As the bulk of the written content on your site, well written, informative copy text is the key to SEO success. Not only does it allow search engines to gain a much deeper understanding of what the page and the overall site are about and provide crucial backup for the descriptive keywords used in page titles and headings, but it also opens up the rich potential of long-tail traffic.
Why it matters
As you now know, 70% of Google queries ultimately leading to a sale are driven by multiple word queries from the ‘long tail’ of the distribution. Given that it’s not possible (or necessary) to create a landing page for every possible long-tail keyword. Having 300 words of interesting, informative, and keyword-friendly text can mean a page accesses a cloud of long-tail terms in addition to two or three high-volume targets.
What to do
For body text we recommend:
- Around 300 words of unique static content for each category page.
- Unfortunately re-purposing user generated content for this purpose is likely to do more harm than good. As we believe that multiply duplicated content of this kind is causing serious harm to the site through an algorithmic site quality penalty such as one of the more recent iterations of Farmer/Panda.
- It is vital that the content is unique and well-written. But as there will be a large number of pieces to produce and time savings will be necessary, they should be written with common sense keyword selection rather than a detailed target list.
- Each piece should be written for readers first. Aim to provide useful, expert-level knowledge using good US English style and search traffic for relevant terms will follow.
- As many viewers will see the page on a mobile device, paragraphs should be kept short (say 2-3 sentences rather than 4-5) and the text broken up by at least one subheading. Bulleted or numbered lists can also help make the text easier to read.