Writing web content : Cumbria-based so that the writing reflects your business

The importance of good web content

Writing web content used to be all about short punchy web pages packed with multiple repetitions of your keyword for search engines to find. But the web has changed. Who thought that you might have a target of writing 1,000+ words for a page or a blog post?

The changes have been led by Google, whose search engine now accounts for 87% of web searches in the UK. Today Google emphasises the need for ‘real content’ if your web page is going to feature high in its rankings.

Significantly, if you want your website to rank highly, you need plenty on a web page for people to read and consider. To take time over and to link on to other relevant pages on your website. And hopefully to answer a ‘Call to Action’ – a download, an enquiry, an order.

Overwhelmingly Google now wants to see a web page that is well written, of a good length and in particular contains text that is written for humans and not for machines.

Web content writing for humans

The Google algorithm is secret, but they do announce major changes every few years. They also quietly make smaller but still significant changes all the time.

One of the major changes was to increase the emphasis on the content of a web page, away from merely counting how often keywords appear on a page. Instead, Google looks for the engagement of the reader and how well the text reflects the major theme of the page and of the website.

The Google algorithm is said to calculate, amongst many other elements:

  • the time readers remain on the web page
  • how many clicks there are to relevant pages
  • the number of similar phrases there are to the keyword phrase itself

The Google algorithm is constantly changing and becoming more complex, but one thing stands out above all others for Google: Content is King.

Lake District Ideas
My Lake District Ideas blog site
Web content and web design for the guest house Motherby House
900-word web content and web design for the guest house Motherby House
Example of Blog Post
Example of Blog Post: Top 5 Sustrans Cycle Routes

Web content on Bing – a different emphasis to Google

The second most popular search engine in the UK, and presumably in Cumbria as well, is Bing. 9% of searches online use the Microsoft’s Bing search engine.

That makes Bing much less important overall, but research has shown that Bing tends to be used more by an older audience.

So don’t ignore that Bing tends to rank only the front page of a website, because Bing’s users might just be your main customers.

That makes the content of the front page of your website even more important than with Google.

How many words should there be on your web page or blog?

Blog and web expert R. L. Adams* writes, “Never, ever, ever write anything below 1,000 words. The longer the post the more chances you have for it to be engaging.

Never less than 1,000 words?! 1,000 words is a lot of words. 2,000 (the actual recommendation by Mr Adams) is, you might notice, twice as many.

Have a glance at this blog post of mine at just over 1,500 words to see what that quantity of words looks like on a page: Top 5 Sustrans Cycle Routes in Britain. Or the blog post Historic Houses of the Lake District.

Can you write that many words without it taking half the working week? If not, why not ask me?

1,500 words might be a tall ask for every page, but for your front page, or for blogs, 300+ seems to be very important; 500+ much better; 1,000+ gold standard!

What else should a web page contain?

Web content is important, but it should also lead on to a ‘call to action’ – make a booking, download a form, sign up for a newsletter, etc. So if I write web content for you, there will be a number of links through the text, or an enquiry form – whichever is relevant.

There will also be subheadings, again with variations on the keyword. Subheadings are designed both to help the reader skim to segments he or she is interested in and at the same time to show Google what the page is about.

'A Lake District Grand Tour' was Cotswold Keswick's Book of the Month when it was published
‘A Lake District Grand Tour’ was Cotswold Keswick’s Book of the Month when it was published.

The text, of course, will certainly show keywords that a customer might search for. However the text will also contain variations on those keywords so that the page is not stuffed with repetitions.

How I can help you with your web content

First, I will need to discuss your business with you, learning what is important to you and what is important to your customers. If you are in Cumbria or nearby, we can meet, but it’s not essential.

It could easily be that you need a blog post or web page that reflects Cumbria or the Lake District, in which case I am well placed. I am the author of A Lake District Grand Tour and the writer of the blog posts at LakeDistrictIdeas.co.uk. I have lived in Cumbria for over thirty years and know the county well.

Even if your website is not related to the area, I have years of experience of marketing (and of writing). I have worked in marketing all my working life, with an MBA along the way (though in a slightly distant past…) and have three published books to my name.

Perhaps asking an author to write for you might also help avoid some pitfalls? Beware the Apostrophe Police! (What did I see on a school website recently? Vacancies for “two teacher’s”. Not good.)

Using suitable styles of writing for your web content

Trade Journal ‘Printwear and Promotion’ – Feature on Balmoral Knitwear
Example Trade Journal Feature – ‘Printwear and Promotion’ – Feature on Balmoral Knitwear

My style of writing will change for different clients. Serious products demand serious writing, such as the piece for the Trade Journal here for Balmoral Knitwear.

But humour can be very useful in a blog post, so these reviews of my Lake District book might be helpful:

The Cumbria Magazine: ‘A sense of humour in abundance.

The Lake District in Books: ‘I lost count of the wifely queries, “What are you laughing at?”.’

You can find serious and humorous styles on my blog site LakeDistrictIdeas.co.uk.

What happens next?

I will target writing a page or a blog post of however many words you choose. If it is 300 you want, fine. 1,000 words (a bit like this web page): good!

My content will target giving information that your readers should find engaging enough to hold their attention. And then lead on to an action.

Today, I hope it leads you to send me the form below!

Contact Mike Carden

Call me on 07949 550 320 or complete the form below.

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Thank you

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*Quote from R. L. Adams – SEO Training Academy. Full quote: “Never, ever, ever write anything below 1000 words. Ever. However, this doesn’t mean you should ramble on. Google is acutely interested in engagement levels. The longer the post, the more chances you have for it to be engaging. I almost never write a post less than 2000 words on Wanderlust Worker, and the average page view is roughly 6.5 minutes. That engagement has helped the site soar to the top of Google’s SERPs, ranking #1 for extremely competitive keywords such as “self discipline,” “failure lessons,” “smarter goals,” etc. etc. etc.”

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Mike Carden, writing web content : Cumbria and Lake District-based so that the writing reflects your business