Here are 28 types of website content that search engines like Google and social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram all love.
Table of Contents
- 1. Data Driven Content
- 2. Infographic
- 3. Top 50 list
- 4. Curated content
- 5. Step-by-step instructions
- 6. Recipes
- 7. Case studies
- 8. Before and after examples
- 10. Stories
- 11. Documenting
- 12. Testimonials
- 13. Interviews
- 14. Frequently asked questions
- 15. SEO How to guide
- 16. Proposals
- 17. Industry Views
- 18. Trends report
- 19. E-bombs
- 20. Broken pages
- 21. Tips, tricks and hacks
- 22. Buyers guides and reviews
- 23. Product or service comparison
- 24. Landing Pages
- 25. Social Media Posts
- 26. Email marketing
- 27. eBooks
- 28. Checklists
- Were these 28 types of content useful ?
My website content strategy is 3 fold:
- Answer users questions with answers on my web pages and blog posts.
- Attract my target audience and website visitors.
- A user experience that converts the website visitors onto my email marketing database.
Now, let’s run through the different types of content writing and types you can create and benefit from.
1. Data Driven Content
I produced a data report outlining website traffic estimates to the top 700 digital marketing agencies in the UK and turned it into a blog post.
I simply used the data and produced a pie chart using the built in charting tool inside Google Sheets.
Data driven content creation works in other industries too.
This topic is rather sensitive.
A private investigation company did a survey of 200 people and produced an Infidelity Report.
144 other websites have linked to that blog posts and there has been 724 shares of the content on Facebook.
An infographic is a form of content creation that will simplify complicated information.
I created an infographic of my business ideas blog post to summarise the best new business ideas.
The infographic even earned 5 links from other websites.
Sign up for a free account at Canva.com and adapt any one of their free infographic templates.
Brand it up and make the content of your infographic useful for users.
Then you can publish your infographic on social sharing websites such as Visual.ly, Scoop.it and Flipboard.com.
3. Top 50 list
A list another popular type of content writing that works well in the search engines and social platforms.
A holiday destination client briefed me to do keyword research for their next blog post.
I discovered from the research a very popular search query.
“Places to visit in xxx”
So the client created a list of related, non competing places in the area.
And, of course, they put their business at number one on the list.
Then they reached out to the places and venues on the list to mention their inclusion; with the hope of striking up a conversation or backlink.
4. Curated content
A curated content list is a type of content writing where you write a page on your website and summarise and comment on a list of other website articles.
You simply add your unique opinion and commentary on what others have written.
For example, here’s a curated link of marketing and advertising books.
5. Step-by-step instructions
Some people, some products, absolutely need these instructions.
Where would we be today with those IKEA furniture step-by-step instruction guides?
Instructions are so powerful that IKEA even purchased TaskRabbit, a company of handyman who assemble furniture.
I published a 4000 word step by step guide to the broken link building process.
In an extremely difficult and hard to rank topic I’m currently on page 2 in Google.
And my YouTube video gets watch around 400 times per month.
Another type of content writing that works well in the social engines and social media are recipes where you aim to deliver an end result.
Consider a traditional cake recipe.
You need ingredients and then you need step by step instructions.
7. Case studies
My website contains a host of previous website work and case studies.
Most web designers simply produce screenshots of the work they did.
I go beyond screenshots and explain the business rationale for re-designing or developing a website.
The case study adds business context to the project.
Read the full guide on how to create marketing case studies.
8. Before and after examples
You may have seen this kind of website content used in diet products, home improvement and web design portfolios.
You show what a person, room or website looked like before and contrast it with the new improved version.
Great visual content like this can highlight dramatic changes and improvements.
Here’s the before and after example of a recruitment web design we did.
Before – this is their old home page.
After – this is their current home page.
I like to borrow content writing ideas from movies and books.
A good story is a way to attract and engage a person and get your message across; especially on blog posts shared on social media.
My favourite writer has a great story on his website called Ranger Up Leads The Way.
It’s about a business that drove $750,000 in social commerce sales as a result of the content they produced for their clothing business.
The page could have been called “how to create content for your business”.
But that would have been incredibly boring.
Great content can be produced by documenting; popularised by Gary Vaynerchuk.
Love him or loathe him, documenting is where you create content as you are working towards a goal.
You don’t show the end results, you explain what you’re doing as you’re doing it.
Documenting is about sharing the journey with website visitors, customers and subscribers; good or bad.
Testimonials are great pieces of web content especially when clients or customers provide them without prompting.
Take websites like Amazon that have book reviews and testimonials rated by people who have purchased the product before you.
Testimonials reduce risk.
You can also install testimonial plugins such as Feefo to business and shopping websites to generate user generated testimonials.
Then share a screenshot on social media with the text from the testimonial or client.
Brent produces some great video interview content.
He teaches the business end of web marketing to designers and developers.
Video interviews give his potential and existing customers an insight into other people’s experiences in business.
You do need good production values but video interview content adds the human element that written word sometimes does not convey.
Steven Pressfield talks about almost puking up when he and his business partner started doing video interviews to promote their new product.
After trial and error they figured out the best solution was not to talk to the camera but to let the camera roll and they just talk to each other naturally.
14. Frequently asked questions
Creating website content for websites has been a common client issue for many web professionals.
I sat down with a small business owner, Dave, in a restaurant and I read out a list of prepared questions about his industry.
I turned on the voice recorder on my iPhone and he replied with the answers.
The recorded answers from Dave were transcribed and put on his FAQ web page.
Simple, easy and very powerful in conveying the client’s expertise to his target audience.
15. SEO How to guide
The most popular reason for content writing is for search engine optimisation purposes.
The reason ‘how to’ content is so powerful in the search engines is because people use Google to find a solution to their problem.
And Google aim to reward the best website content for a users questions with top search rankings.
When skaters type “how to do a skateboard kick-flip” then they are looking for an answer to their problem.
And the best way to serve up a solution to create, for example, a ‘how to do a skateboard kick-flip’ page in a YouTube, Facebook, IGTV video or on your website.
A worried client once told me he was concerned about this approach as he would lose potential customers if he showed or explained to prospective customers how his products and services were actually produced.
I replied ‘a 70 year old grandmother is not going to go up a pair of ladders to repair a roof and clean out the leaves from her gutters’.
She just wants to know you’re the expert she can call on.
How to start a how to guide
Start this process by typing “how to …” in Google.
You can have a bit of fun on Google messing around by simply typing different letters of the alphabet after you’ve typed “how to”.
Most people fear giving away their secret how to method.
But unless you own the secret recipe for Coke or Irn Bru, rest assured, most people will never ever implement your ‘how to’ guide.
But if the ‘how to’ that you write is really valuable for your audience, people will share it, like it and so on and then it becomes valuable to others.
I have lots of successful and failed website proposals I can turn to when I’m looking to create new online content for my website.
There’s nothing confidential in the proposals.
Adapting what I had already written saves me a bundle of time and less agony when creating or adding new content to my website.
17. Industry Views
Simon deliver mobile strategies for big brands and he produces a weekly report, as part of his content strategy, about what is happening in the industry.
He writes a weekly newsletter that he publishes on his Addictive Mobile website and in his newsletter.
Many would say this is curated content but what Simon does is translate what is happening in a way most people can understand the impact or opportunities for their business.
There’s a ton of quality content in each article and notice the calls to action at the end of the article.
18. Trends report
Another great type of content writing is to write a trends report.
I have an old website trends report here (that I need to update) that I created for web professionals in my industry.
I have a recruitment client and every year they publish a salary guide.
This salary report that covers most job types is a useful resource for job seekers and human resource managers.
The only downside to these reports is that you have to update them every year.
Amy Hoy coined the phrase e-bomb as content people will love.
E stands for educational.
Your content strategy should be to educate prospects as opposed to writing vainly about your or your business.
Amy creates her content in 3 steps; pain, dream, fix.
To find a prospects’ pain you find a common problem on a forum and note that.
Then you write down what it would be like if that pain went away (dream).
Then you list the steps to fix that pain.
So for example, look at this landing page.
- Pain – vague link building blog posts leave you confused and unclear.
- Dream – Within 12 months I was getting over 1,000 organic visits per month and new leads.
- Fix – 10 link building lessons including how to do broken link building.
20. Broken pages
My recent blog post about website copy fixes is based around a 404, broken page that earned many backlinks in the past.
The old page content is slightly out of date but the theme or topic obviously resonated with all the people who linked to the page.
So I took the key headings of the broken page as a framework and then wrote my version of the post.
Instead of 10 tips in the original article I published 17 tips.
21. Tips, tricks and hacks
Another method of content writing for the web and search engines is to publish tips and tricks.
For example, I summarised 17 tips to improve or fix your website copy.
These suggestions came from my personal experience of improving my own website copy and pages.
A hack is simply a shortcut or something that makes you look clever.
I wrote a blog post on an SEO hack that I accidentally discovered in the search results.
And now that hack is used on every new blog post I create.
22. Buyers guides and reviews
I have written 2 blog post guides and reviews about my suppliers product.
This review of Adobe hosting and content management system supplier is the second best page for organic traffic on my website.
And this blog post was written about the marketing automation company I use.
Why write a buyers guide and review ?
- Both pages rank on page one in Google.
- I know the products very well and can write without hiring an external copywriter.
- I am sharing my expertise.
- Reviews and buyer guides have the potential to earn links.
23. Product or service comparison
Here’s a reason for writing great content about a product or service comparison.
During the purchasing process most people hesitate before buying.
This is called the evaluation of alternatives stage.
(I can still remember this lecture when studying marketing at university.)
You have a need for something, you find a potential product or solution and just before you purchase you hesitate.
The consumer is wondering if they are making the correct purchase choice.
So they search terms such as :
- Alternative to product x or product x alternative.
- Product x reviews.
- X versus product y.
Months after I created my supplier review page I discovered the search query “adobe business catalyst v wordpress” in the related searches results.
I added a new product comparison content section to my page.
In reality, this product comparison merits its own dedicated page.
There’s a small UK e-commerce company basing their entire advertising campaign as a “Shopify alternative”.
Positioning your web page content as an alternative or product A v product B allows you to piggyback on top of a much larger brand’s success.
When you compare yourself to competing products be truthful; you don’t want lawyers emailing you.
24. Landing Pages
Landing pages are typically associated with pages using for advertising campaigns.
Today there’s a blurred line between a blog post and a landing page.
I can add a call to action multiple times throughout a blog post and engage a reader for longer.
WordStream provide a great insight into landing pages, conversion rates and improvement strategies.
25. Social Media Posts
Every social media channel has different image and video dimensions and users on different channels seek different content.
I’m biased towards search engine optimisation since I mainly work with b2b clients.
But solutions such as shoppable Instagram images perk up my ears as these are very tangible and measurable social post types.
Here’s an interesting statistic showing the life span of a social media post.
26. Email marketing
If you use MailChimp or Drip for sending email marketing campaigns they provide a url that can be shared on your social media networks.
Alternatively, repurpose the newsletter content as a blog post or break the content down into social graphics and posts.
Tools such as Google Docs, Slides and Reedsy allow you to create a document and turn it into a PDF formatted eBook.
For instance, most of my blog posts contain a call to action to download an eBook version of the post.
eBooks can be repurposed into slides to be used in Slideshare or as Instagram or Facebook images.
Here is an example of a checklist for creating content.
- Research topics
- Identify low difficulty topics with hundreds of same as search queries
- Choose the topic you can write authoritatively about
- Check the SERPS result to identify the user intention and what they want
- Choose 1 of these 28 types of content
- Map out page chapters in Google Docs
- Write your persuasive headline, page title and description
- Do your content research and flesh out chapters
- Spell and grammar check
- Add images and call to action
- Add 3 internal links and one external link
- Publish and promote content.
Were these 28 types of content useful ?
I hope you find or use just one of these types of content useful.
Creating content is similar to finding your sense of fashion.
Once you find something that fits you keep using it.