Writing authoritative content for search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most important parts of any internet marketing strategy. Content is the foundation of SEO. Without content, there is very little on your website to optimize, and very little that search engines have by which to evaluate individual websites.
In discussions of how to write effective content for SEO, people often ask what it means for content to be authoritative, and why does it matter?
Authoritative content sounds like it was written by people who know what they’re talking about. Think about how you respond to people who obviously understand what they’re talking about, as opposed to those who are just trying to seem like they know what they’re talking about.
Google wants authoritative content because it’s the most valuable for search users. This means its algorithm is designed to evaluate how valuable the content on a website is. The more valuable and the more factually correct that content is, the better it will be for SEO.
This is important because today’s consumers are more savvy than ever. Even if they’re not familiar with a topic, they can tell when they’re reading something written by a credible, authoritative source, or when they’re reading something by someone who is faking it. If the choice is between two different dealerships they’re considering for their vehicle purchase, guess which one they’re going to buy from?
How can you create content that is more authoritative? Here are five ways.
1. Make your professionalism clear
As the owner of a dealership or someone who works at one, you know plenty about vehicles and about the automotive industry in general.
Rather than writing from a generalized point of view, demonstrate just how authoritative you are by talking about your credentials and your experience. This will help people understand why they should take what you have to say seriously.
2. Create your personal brand
Although you write website content on behalf of your dealership, you have your own personal brand too. This should be a brand of authority. It should clearly demonstrate why you know what you are talking about.
Find your own niche of expertise. For example, you might know everything there is to know about the brand your dealership sells, but know nothing about other brands. By avoiding writing about other brands and only discussing what you know well, you build a personal brand of authority.
3. Use video and images
Providing visual aids to augment your written content will not only make it look more professional, it also helps to underscore concepts that might otherwise be difficult to understand.
4. Cite your sources
When it comes to proving what you write is true—and hence, authoritative—there’s no better way than to cite your sources, and even provide links to other resources that support your point.
This is probably something that you learned to do in school. With internet content, it’s time to break out those citation skills once again. Point to the websites where you got your information, or that explicitly back up what you’ve written.
5. Answer questions when asked
When people disagree with your points or ask questions about them, be available to respond or answer their questions.
This is the ideal way to prove that you, the writer of the content, really know and understand the points made in that content, and that you have additional knowledge about the topic that you can offer, if necessary.
Adam Roseland is the founder of 814 Interactive, a leading digital marketing firm that specializes in automotive SEO. Adam has been working in the advertising industry for the past 10+ years, primarily in the digital space helping local dealers get more ups.0
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