The increase in demand for content has led to an upsurge in the need for professional writers. Clients, especially, value those who can deliver high quality and valuable content that will appeal to their audience.
The factors used to gauge the quality of content keep changing with time to accommodate the needs of users and search engines. Anyone intending to keep producing great content should, therefore, stay updated at all times. Below are among the top growing trends in article writing.
- Content Format
To gain favor with both search engines and users you have to use a format that is not only eye-catchy but also SEO friendly. This includes use of catchy titles, avoiding long paragraphs (3 – 4 lines should be enough), using subheadings, using bullet points, avoiding filler words, using infographics and images among others.
You also need to deeply research on what users hope to gain from your content so as to provide them with useful content. Finding out common phrases used to search that particular topic can give you a hint.
- Key Research Optimization
As mentioned above it is important to find commonly used search phrases related to the topic you want to write about. Search engines term these as keywords. Effective keyword research can garner impressive traction in search results. When applying keywords, you ought to classify them into two categories, namely
- Evergreen Keywords (80%) – These are keywords that never ‘go out of style’. Even in years to come, they will still be practical as they are today.
- Trendy keywords (20%) – These keywords keep up with what’s new. For example, new products or styles may come up and users tend to include them in search phrases when looking for related content.
Incorporating the two types of keywords will make your content stand a better chance at getting discovered. However, ensure not to overstuff keywords.
In the past. you could simply clutter your content with keywords, even if not related, and search engines would still rank you. Not anymore. Google, the largest search engine, now heavily penalizes any page found with overstuffed keywords. Such a page risks being demoted in rankings or even removed.
- Conversational Tone
It is almost natural for writers to adopt a formal tone in their work as that’s what we (most of us) have been used to since joining school. However, research shows that a formal tone isn’t as effective as a conversational tone when it comes to content writing.
Users can relate more with your content if they feel like you are addressing them directly. It evokes a connection and makes you feel more human and genuine.
Also, it makes writing seamless for you. Most writers, if not all, agree that it is not always an easy task to write. Sometimes ideas dry up, and you feel stuck. Writing in a conversational tone feels like how you normally talk which helps words and ideas flow easily.
To add on, your content gets fun for both you and your readers who will most probably read to the last word, unlike content written in a formal tone, where most people admittedly just scan through it without reading in detail.
- Long-Form Content
A couple of years ago content that ranged between 300-600 words was considered ideal. Now, long content (1200 – 6000 words) is more preferable. This is because lengthy content provides more information and a clearer understanding of the given topic.
Also, it enables you appropriately optimize it for SEO. You can include several keywords within your article without stuffing it. For these reasons, search engines tend to favor long-form content over short-form content.
- Utilizing Writing Tools
Writing is now much easier thanks to the many writing tools available today. Different writing tools help you correct grammar in your work, check plagiarism, come up with great titles, remove fluff, format your work appropriately, find keywords and ensure they are properly utilized within your content, and so on.
Utilizing such tools not only makes your work easier but also improves its overall quality. Even better, most of them can be used for free.
- Quality Content
Having realized the numerous benefits of content, businesses are now heavily investing in acquiring it from professional writers. Truth is, some of them can write, but they would rather hire someone who knows the ropes of the industry. Therefore, they expect nothing short of outstanding work that meets the needs of SEO and addresses the needs of their audience.
- Optimizing Images
Incorporating images in your content helps convey information faster, keep people’s attention by breaking long passages of content, and makes your content more memorable.
However, it is important to note that search engines cannot read images in their raw form. You need to optimize them by using ‘alternative’ text. This is where you give it a unique title and Alt Text that includes the main keywords.
The Alt Text should explain what the image is about briefly and concisely. This is not only an SEO requirement but is also very much helpful to the visually impaired as the content of the image can be read out to them.
- Bullet Points and Bold/Italics
These two elements help create emphasis within your content. For example, you can use bullet points to highlight the main takeaway points, or use bold text to capture the user’s attention and emphasize a given point.
Effectively using them can also help a page land in the much-coveted google’s position zero . This is especially true if the bullet points and bolded text highlight a precise answer to a given question – related to popular search phrases.
However, these elements should be used sparingly otherwise they may end up distracting and irritating the user.
The rules and techniques of writing superb content keep changing to accommodate the needs of users and search engines. Above are among the latest, most effective trends that are now considered a priority if you are to deliver high-quality content. They will play a critical role in dictating how content is created in 2021 and beyond.
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