these subtopics, the interest can be drilled down further:

  • Types of patio furniture -> Chairs, tables, umbrellas, awnings, swings, etc …
  • Caring for patio furniture -> Sunlight Exposure, Night Storage, Winter Care, etc …
  • Materials used in patio furniture -> Wood, Metal, Plastic, Wicker, etc …

Because you are a Thought Leader now, you can give your advice on which is better in certain circumstances … wood or plastic? And what I should remember about my metal table during winter storage?

How Do I Position This Content on My Site?

Arranging your content in themes is also called Siloing and it is very friendly to the search engines.  Siloing your content helps keep you from being vague.  Vague words of ”concepts” and “product” and “process” and the techie favorites, “solutions” and “systems,” are ways to get out of saying anything tangible so that no one can be totally pinned on anything.  People will probably not type in “Outdoor Relaxation and Entertainment Concepts” into Google when looking for “Patio furniture.”

There is a lot of untapped potential in any market to write about “why” and not just “what.”  Web template providers work hard to provide feature upon feature to its users, but one thing they lack is why they should use that new feature or, more importantly, how in a relevant real-life example.

Exercising Thought Leadership on your product or service gets you out of the rut of what content you are writing on.  Organizing those topics and subtopics effectivley will help you dominate your niche and before you know it, you have become a leader in your field and you’ll have the search engine rankings to prove it.

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