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Close the blinds and take the phone off the hook – what I am about to tell you will revolutionise your business.

Time is one of the most precious commodities of the modern day.

As a copywriter, I am constantly asked what exactly it is that I do. I could go on and on about writing web copy, press releases, newsletters, sales letters, reviews, brochures…..dozed off yet? Exactly, it’s not the most glamorous job in the world.

Instead I tell people that by far the most important aspect of my profession is that I save you time.

Whether running your own business or working for someone else, time is important. There are never enough minutes in the day to get everything done. Shall I tell you why? You are trying to do too much.

The key to success is to surround yourself with people smarter than you in their field of expertise. Let go of some of the work so you can generate and explore new ideas. A copywriter will help you with that. Not only will they write cracking copy, they can also use their creativity to help devise new and innovative ideas.

Copywriting is a highly specialised area demanding specific skills, knowledge and a certain type of personality and therefore a position you would want to fill from outside your company. A professional freelance copywriter will bring fresh ideas and create vibrant copy that will get your company noticed. Don’t get bogged down searching for one with experience within your industry sector – ignorance is the most valuable commodity a copywriter can bring. Their writing will not be dull or a regurgitation of your industry norm.

Copywriting isn’t and should not be thought of as another expense. It is an investment. Put your resources into this aspect of your business and you’ll reap the rewards.

Sally Ormond
Briar Copywriting
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Are You Keeping Up With Google?

Posted 19-09-2011 at 10:35 AM by Briar Copywriting

Nothing in life stays the same. Friends change, wrinkles appear and your doctor gets younger and younger.

The same applies in business - you can never remain static.

If you’re into internet marketing you will definitely appreciate that. Google is constantly changing its algorithms. One minute your website could be riding high, the next it could be sinking fast.

But Google doesn’t do it just to be difficult. As a search engine, Google’s number one priority is its users. The constant changes occur to improve the quality of its search results. This is what Google said about the latest change:

“The “Panda” algorithm change has improved rankings for a large number of high-quality websites, so most of you reading have nothing to be concerned about. However, for the sites that may have been affected by Panda we wanted to provide additional guidance on how Google searches for high-quality site. Think about…
• Would you trust the information presented in this article?
• Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it shallower in nature?
• Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations?
• Would you be comfortable giving your credit card information to this site?
• Does this article have spelling, stylistic, or factual errors?
• Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers of the site, or does the site generate content by attempting to guess what might rank well in search engines?
• Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?
• Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?
• How much quality control is done on content?
• Does the article describe both sides of a story?
• Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?
• Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites don’t get as much attention or care?
• Was the article edited well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?
• For a health related query, would you trust information from this site?
• Would you recognize this site as an authoritative source when mentioned by name?
• Does this article provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic?
• Does this article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond obvious?
• Is this the sort of page you’d want to bookmark, share with a friend, or recommend?
• Does this article have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?
• Would you expect to see this article in a printed magazine, encyclopaedia or book?
• Are the articles short, unsubstantial, or otherwise lacking in helpful specifics?
• Are the pages produced with great care and attention to detail vs. less attention to detail?
• Would users complain when they see pages from this site?
(Source: http://googlewebmastercentral.blogsp...h-quality.html)

In essence, if you focus on publishing high quality content that your readers will want to read and share, you should be OK.

7 Pillars of good websites

To sum up, here are 7 tips to help you enjoy great rankings:

1. Make sure your website’s content is aimed at your reader at all times (not the search engines)
2. Your content must focus on quality not quantity
3. The links to your site must be quality links
4. Keep it social – although there is no direct evidence as to how this will help your rankings, Google is now providing real-time social sharing in its search results
5. Don’t duplicate content across websites as Google will only show the most relevant and original content
6. Don’t overdose on advertisements on your website
7. Make sure your title tags and META descriptions tell Google what your site is about (and make them meaningful and not just stuffed with your keywords)

So there you go – make sure you write for your reader and not the search engines.

I think I’ll give Google the last word:

“Our advice for publishers continues to be to focus on delivering the best possible user experience on your websites and not to focus too much on what they think are Google’s current ranking algorithms or signals”
Posted in SEO
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Comments

  1. Old Comment
    Dark Choc Chick's Avatar
    How important is it to keep changing the content of a website. My website has been up for 5 years with one short break where it came down for 3 months. It's now back up but I'm thinking of changing the wording, etc. I don't have ads on my site just information about chocolate and items to buy. How can I improve my back links?

    Good post by the way.
    permalink
    Posted 01-10-2011 at 11:18 AM by Dark Choc Chick Dark Choc Chick is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Briar Copywriting's Avatar
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dark Choc Chick View Comment
    How important is it to keep changing the content of a website. My website has been up for 5 years with one short break where it came down for 3 months. It's now back up but I'm thinking of changing the wording, etc. I don't have ads on my site just information about chocolate and items to buy. How can I improve my back links?

    Good post by the way.
    If your content is working for you (i.e. it's bringing in traffic and converting it into sales), I wouldn't change it.

    But if it's not, take a look at your analytics (I use Google Analytics which is free). See where your traffic is coming from and the words or phrases that's bringing it to you. Are you targeting the right keywords?

    The other thing you need to look at is your web copy. Is it addressing your reader (i.e. using 'you' and 'your' and not 'I' and 'we')? Is it interesting? Is it showing the benefits of your product to your reader? Does each page have a call to action (i.e. call now, contact us today etc.) to enourage your reader to take action?

    Adding fresh content is a must for online marketing so consider (if you don't already have one) a blog. This will help you with your back links too, by using hypertext links in the text of your blog and linking back to your website. But you must make sure your links are relevant. You can also write articles and place them on article websites (e.g. Ezines).

    You should also list your website on as many directories as possible, which are relevant to your industry.

    It sounds a lot of work, but if you break it down and do one or two things a week, you'll soon start to make headway.

    Hope that helps.

    Sally
    permalink
    Posted 14-10-2011 at 11:53 AM by Briar Copywriting Briar Copywriting is offline
  3. Old Comment
    Dark Choc Chick's Avatar
    Hi Sally,

    Many thanks for the sound advice....I will try to implement these ideas. Thank you.

    Christine
    permalink
    Posted 16-10-2011 at 03:32 PM by Dark Choc Chick Dark Choc Chick is offline
 

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