The Creative Side to On Site Optimization
On Site Optimization doesn’t have to be all about codes. There’s more to it than that. It’s also split up to have a creative side – a side for artists. No, you don’t have to be a Michelangelo to have a dashing, creative side to on site optimization (but that might help), you just need to make things a little nicer to look at, and perhaps a little nicer to read.
Creativity in Words
It’s not too hard to be creative in what you say – some people have the innate talent to form and manipulate words, some don’t. Like every skill in life, it takes practice. In on site optimization, you have to be content-creative in two things
– Article Title
The title of your article has to draw a person’s attention immediately. It has to speak volumes, ignite curiosity, maintain enthusiasm – all in two seconds. People browsing on the internet have an attention span of roughly 2 seconds for every title that pass their eyes by. If you do not capture their attention enough for them to click through to your entire article, you’ve lost a whole opportunity of letting that person know who you are, what you’re trying to sell (or tell), and a whole chunk of user activity with it.
While it is true that using a title that targets keywords or keyphrases that you want to rank for, it’s JUST AS IMPORTANT to make it intriguing, exciting, and emotionally enticing – and that takes a huge amount of creativity.
After reeling them in through your title, the next thing they will look at is your content. How good is your use of words? Are you using the simplest, easy-to-understand words? Are your sentences phrased in such a way that they have a clear-cut, no-nonsense approach or are your audiences asking, “Where’s the beef?” The point is, write in a clear, concise way that you’re wonderfully delivering what your visitors came for and nothing else.
Don’t be a Doppelganger (Consistency)
People read and develop loyalty to the author mainly because of how he writes, what he writes about, and how he publishes and promotes his stuff. Change even one of those things and chances are, you lose a certain amount of readers. Consistency in your writing style connotes discipline in your creativity. This is also followed by branding.
– Writing Voice
There is that intangible factor that we all have as writers – we have a writing voice. And to each, his own. I personally think that no two writing voice is the same. And our audience can distinguish that voice if they’ve been around long enough. It’s pretty weird if you’ll see my name as the author and yet the writing style seems to be that of a lawyer – with a lot of mind-blowing words. That just ain’t me – and you won’t like it.
– Communicative / Experiential (what suits your niche)
People like to be talked to. People like stories. People like it when they can relate. So talk. Communicate. Tell them what it’s like. And tell them that you’re human. You feel – and you’ve been there once. The best writing voices have this in common: they don’t just write. They communicate. They connect with their audience.
On site optimization doesn’t have to be about counting keywords. It has to be about making a connection with your readers in an emotional and perhaps, experiential level. That will keep them coming back – and that is much more important than measuring and optimizing keyword density.
A Thousand Words in 300 x 300 px (Pictures)
I think all websites should have images. Images make a page more beautiful and it also makes the long lines of text less boring. It’s easy to mistake images as something that will be able to directly increase your rankings by hiding keywords in the ALT text. This should not be the case.
– Attractiveness / Quality
Image Alt text is good. You might pop up in Google image search once in a while. But what really matters is, is your picture really good to look at? Is it beautiful? Even if it pops up in an image search result, chances are, it will not be clicked if it doesn’t attract the eyes. The quality of your picture speaks a lot about you as an author too. You have the freedom to choose your images – why not pick the best one? I sometimes spend an hour just to look for a really good image to go with my post – and I think that’s a huge reason why people love reading my blog entries (especially at God and You).
– Relevance to the topic / Paragraph
Of course, your beautiful picture, even if it’s on a Mona Lisa level, will not have any meaning to it when it is not relevant to what you’re talking about in that page. The picture has to be relevant – one way or another. You can’t just pick any good looking photo out there. Pick a relevant one. I usually use a photo because a long article can be boring to look at. Check out this entry – it has a lot to say. So I put three pictures relevant to each paragraph beside it in order to make it more entertaining to look at – even if it’s just on a peripheral scale.
That Classy Ambiance (Blog Theme)
Isn’t there a nice, warm feeling when you walk into a homey restaurant or coffee shop? The food is pretty much the same with other restaurants. The coffee tastes and smells like the one next door – but then there’s something about the place that you’re more drawn to it. Let’s face it – ambiance is a factor with most people. How do we define ambiance? It’s simply the look of how things are arranged. In your website, that amounts to your theme.
– Clean / Neat
Make your website as clean as possible. Put only the links that are necessary. Put only the sidebars that are necessary. Fix the width and length of every side so that your website would have that clean and neat ambiance. Who likes drinking coffee (no matter how wonderful it tastes and smells like) in a messy, dirty-looking coffee shop? I’d rather do a drive-through or take-out.
– Can communicate who you are in your ‘looks’
The way you dress yourself tells a lot about who you are. The way you design your website SHOULD tell your audience about who you are. This is branding. And branding is very important. The big international companies know it. I know it. You should know it too. Especially now that the search engines are putting a lot of indirect (human emotional filter) ranking-weight on branding.
As any artist would have an inspiration, you have to link to the articles that are relevant to, or has inspired the other article. Do not do interlinking just for the heck of passing over internal linkjuice to a landing page. The right way to do interlinking is to be creative about it and be helpful about it. I usually use phrase-match anchor texts to link to another one of my articles that is relevant. Study how I did it in this article – get the hang of doing it that way.
All these creativity is funneled towards a goal – to impact the human emotional filter (which is entirely impossible to manipulate with technical SEO) and gain a much better user activity profile in your site. Technical SEO can go a long way – but it is limited, unfortunately, to the code, structure and perhaps the loopholes of Google’s algorithm.
In the end, it’s the creative side of on site optimization that can put you up the ranks from your competitors. The good news is, creativity isn’t easily replicated – it has to be inborn, honed, or hired. Which makes it extremely valuable.
Plus, you get a lot of natural links if you are able to master the creative side of on site optimization because hey, every post you make, has a beautiful factor – and that makes it a potential linkbait.
All the time.