Website Content

Website Content

Creating Website Content:

You have two basic choices for getting content - make it yourself, or find content that others have created. There are some complex issues involving content, so I'll try to proceed through them in an ordered way.

Creating Your Own Content

There is no doubt, that as far as getting search engine traffic, optimizing content for AdSense, and optimizing content for search engines, nothing beats original content. But ONLY if it is well written.

If you have the ability to write well, you are in the ideal position to earn from AdSense, in the best possible way!

Writing your own content takes more time. No question! But it gives you a more solid foundation also, and because it is truly unique, it has the potential to earn better, longer.

Good quality hand written content is helpful, informative, and understandable. It avoids the most common spelling errors, and does not have broken language usage (that is not a condemnation of people who speak a language as a secondary language, just an instruction to them to get a proofreader!).

Good quality writing also has some personality in it. Something to set it apart and make it human. None of this dry, genderless, humorless, emotionless drivel that passes for PLR articles nowdays. Give it some life and identity!

If you cannot write well, then you are better off using content from other writers.

Gathering Pre-Written Content

This is where things get complicated. Because there are a LOT of ways to do this - well, one basic strategy, but a lot of ways to carry it out!

PLR Articles - They are only good for one thing: Providing ideas to a real writer. If you cannot write well, do NOT use these! They WILL be detectible, and they will block your site from making progress. NEVER use these to submit to article directories for marketing, it will come back to bite you!

Do NOT use software that is designed to rewrite these articles. It does NOT produce readable articles! No computer can use language completely naturally, and the end result will be an embarrassment to anyone with a grain of self-respect.

Hand Researching Online Article Databases - This is a valid option. You go and search through article databases to find articles on the topics you want, and then you compile them into a website. The only drawback is the huge amount of time it takes - but it actually does not take any longer than writing your own articles, so you are no worse off, and will be considerably better off if you don't write well! Copying and pasting can be slow though, if you are trying to produce sites fast.

Using Site Builder Software - There are several types of this kind of software, and several ways you can use it.

Most of it allows you to use your own template to plug into the site builder, and then you choose a category or a keyword, and it goes to find the articles from specific databases. The site builder then builds indexes which have a specified number of article summaries and links per page, and then builds a page for each article. Generally. Some of it just builds the pages and a sitemap, no indexes, you have to do those yourself.

There are two basic ways in which these types of software search: By keyword, or by category. Either method has limitations, and may or may not produce relevant pages. I find that in general, if I want to build a successful site, about 10% of the articles returned are actually tightly targeted. The rest would simply distract from the market I wish to target. Of that, only about 1/3 are actually usable, due to quality issues.

There are also three basic ways in which the software retrieves articles:

  • Some of it operates from the software vendor's server. I'd not recommend this kind, they want your FTP login just to demo it. This kind retrieves articles from the article sites live.   
  • Some of it you install onto your server. Now, since some of these pieces of software are made by people who have an ulterior motive, then passed on to people who don't know that, I'd suggest you operate it from an unregistered server (so someone cannot search for it and find it easily). This kind retrieves articles from the active databases online, and builds the site on your server in the folder you specify. You can then move it to the final domain.   
  • The third kind operates from your desktop. Of course, this means you have to download large updates periodically, and the initial software download is MONSTROUS. But it is my favorite type, because I can happily work away whether or not other people's websites (article databases) are functioning properly. It also allows me to preview the articles and sort them BEFORE I build the pages, which is awesome, because it gives me total quality control. I use Article Miner for this.   

Now, you must understand that this kind of software, no matter which type you use, is merely a tool. It cannot build a quality site. You must make some changes by hand to it in order to really earn well from it, and to get good, long term, search engine traffic. Here are the steps I recommend to make it work:\

1. Do NOT use automatic update features! These will put in whatever they gather, regardless of quality, and your site will look tacky.

2. You must quality screen your articles. That means you actually READ them! Some of the articles out there are terrible! They are barely understandable, and you do NOT want them on your site, they'll just make you look bad. When you search based on category or keyword, a lot of the articles are not even relevant to what you really wanted, and targeting your niche is vital in the scope of your content.

3. You MUST have a clear understanding of your topic. If you don't, you'll be posting articles which are harmful to other people. There are a lot of poorly written articles out there, and a lot that really say nothing new. You do not want to end up with 5 articles which say substantially the same thing, when a little attention would give you 5 articles which had a unique perspective to convey. There ARE exceptional articles, and if youwant to be sure that those are the ones you seek out!

4. You must screen the articles for quality of links that are in them. Some sites that are linked into the author resource box are sort of trashy, or they recommend things that are opposed to the message of your site. Also, if an article is nothing but a glorified ad, you want to trash it and not include it - it is not a quality article.

5. The Sitebuilder is a tool to speed you up a bit, not to do the whole job! You need to create your own quality template, or your site won't have the unique and suitable appearance that it needs to have. You'll install special codes where you want the parts of the article to show up - make sure you bold or H1 the title code, right in the template, so that it will save you the trouble of formatting that later.

6. Create your index page, and then create categories as the page links. Replicate that, to create your category link pages. Use either the index pages created by the site, OR the sitemap (you can tell the software to make a sitemap with summaries), and then copy and paste those links onto the appropriate pages so that your site is neatly categorized. This will set your site apart from the rest. Otherwise, you get a long list of jumbled articles, in no particular order, that go page after page, with no reason for your visitor to believe that they'll find what they want if they click to the next page of links. Organize it smart like this, and you'll get people who will stay on your site for a bit, who will use an "open in new window" command for the Googles (because they want to see more of what you have), and who will bookmark and come back to see your site again.

7. When you create your template, put in a box, or a specific area in your site where you can put comments. After the site is built, go through and enter comments about each article. If you write badly, please have someone edit them. One medium sized paragraph, or two short ones is enough, though you can put more than that if you have it to say. This is very important, because it means that your site is not just someone else's content, it is UNIQUE, which search engines index higher for. This one small thing is worth the effort, because it gives you back all the advantages of writing your own content (keywords, uniqueness, personality, expertise, etc), while only having to produce a small amount.

8. These kinds of programs always create a page filename out of the title, so they come out very cumbersome. And recognizable. Ideally, it is best to change the filenames and the links to them, but your site will most likely do ok without that. If you get a replicated site that was made in that kind of program though, it is ESSENTIAL that you change the filenames and links!

9. You'll want to make sure that you install a page title tag, and keyword and description metatags into your template. Do NOT let the program automatically generate them! You can go ahead and upload your site, and then later come back and customize those tags for each individual page to help to optimize it.

Sounds like a lot of work, huh? And it IS. But it allows you to produce a 100 page site in the time it takes to produce the average 25 page site. And if you use Article Miner, it is even better, because it allows you to sort through a vast number of articles for just the ones you need, much faster than you could ever do online. Now THAT is a huge time saver!

I built two article sites using content from other authors, with comments on the pages. Both sites were substantially the same in number of pages.

For the first site, I sorted through piles of articles that I already had on my hard drive. Then I built the site template, replicated the pages, and added content to the pages by copying and pasting and formatting them one by one. It took me about 5 days of intensive work to build a site that had just over 100 pages, and that was AFTER I spent about 3 days sorting through articles! Transferring all the articles into the site pages was tedious - I ended up just dreading having to go back to it each time I took a break!

For the second site, I used Article Miner. This was the first time I used it, and had to figure out some things, so I actually ended up building the site about 4 times before I got the template exactly right. I still had to create the index page, and the category pages, and reorganize all the page links within the categories. I also still had to personally write the comments for each page. It took about 3 days, start to finish, to build that site (including sorting the articles!), with approximately the same number of pages, and what's more, I did not end up feeling burnt out while building it! I did not change the filenames, I left them as they were.

The two sites are of equivalent quality. The difference is, Article Miner helped me sort the articles and build the site in the same time it took me to just sort the articles with the other site. I saved FIVE DAYS of tedious work! No, it did not do it all for me, and I still had to do a lot of work, but it was so much faster, I consider that the software was more than worth it's price at $147.

I have used one other kind, and it seems to do the job adequately, though it is the type you install on a server. It is half the price of Article Miner though ( Look for Article Site Builder on our Downloads Page), and for its price, it does justify the expense fully in the time it can save you. Just remember the rules about it, and customize the pages properly, and sort the articles once it gets them - remove the links to the unacceptable articles and trash those pages.

The last place you can get content for AdSense Sites is through Feeds.

Feeds have the following advantages:

  • They are easy, once installed they do their job of updating your site regularly.   
  • You can target them to specific topics.   

They have the following disadvantages"

  • You cannot do anything automatically as well as you can do it personally, and the search engines recognize this. A page with nothing more than feeds will not get good hits.   
  • People don't like pages that are nothing but feeds either. They don't stick around if your site looks "lazy".   
  • If you have feeds on your site as the content, you already have one "out" from the site, because in order to see the whole thing, they have to click THAT link. When you have regular content, people read it, and when they are done and have no place better to go, they click and ad. When you have feeds, if your content interests them, they will click THAT, and your site is gone, no income.   
  • They are not a total solution to content. You must have something unique, or the search engines will rate the quality of your content as worthless. One or at most two feeds on your site can be an enhancement to your offerings, more than that is a crutch that makes your site crippled in its ability to compete.   
  • You don't control what is on your site, someone else does. Unless you have screened your sources carefully, you cannot guarantee that the information provided will send the message that you want it to send! Me, I don't really like the idea of turning part of my site over for someone else to determine the content of.   

Feeds can help somewhat, if you want something to bring people back, but remember, if your visitors use the feeds, they will be less likely to use the Ads.

There are many other issues regarding content, where AdSense is concerned. They are covered in the Duplicate Content section, and in the Content Optimization section. There is also more information on Content in the Article Library.

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