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SEO always comes down to content.  You could use the most effective strategies, like link building, solid keyword choices, and using metadata, but if you don’t have anything for all that traffic to look at, you’ve got nothing.  Google has cracked down on link farms and poor quality websites, so it has never been more important to build solid content that will engage visitors.  New figures from SEO research firm, Marketing Sherpa, reaffirms that while content creation is the most time-consuming strategy, it also provides the best return on investment.

According to Market Sherpa’s 2012 SEO benchmark report, “Content creation stands apart in the cluster of tactics, both for its difficulty and for its effectiveness.  Good content creates buzz and attracts links.  For this reason, marketers who commit to the effort required in creating quality content can improve their SEO positions.”

What is good content?  It isn’t copied from other sites, for one thing!  But “good” is relative; it depends on what your audience wants and needs.  In general, though, you need to provide useful, relevant information or something that will entertain or engage your visitors.  Market Sherpa identified several key components, including clear calls to action, clean, easily navigable layouts, and customer-oriented language.  Content can, and should, vary.  Webinars, video, and blogs are all very effective avenues to pursue.

Content creation can be difficult: you need to target it to a specific audience, you need to optimise it, and you need to keep it fresh.  This means that content creation is a never-ending process.  It is time-consuming, but without content, you are not creating a favorable position for yourself.  Searchers may find you – but why would they want to?

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