Content Quality: Too Little? Too Similar? How Do You Know?

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Content Quality: Too little? Too Similar? How do you know?

7th July 2016ElizabethElizabeth

Why does content quality matter?

In short, because your SEO depends on it. And, ultimately, so do your customers.

In fact, website content is about quality and quantity, and you can be sure that Google knows whether yours is up to standards or not. When a search engine crawls your website, it’s not just assessing whether your page is compliant or non-compliant; it’s also assessing the content of your page and how well it relates to a searcher’s potential query. Google won’t serve their users search results with thin content that doesn’t answer their question or meet their needs.

In a Search Engine’s eyes, they want to ensure that they’re evaluating and delivering high-quality content to each search query a user makes.

What makes content high- or low-quality?

Quality content is key to SEO success, with every Google algorithm update underlining this point and penalizing further when a site isn’t up to snuff. Your place in search results depends on Google’s (and other search engines’) ability to scan your site and determine that your pages are good enough to serve to their querying users.

No customer wants to spend time on a site with low-quality content, and Google keeps that in mind in determining your placement in results and overall site value. High quality content means positive site perception by both bots and customers.

What factors might affect my content quality?

  • Volume of words on the page
  • Percentage of text in template
  • Similarity to other pages

First and foremost, the amount of text on a page is a key indicator of content quality. As any good SEO specialist knows, having very little, thin content on a given page offers little hope of driving organic traffic. What works for your site will naturally depend on your industry and the purpose of a given page. A publishing site will have much higher word count standards, aiming for anything from a few hundred to a few thousand words per page, compared to an e-commerce site which may target a minimum of 250 words per page.

This word count, however, requires the separation of template text from unique page content. Your page’s header, footer, menus, etc. that are common across multiple pages or page types do not count in your content volume. If all that remains when you remove the template is thin content, the page isn’t doing you any good.

When your content is long enough and your template isn’t overwhelming your page, what’s left to think about? The uniqueness of your content – not just from other sites across the web, but within your own site. Uniqueness is a quality indicator used by search engines to assess the perceived value of a page added to the overall site and user experience. How similar is another page? What percentage of your content is duplicated elsewhere? Content similarities can be subtle – and damaging. Each page of content should offer its own value, not to be repeated across dozens of pages.

How do you analyze content quality?

With just a few pages, small sites may think they have their hands full with ensuring their content is lengthy and fresh. But, when your site’s page count climbs into the triple or quadruple digits, it can be nearly impossible to know off-hand whether your content is long enough on each page, or if it’s unique from every other page.

So then, with a large site containing hundreds, thousands, or even millions of pages… how do you know how search engines are measuring your content quality?

Content Quality Analysis

The solution is, of course, a technical one. What better way to see how a search engine would perceive your site than to scan it like a bot? Botify’s Content Quality Analysis allows you to score all areas of your website on all measures of content quality.

Identify low-quality content based on robots’ assessment metrics including:

  • Content length
  • Similar or duplicate content
  • Template weight
  • Quality metrics by page type

You can even monitor changes over time, to keep an eye on how much of a page’s content has changed, whether the template or the core content was changed, increases in unique content, and changes to content overlaps.

How does your website measure up to content quality metrics? Find out!

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