Grow Your Directory Site’s Traffic with Curated Content
Content curation is one of the fastest ways to achieve growth in web traffic for publishing, directory, business and media sites. With the rise of social media and growth of mobile devices, content can now be viewed and shared more quickly and easily than ever before.
Mainstream sites like Buzzfeed, HuffingtonPost, Distractify as well as more niche properties like Colossal (www.thisiscolossal.com – Art & Design blog) use curation at their core to drive visits to their site.
What is Content Curation?
Content curation is the process of sorting through the vast amounts of content on the web and presenting it in a meaningful and organized way around a specific theme. The work involves sifting, organizing, and displaying information. It is increasingly becoming an effective tool for companies to increase their online presence and it’s easy to see why.
Why is it so valuable?
Curated content puts you at the front, as the gatekeeper or tastemaker for which of this content is used on your site. You will have control over amassing it from a variety of sources and delivering it in an organized and unique fashion.
Sites using content curation also tend to be highly efficient in increasing their natural Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which in part increases traffic to their site. Sites with curated content are updated rather frequently, and search engines will reward these up-to-date sites by indexing them more often.
- Grows Your Site’s Traffic
Content curation websites attract vast amounts of traffic. We live in an age of abundant content and these sites are drawing in huge amounts of visitors all across the web.
- Quicker Way to Create Content
It can be pretty difficult to create great content on a regular basis. Compared to that curating can be easier, quicker and cheaper than producing all of your content on your own. It’s a leveraged value-add for your readers, and thus can potentially be more profitable for your site.
- Builds an Identity
By curating content for a specific subject matter, you can start to build and cultivate an identity for you site. You can use this identity to give your site a personality for visitors to relate to within your topic’s niche.
- Develops a Following
As you start curating content of a particular type, you will eventually start attracting an audience that favors content of that type. If you’re the person your readers come to when they need new information on a given topic, then you’re doing your job effectively.
Sounds great, so how do I do it?
Having topically relevant keywords and phrases throughout your site is very important to your site’s SEO. Yes, I said keywords AND phrases. A common mistake people make is focusing too much on individual keywords.
Most of these will be far too limiting and competitive to gain much ground in the search ranks. Instead, it’s much smarter and efficient to focus on a common idea or subject matter and find phrases and long tail keywords that fit into that set.
- Pick your Subject Matter or Theme
Choose a specific and relevant area that fits your website. Keep your topics as specific and niche as possible.
- Find a List of Sources
Comb the web for sources of content. Not all of the best sources can be found on search engines and can require a bit more digging. Try these areas and you’ll always have an amazing link to share:
- Use Social sharing websites like Reddit, Imgur and Digg
- Find a blog or website you like and follow the trail of links that you can find on their content, also be sure to set up an RSS reader
- Try this Chrome extension called Pin Search, it “leverages the power of Google Search by Image to give you a wealth of information about any picture you find on Pinterest. Find similar pictures. Find all the websites where the picture appears…”
- Publishing platforms such as Tumblr and WordPress
- Social bookmarking tools like Delicious.com
- Social Q&A websites such as Quora.com
- Other websites and resources for finding useful content: Inbound.org Digest, Medium, Panda, BuzzSumo, and Swayy
- Collect and Publish the Best, Most Relevant Content Possible
This is now where you sift through the content that you have been able to find and pick out the highest quality content and what you think will be most appealing to your visitors. Which are the most attractive? Which ones will draw people in? Which ones best fit the subject matter of my site? These and more are the questions you must be asking when looking for content to curate.
- Provide Context
Use an annotation method to add your own comments and insight. This will provide some context for your audience on why the content is important and why you are sharing it with them. This puts a personal touch and some ownership on the content even though it is from another source.
- Curate Consistently
Establish a publishing schedule and make sure to stick with it. No need to overwhelm yourself or make it too demanding, just decide on a cycle that is reasonable and can be met consistently.
- Share and Promote
Make sure you always attribute the original sources of content you curate and link to them. Be sure to always give credit.
- Track, Analyze, Optimize
Keep close tabs on the how your content is performing and use this knowledge to guide future curation. Constantly look for ways to optimize your content and make sure you are focusing on the topics your audience is most interested in.
So are there any negatives?
Good question, there are a few things to keep in mind when using curated content:
- Copyright Issues
With the majority of the content coming from another source you must be careful in making sure you are citing and providing links to the original source when you show it on your own site to avoid any copyright infringements.
- Quantity Over Quality
Focusing on getting the most content up instead of the best content can have an adverse affect on your site and its incoming traffic. Having high quality content is one of the best and easiest tools a site owner can use to grow and keep visitors. Take your time and be selective when choosing your content, it pays off in the long run.
- Don’t Forget About Original Content
Relying too much on curated content can leave your site without its own voice and style. Google and other search engines will consider a site with only curated content to be “thin”. This can hurt your site’s SEO efforts. To combat this your goal should be to have a good blend of curated content and original content. Create content that fits your site’s identity and your target audience will be interested in.
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