What Truly Determines Quality Content?

Chad Faith
Chad Faith

Director of Content

What Truly Determines Quality Content?

Big brands, small and medium enterprises, and even individuals are producing an enormous amount of content every minute. Many believe that the key to being successful at Search Engine Optimization and content marketing is by creating quality content. There is some truth to that and you believe that you are also creating quality content. However, you realized that most of your content is still failing. This indicates that your content is getting lost in the noise.

You see, some marketers have the mindset that the effectiveness of a set of content should be based on attributes rather than statistics. They may only consider traits such as overall value, authoritativeness, readability, formatting, spelling, grammar, and length. Unfortunately, not all of these attributes are as accurate as you think. They don’t actually define the quality of content. Let’s find out how quality content can be determined through a collection of phenomenons that can be observed:

Remarkable Click-Through Rates

In the past, Google used machine learning in AdWords. This was before Google decided to use the aforementioned as an organic search ranking signal. If you earn a higher quality score for your AdWords ads, your ad will appear more prominently and you pay less for running it. With that in mind, an extremely important AdWords Quality Score signal to keep in mind, is having a remarkable click-through rate. It indicates that you have created and published high engagement content. Twitter, Facebook, and Google incentivize this type of content. Remember, it isn’t quality content if it doesn’t make lots of people click!

You are Achieving Your Marketing Objectives

One should define the quality of his or her content based on how much one can maximize it. It is not how much money and time you put into it. Imagine you manage a soccer team and need to add a striker to your existing lineup. It doesn’t make sense to sign a new player based on how good looking he or she is or how tall he or she is. No. You want to make sure they have the ability to score goals. The same is true of high quality content. They can look quirky, and be short or long. Heck, they may even contain a couple spelling errors. Ultimately, it is about whether this piece of content achieves its marketing goal, i.e., generating conversions, engagement, rankings, or traffic.

You Found Out that Your Content is Ranking Well in Google

As part of Google’s RankBrain algorithm, machine learning is used on every search. With that in mind, you should know that machine learning systems share a similar trait, which is to reward high engagement. Wasn’t Google SERP positions determined by who had the most relevant content and had the best links? Yes, they are still important ranking factors, but they are not everything Google uses to measure engagement. Today, it is also a combination of how much time people are spending on your content (dwell time) and how many people are clicking on your content (click-through rate).

At the end of the day, it is less about focusing on content attributes, and spending more time and effort to optimize your content for engagement. This helps you gain huge content wins, and ultimately translate into healthy conversions.