Archive for content

Why Your Site Needs a Writer for Great Content

SonFisher has created a great-looking website for you and even provided you with some guidance about critical content it should have, such as About Us and Contact pages (see Kerry’s 4/7/2020 blog on this.)

Writing is a challenge for many people. It’s one thing to write a product description or explain what a WordPress hook does, but something personal like an About Us page or even a FAQ can take more time than you might care to spend. For one thing, you probably know so much about your business that it’s hard for you to find words a layperson can understand, especially if your service or products are a technical nature.

Writing can be frustrating

Does writing frustrate you?

What should you do? Hire a writer, of course!

Writers Provide Technical Services You Need

A professional writer provides technical services for you in the form of written content and perhaps strategy as well.

 A good writer will research your business and at a minimum, review your website to gain and understanding of how you help your clients/customers. They may interview you to gain unique insights and in effect, put themselves in your shoes as best they can based on the information you provide.

I try to speak to my clients by phone or videoconference. If it doesn’t work because of time zone issues (I’ve written for clients in Australia and South Africa) then email will have to do. In those cases, I send specific questions and encourage clients to just type out their thoughts to me. My job as a writer is to use those thoughts to create content to attract potential customers. I don’t want complete sentences or anything – just information, however raw, that will help me help them.

And believe it or not, I really enjoy doing this. We writers like this line of work!

Writing to Boost SEO

Good writers are also aware of how website software works. I’m a WordPress user myself, which has trained me to think about SEO a lot.

In addition to using keywords while keeping the natural tone and flow Google and other search engines like best, I also understand how to use metadata to further boost site content. So if you give me access to your site, I’ll take the time to add photo captions, insert alt content, and create snippets and page summaries.

Do You Like Writing?

Let’s say you’re one of us – you like to write. That’s great! And by no means would I ever discourage someone from writing their own content.

Still, it won’t hurt to get a second pair of eyes to look over your content. I know from experience it’s difficult to edit your own work. Most people write in a passive because that’s how we speak. Active writing, though, works better when you write for the web.

Writing for the web also means structuring content so that it’s easy to skim if it’s technical or you work in the B2B arena. If your focus is retail or more B2C, content should be easy read on a smartphone where customers are more likely to find your business.

Moreover, that second pair of eyes can give you ideas on how to repurpose your content.

  • Web page content can be used in blogs to further expand on an idea or service
  • Blogs can be used for e-newsletter topics
  • Page and blog content can be used for video scripts, social media messaging, and infographics

Web Content Should Be Regularly Refreshed

You might have good content on your site, but is it current? Have you added new services that aren’t reflected or emphasized on your site? Does it read like last year’s carefree, mask-less lifestyle?

Writers will notice typos, outdated expressions, uneven spaces, and other minor items that added up, can make a site read like an old but still useful brochure. If you’re updating your site design, this is an excellent time to hire a writer to review and refresh your content.

Ruth Ann Monti leads the writing service TimeStorm Communications LLC.

Stock Photos; Finding Royalty-Free Images

Reading Time: 2 minutes

We get questions about stock photos from our clients quite often. When it comes to photos for your website – especially content marketing, blogging and social media – you need that extra visual punch. But stock photo services are expensive for start-ups and small businesses. I regularly advise my customers to use free stock photo websites to keep these costs down, whenever possible.

But turning to Google Image Search for photos won’t cut it. The search engine doesn’t allow you to view user agreements and can trip you up if you go this route. Copyright and license infringement is no joke and can bring hefty fines.

You might think, “It’s just a photo!” However, digital products are big business today. Photo supplier, Getty Images has, “an archive of 80 million still images and illustrations” according to Wikipedia and they are known for their feverish pursuit to enforce their licenses. To avoid legal headaches, here are some simple steps to ensure your business is protected.

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Reputation Management vs. Credibility Monitoring — What’s the Difference?

You’ve probably heard of reputation management or monitoring. Many online companies offer these somewhat questionable services to help individuals and brands repair their good name online. From bad reviews to social media trolls, keeping your brand’s credibility clean can become time consuming.

Wikipedia breaks down the practice like this:

“Reputation management refers to influencing and controlling an individual’s or business’s reputation. Originally a public relations term, the expansion of the internet and social media, along with reputation management companies, have made it primarily an issue of search results.”

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Why Web Content Matters

There’s more to a website than just design. For a website to be a successful marketing tool to business owners, it needs to go beyond the placeholder status. You need content. Valuable web content.

Let’s look at your site from another perspective; every visitor seeks out a website with a question in mind. Maybe they’re looking for location or contact information. Your visitor could be looking for details about a product or service and want to verify that you can get the job done for them. Or, they could be looking for an expert. We call them web authorities, offering tips, guides and vast amounts of knowledge that keep readers engaged and visiting your site over and over. If you don’t have incredible web content, you may lose traffic and potential sales.

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Is a Multi-language Website for You? Why or Why not?

Of course, the question to have a multi-language website depends upon a few key decisions. Stop to consider the community of people attracted to or interested in your services, products or goals. Do they all speak English? Do they only speak another language? Perhaps their first language is Spanish and they speak some English.

For the sake of discussion, let’s say that portions of your audience fit into each of these situations and call them your multi-language audience. Before discussing how you might accommodate them, look at your resources. Do you have full-time, multi-lingual staff? Are there English speakers and those that speak French? If your staff reflects your multi-language audience, that’s great!

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What are the Essentials of a Successful Website?

Have you ever been faced with composing a work document, only to hit writer’s block before you begin? Big projects can be hard to start and creating a website is no different. Many of the “big brands” make owning a website appear effortless, but there is a bit of planning that goes into web design – even simple business websites.

When considering how to create a successful website for your small business, we break down the essential “must have” list for starting a successful website.

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