Search engines use many different factors to rank websites. Google has stated they use over 200 factors. Although there are many different actions that website owners may take to help boost their website's search engine ranking, the area website owners should concentrate most is building great content.

Content is King

Website visitors will visit and spend more time on websites with great content. Great content will be shared via social media. Other website owners will link to great content. Search engines will see all of these activities, and will usually reward top rankings to websites with great content.

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"Great content has to be the foundation of any good site..."

Matt Cutts for Google Webmasters

What is Great Content?

Search engines are looking for original, fresh content.

Original Content

Original content is not duplicated on the creator's website or on other websites. Duplicating the same content on a single website may be seen by search engines as an underhanded method to influence search engines.

When duplicate content occurs on multiple websites, Google may choose to show only one copy. If Google classifies duplicate content as spam (for example one website copying another website's RSS feed automatically without adding any value), the spam website may receive large ranking penalties.

Google's views on duplicate content:
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Content Length

A popular question regarding content is content length requirements. Many articles theorize that good content should contain 200 - 300 words, and this is probably a good guideline for most cases. One of the key components of great content is uniqueness; however, so in certain cases, a single line of content (such as a tweet) could rank well.

Fresh Content

In addition to original content, search engines are also looking for fresh, updated content. A website which is frequently updated is probably going to draw more visitors, and thus rank well with search engines. Conversely, websites which have not been updated in years may drop in rankings since old information may lose relevance or usefulness over time.

Creating Great Content for Websites

Although most websites are unique, opportunities usually exist to create great content, hopefully resulting in higher rankings within search engines. Any website can benefit from a blog or news section which contains relevant original, fresh content. A forum is also another option; however, a forum's content may be less relevant, and forums generally require consistent maintenance against spam.

E-commerce websites are typically known for thin, unoriginal content, but those conditions are ideal for an e-commerce website with great content to rank well. One tip for e-commerce websites is to use new, original content for product copy. Many e-commerce websites use the same product copy provided by the products' manufacturer. Creating new, original product copy may help rank above other websites that are duplicating content.

Need help creating great content for your website?

Waypoint Web Design has experience creating original, fresh content for all types of websites.

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