How To Build Content Rich Site

Building content rich website is a gradual and an ever evolving process. Content works at two levels; at information level & at impact level. To sync the two, it takes a fine understanding. If what you write fails to get a reaction from the reader, it's of little value. Learning to develop content is a vast topic. I'll share primary information through this post, hoping that once you get a hang of the subject, you will pave your way through the maze.

If you want to write content for your website or a blog, let these three things be in place. Be disciplined, keep your site up-to-date, and learn to create content, (or know where & how you can find it). Read further to understand how we can achieve all three.

Self Discipline and Focus:

Be Focused: The first rule is to use your time well. I.e. while gathering information keep your 100% focus on the topic at hand, without letting anything distract you. Stick to the sites that are directly related to your core topic so that you don't end up spending time on a site you are not meant to.

Be Disciplined: Write something every day. Make a time table & stick to it.

Keep Your Site Up-to-Date:

There is nothing more life-less than a stale site. Adding fresh content not only encourages frequent spider visits, or gives you a competitive edge, it also encourages visitors to return in the hope of finding something more interesting in their next visit.

How to Get Content:

Before starting content building (a) know your customer, (b) understand your business. Once you know what your customer needs, you will understand which format or type of content will work best.

Types of Content

Content can be divided into various types. Editorials, Feature articles, News or stories, Art galleries, Reviews, Announcements, Interviews, Interactive features – survey, opinion, user groups, forums, chat format and so on.

Different formats work in different environments depending on product/customer profile, competition etc.

Editorial: This is a platform where a specialist or an expert takes a topic where he shares his/her personal opinion. Editorials invite response for and against the post, and this generally takes shape of an interesting discussion. Varied contributions add new angles and fresh perspective to the original discussion.

Website owners can either write their own editorials from time to time or promote a section where they can invite guest posts. It won't only build content on a site but will also prompt contributors and visitors come back for more fodder & new replies. It's a good idea for sites looking at building community of their own

Some interesting editorials can also go viral, and earn reviews, recommendations for the author, and traffic for the site where it is published. Plus, these feed-backs can be a source of information and can bring new ideas to the table for future posts or a sequel.

Pillar Posts or Full Length Quality Articles:

This is the most common, preferred, and powerful type of content. Full length articles or posts can be created in various formats and tones depending on how your target audience would like it served. The articles can be formal or friendly, light or technical, long or short. While creating this kind of content the writer needs to keep a few things in mind:

Your Focus Should Be: Don't get off the topic, sound relevant, and mean business.

How to do it: Watch every line that you create. Every line should prompt the reader to read the next. The best way to get here is by projecting one idea per paragraph. The paragraph should not exceed two or at the most three medium length sentences.

If your Ideas sound fresh, innovative and interesting, it will add value to your site's credibility and also consolidate your position as a writer. Stale concept or dull presentation failing to excite the reader will impact your site's reputation adversely.

Article Length: Don't make the articles too lengthy. Stick to a word limit of 1100 words to be safe. If you can't accommodate it within the word limit then either divide the article into two parts or then make it into a series of several short features. Make sure that you don't lose the grip over your visitor.

Where & How Can You Get Articles For Your Site: You can get them in several ways.

Create Your Own Article: The easiest, cheapest, and best option is to create your own feature articles. You can learn to be an effective online writer if you have done some writing earlier and are willing to learn some new skills, you should be able to do it.

Look For a Writer: If you aren't cut out for the craft, or lack the time, temperament and inclination to write your own content then one of the options you have is to arrange for a writer to write for your site on mutually beneficial terms.

(a)Pay / Request Experts to Write: You can get content for your site by requesting experts to write guest posts for money.

b.)Exchange articles: If you don't want to spend you can get into an arrangement with another website owner and exchange content. It will benefit you provided the other site belongs to the same niche and their standing in SE is as good, or better than yours.

This option gives your existing visitors exposure to a new point of view, and secondly, there is a chance that you might attract visitors from the website owner who has written for you!

c.) Hire Writers: If you hire writers they will write content that will be unique and exclusive to your site. Just make sure you choose a proficient & qualified person for the job. Exclusive content offers benefits like syndication opportunities in different publications, customer loyalty, good ranking in SE etc.

(d) Publish Content Written By Other Authors with Their Credit Line

These are called reprint articles. They are written by various authors and can be found everywhere free to be used post permission provided you agree to give due credit for using his content on your site by publishing active link of his site or blog with his preferred anchor text at the bottom on article.

Add Your Own Flavur with an Original Twist to the Writers Tale:

Reprinting content is amongst the most common options used by website owners to publish content on their sites. As a savvy marketer you can add your own view and make the reprint sound fresh and more interesting. You could write a prologue, or conclude with your personal point of view.

Two Tips: First don't use articles that have been used many times earlier and secondly, while incorporating your own take on the article, ensure that you aren't touching the original version in any case, unless you have the author's permission to do so.

(3) News Based Site or a News Section On Your Site – Whatever Works For You

If your product requires regular updates, incorporate news section on your site where you can post content, and others can contribute too by responding or creating fresh posts etc.

If topic of your site is such that it requires regular news updates, you can format and project the entire site as news backed website. Seek expert opinion before pursuing it.

If you can manage to publish latest developments and news on your site regularly you can become a source of information for readers. This will not only help you retain existing readers but also earn you reviews, recommendations, followers, & new readers from all over.

News Formats You Can Use:

With such sites news needn't always flow in a fixed format as it will make the site unexciting for readers. You can make the news flow in several formats like feature article, or short news clips etc, with a live link leading the reader to another page to read the complete story. Then some news items can follow the regular format of news stories, where the entire sequence is explained at length in one go on the same page.

Two More Tips: In whichever way that you decide to present the news ensure that it brings out your unique personality and point of view. Secondly, unless the news is relevant, useful, and published timely no matter which style of writing or formats you use, stale always fails.

How to Collect News:

There is no dearth of information. A lot of resources are there that can help you keep track of new stories and developments in your niche that you can feature on your site/blog. You can subscribe to eZines, News Providers, & Press Releases in your niche. Spend time researching for hard or cracking news and new angles through newspapers, magazines, Internet, doing workshops, conferences, seminars etc.

Advantage of Keeping Your News Site Up To Date:

If you will take the effort to keep your site up to date with information and active idea exchange by visitors your Website can become an ultimate content resource in your niche, and will help you to attract and retain potential and organic audience. People will visit and recommend your site to anyone seeking information in your niche.

Websites That Offer Pictures, Music, Downloads – The New Normal Content

If nature of your site is such that it calls for wider interaction or exchange of ideas using various mediums (you are distributing free images, music, movie clips, etc), you will look past text.

Text does not hold exclusive right to what is accepted as content. Music, Images, videos etc have been accepted as advanced form of content. Or content convertible, because they can be converted into readable stuff just as content.

If mediums like Photographs, Videos, Audios, Downloads etc can make your site more attractive, sought after, followed, popular, authoritative and so on, you should consider incorporating this form of content, albeit under professional supervision.

Internet Connectivity Glitches: Thing of the Past

Gone are the times when we would worry over issues like internet connectivity because its quality is improving by the day. We are ordering stuff online, our websites are becoming mobile compatible and we are doing product research on our cell phones.

The day does not look too far when majority of Websites will go under transformation and become more interactive and dynamic as content models.

Review Website

If your website is selling products & services in a certain niche, Review Format will go down well with the customer appetite. Your site could be about anything, books, travel, entertainment, movies etc and so you could be writing or inviting reviews in any field directly or indirectly related to the niche, including Local restaurants, resorts, to artwork, web designers etc. The more a reader can relate with what you have written, better are the chances that he will keep coming back for more and see you as a credible and trustworthy resource.

If your product review site is a well planned and executed effort, it will bring a stream of visitors both old and new during all seasons and at oddest of hours to you. Review sites come closest to the phrase, "Your Site Will Work for You Even While You Sleep"

Techniques to Follow While Writing Reviews

Choose Standard Products: Make sure you choose the right products to review, products that are in demand for their utility and quality. This will create your website's first impression and reputation.

Weave it Tight: Your reviews should be tightly weaved, should be relevant, focus on the topic, and offer information with minimal frills. Instead of sounding like an advertisement, reviews should mean business and offer a balanced view by experts as well as users.

Give Contact Info: Always make contact/ordering information part of the review, even if it's your first review, and you are just starting out and not expecting any traffic for some time

Conclude it With Reference: While concluding the review, voice your personal opinion as to how have you found the product and whether you think the reader should make the effort to visit the website and order product or not.

What Should You Review On Your Website? You should review products and services relevant to your site's core topic, and something that the visitor would like to have information about. For example, you can review quality books, websites and products in your niche.

Incorporate Announcements Section on Your Site

If your sells concepts, information, or products that need recurring announcements to share with your visitors, announcement content makes a lot of sense. Announcements will work in many situations like,

If you organize workshops etc through your site, you can share updates here with the audience.

Likewise, if you have developed a new product, improved the previous product, come up with something innovative, opened a new branch you can announce it in this section.

If you have exclusive industry information you can share it before others in this column. This works especially well if your website is about celebrities etc.

The announcement sections make the visitors curious and prompt them to visit the page. So if you have created an announcement page/section keep it updated and looking fresh and new. It is a general tendency of people to feel a sense of comfort in keeping up with the latest happenings. And if you can feed them with it, you are here to stay.

Will Interview Format Serve Your Audience Well?

Interviews make for a very interesting reading and content on a site. Your entire site can be interview based of you can incorporate an exclusive section in your site where readers can read interviews of different people related to your field.

Steps & Techniques That Will Make Your Interviews Stand Out:

Doing an interview requires is permission. Most people would be happy to comply, because of the additional exposure that interviews can bring them. If the website it is going to be published on is of very poor standard or standing, then chances are that the guest may refuse to be seen there. Otherwise it's simple.

Once permission is through you can interview the person via email or over the phone.

Choose Your Interviewee Wisely: Always choose the guest carefully and consciously. His expertise or contribution should be directly related to your website's central theme. This will make your visitors instantly click with the site. To make the interview interesting incorporate the human interest angles in the interview.

Identify Human Interest Questions: Make the expert or guest talk about his struggles and stumbling blocks and what he did to overcome them; his failures, achievements & lessons etc.

Start or Conclude With Your Personal Opinion: Conclude or start with a paragraph that reflects your guest's social standing and your reasons for choosing him for the interview.

Topic should be decided in advance and so should be the set of questions. If need be send them to the interviewee beforehand. Some guests may also want to read the final version of the interview before it is published. I see nothing wrong with it.

Actually it only means a few more opportunities to interact with the expert, and you should welcome it, because if he is happy with your style of working he may recommend you to other experts and thus you can widen the network of people you want to be seen with.

Interactive Content

Content that encourages and welcomes readers to take the discussion forward by replying, arguing, and counter-arguing is content that builds communities, brings people close to you, and helps you understand each other better.

There are many different ways in which you can do it. You can write about topics like, your opinion or specific issues and ask them for theirs. You can state your preferences and ask them about theirs, you can request their feedback on product, software you've created, you can present and share data using info graphics etc and invite their take on it.

All this can add fresh and original flow of content to your site day after day, if you have an active community of followers on your site. If you don't, there is no better way to begin than content building. Community building may take time but once people start coming together, your will be on your way up.

How to Make Your Site Interactive

Conduct Opinion Polls, Invite Feedbacks, Create Forums, Discussion Boards, Chatrooms

You can put questions before your readers regarding any relevant topic and ask them to cast their vote in favor of or against it which will help you to prepare and present reports. Likewise you can write an article, initiate debate on a controversial or current issue, asking readers to participate.

You can also ask your readers to take surveys or share their suggestions to improve the site, situation etc. Opinion polls not only encourage community building and interactive sessions but they also help you lay a foundation for a solid reputation online. Depending on your initiatives you can be perceived as an authority or an expert in the field.

Techniques To Use:

Keep 'em Short: Keep your surveys / polls short keeping attention span of online reader in mind.

Short Answers : Identify questions that can be answered in yes or no instead of expecting reader to write a descriptive or detailed answer.

Offer Incentives: Offer an incentive for participating in the survey. It could be anything from a free eBook to a trial pre-subscription membership and so on.

How to Take Dual Advanage of the Reader's Contribution?

When you do a survey or take a poll where you have invited reader participation, never make the blunders like leaving the ends loose untied, or forgetting to include Contact Details in the post or poll.

Invite feedback, provide address, thank and acknowledge their response, and finally complete the circle by submitting a report on what was the result of the Poll or what did you conclude from the survey.

Let readers know that their participation meant a lot to you. This will bring you additional recommendations, especially from fellow participants. It will also improve your credibility and positioning amongst your followers.

Irrespective of whether the reader's participation is for or against the topic, you will stand to gain. While some contributions will help you to find answers you were looking for, others may give you a deeper insight and understanding of the human behaviour and their needs. And above all fodder in the form of ideas to create more relevant and useful content.

When you create new article or bring improvement on your site, poll, or post based on leads provided to you by the readers, give them a special mention and credit for it in the article. It will work in your favour.

Discussion Boards

Unlike polls or surveys that comprise one to one interaction discussion boards call for group participation where several like-minded or interested people are exchanging ideas from a common platform.

How to Initiate Discussion Board:

Build groups via endless avenues available like social media, inviting contacts from other forums where you are active and member etc.

Invite people to join your discussion board by making announcements on your site or blog etc.

The substance you can generate from such live-wire environment can give you new ideas and encouragement to create more content.

Start Forums & Chat rooms

Forums are as exclusive as they are part of website. These are like bulletin boards on a Website where a visitor is bound to spend time if its developed well. This is the pace where visitor can read replies of other visitors or voice their own opinion.

This ongoing communication prompts and leads to more dense discussions.

Both forum and chat-room discussions give rise to more content, more interesting and worthwhile content because central content idea is based on reader feedback.

What Can the Discussions be About:

Well, anything, Latest post, workshop, an interview on your own blog or website or somebody's else's as long as the niche is relevant, you will not break a reader's heart. Vague discussions will kill the purpose of website so always ensure your discussions stick to the niche.

The layout, transcripts, font, content flow, along with Admin intervention plays a very important role in keeping the discussion within format.


Finally, How Can You Get Content For Your Blog or Website?
You have four alternatives and they are:
Write it yourself
Invite Guests to contribute
Pay and Hire professional web copywriters or content writes
Syndicating content from elsewhere or licensing it

Can You Create Your Own Content?

Sure! If you have the skill to write online or are willing to learn it, have the time for it, you sure can. But if you'd rather focus on your main business and leave content writing to the professional you can go ahead and hire one. It's for you take the call. But don't worry too much as there is something for each one of us and our pockets on the net.

Inviting Contributions: This option is for people who neither wish to pay for writer at this point and nor can write their own stuff. They can put up an announcement on their site inviting people to participate. But here, site owners will have the additional job of keeping a watch on the quality and originality of content getting published. It requires time as well as expertise.

Hiring Content Providers

This requires both - money and focus. If you have decided to spend on building your business you better not take it lightly. There are many ways to hire content providers. You can hire them part time or full time if you have several websites, you can enter into hourly contract with them, some are also willing to charge per assignment and so on.

Hiring content writers is an expensive proposition but it's better than not adding any value by writing your own content without any knowledge and experience of writing online.

Syndicating or Licensing Content

If you want to explore this model, it's not a bad idea at all. You can get quality content developed by experts at reasonable cost. This kind of content is available for use for a specified time period, against a payment of what is called licensing fee.

There are many places you can syndicate or license your content from, like News services for breaking news, brief flashes, and updates on relevant topics

You can get in touch with Content Aggregators who collate info on your niche topic from across the Web, you can try magazines and newspapers, leading and sought after portal sites in your niche category etc

Some General Tips for Website Content

Be yourself, if readers find you fibbing or too good to be true they will leave never to return. And remember the reader today has evolved, he knows how and what he wants and his intuitions are very sharp and which help him to identify good from bad content

Last Bit of Tips:

Clear headlines and paragraphs preferably staring with sub-titles
One paragraph for every new idea
Para needn't exceed 3 sentences.
Sentences to be short
Include local lingo and phrases - wisely and subtly
Difficult words, complex phrases, multiple syllables – no, no!
Get straight to the point
Reader will also judge you on grammar, spelling, composition etc


This will depend on the topic of website. But finally reader should identify with it. Which means identify your reader first, know him then things will come easy.

Don't be Scared to Take Unthreaded Paths

If you will do what most others are doing, you will never get where you want to be. So always be open to experimenting with new ideas. You will evolve and be able to create an identity for yourself provided you dare to try unique things.

Do it smartly. Closely watch the consequences of the new steps you've taken and notice if it is impacting user-behaviour. After assessing it for a few weeks, take the next step, whether it about adding something new or scrapping and replacing it with a better idea. But never do only what's prescribed in text book. That's not what internet and its success is about. It's a world where innovation, new, and fresh flourish. So do it, while you still can and take your best foot forward.

Does Length of Content Impact Its Readability?


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