Five ways to become a more efficient web writer

User engagement is everything these days. To impress search engines like Google and to keep users on your site, your content needs to be both fresh and relevant. In other words, you have to write often and you have to write well. The thought of accomplishing both scares some people, so I’d like to share a few tips on how to write efficiently and effectively (in random order).

Keep your language plain and simple

The United States government recently announced a new mandate demanding that federal agencies toss the jargon out the window and write in “plain language” so that bills and rulings become more accessible to average citizens. While I don’t see the Harper government making a similar decision in Canada any time soon, I see an opportunity for businesses to follow suit here. And that includes any content development company, search engine optimization firm or, really, any business that deploys SEO. Note that [...]

What’s in a title? A lot, actually

And you thought mattress tags mattered. Sure, mattress tags are important. So important that we’re afraid we’ll go to jail if we remove them. But any web copywriting enterprise or expert will tell you that some other tags – title tags and meta tags – are infinitely more important. So much of search engine optimization boils down to the same crucial principle: making sure searchers can find your site in the first place, preferably on the first page of Google and other search [...]

In Praise Of Plain Language

What is plain language? Plain language or plain English is understood by a reader the first time they read it, allowing writing for a more specific audience. The three main goals of plain language are that the reader will find what they need, understand that information quickly, and then use that information to meet their needs. Clear and concise writing is however a little bit more than short sentences, simple words and logical organization as you will see down below. Why [...]

The Irony: Great Content, Low Rankings

There are many aspects of search engine optimization (SEO) and page ranking that are not directly impacted by the content of a website itself. So if you’ve got great content but still have a low search engine ranking, there might be a few more things left to take care of. What is a page ranking? Page rankings are numerical values that depict how important a page is in the eyes of Google. The mathematical algorithm used to determine these rankings [...]

How to Add Fresh, New Web Content

Fresh.dot vs. Neglect.dot: How to Add Fresh, New Web Content Adding fresh, new, relevant content to websites helps draw traffic. Compare a website with fresh, new additions to a stale, neglected website. Then see how to add fresh content. Many websites are created, launched, and… nothing. Their owners and makers leave the websites alone to wither and die. Let’s call these owners and makers “Neglect.dot.” What does Neglect.dot do? Neglect.dot acts as though… •    websites simply, magically draw visitors •    Neglect.dot can tick “website” [...]

Local Search Engine Optimization

Local search engine optimization Local Search Engine Optimization is critical for businesses that want to attract local search engine traffic and local customers online. What is local search? Finding an authoritative definition for the term ‘local search’ is challenging.  A loose definition could be ‘local businesses run by locals for locals’.  Put simply, let’s call a ‘local business’ one that’s in reasonable driving distance of where you live. Why is local search engine optimization important? A 2006 report conducted by Nielsen/NetRatings and WebVisible titled, [...]

Google’s Local Search

GOOGLE LOCAL SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION For those unfamiliar with ‘Google’s Local Business Centre’, this article will provide you with a basis for using it in order to reach local consumers while generating more qualified leads. GOOGLE LOCAL SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION – HOW TO Before getting into the nuts & bolts of  ‘Google’s Local Search Platform’, it’s important to know the different types of search results that may appear on a Google search query; namely: 1. Sponsored Links 2. Local Business Results 3. Organic Search Results 1. Sponsored Links (also known [...]

How to Become a Professional Web Writer

Wikipedia.org defines the term professional as, “An occupation, vocation or career where specialized knowledge of a subject, field, or science is applied. It is usually applied to occupations that involve prolonged academic training and a formal qualification.” Although ‘specialized knowledge’ is required to become a ‘professional web writer,’ there are no well recognized governing bodies that bestow such an accreditation. One can take courses – mostly online – that are offered by web writers and self-proclaimed gurus; but again, none of [...]

Using and Optimizing HTML Title Tags

Using and Optimizing HTML Title Tags for Search An HTML Title Tag is a snippet (short text preview) of HTML that provides details about a web page:  It is primarily used by Search Engines for indexing and displaying sites in SERP’s (search engine result pages).  Title Tags help search engines and searchers determine the nature, importance and relevance of your web pages. For search engines, title tags are the most important piece of text on your website and usually the first [...]