As the founder of a content generation firm the idea of “unique content” is something I deal with on a daily basis. Heck, most days it is on an hourly basis. Between negotiating sales or educating clients I probably say that term 40+ times a day. So what does it mean? And more importantly, how does it impact your site traffic?
Here’s the deal, unique content is not all its cracked up to be.
First, let’s diagnose who should care about unique content. This person runs a legitimate website that is planning on sticking with it for the long haul. This person is going after SEO traffic and is diligently learning all they can about marketing online. I hope against hope that this person is you. If you are just throwing up a bunch of sites with black hat methods hoping to make a few sales before Google figures out your scheme, move on. This post and all my good vibes are not for you.
Okay, so we have our audience. Now, let’s chat about what unique content actually is. @Sugarrae did a post ages ago about this very topic. You can find it here – http://www.sugarrae.com/seo-sphere/when-unique-content-is-not-unique/
In this post she talks about the literal and conceptual definition of unique content. Essentially this is the difference between the words on your page would pass Copyscape (literal) and you actually are adding something new (conceptual) to the conversation.
Did you catch that?
If all you are doing is searching for a term, taking the top 5 pieces and re-working them your content is literally unique. It will pass Copyscape. You won’t have any problems with Google. Your content is “officially” unique.
Your content is also a little bland. And in this modern age of content marketing it won’t do anything for you. It probably worked in 1999, or even 2005, but it won’t do anything for you now.
This type of unique content doesn’t go anywhere.
Nobody is going to link to your post. Nobody is going to share your “vision” or get excited about your project. In fact, chances are the only way your content will be used is to create the next 50 grab and smash articles on the very same topic. Congrats.
Unique content should be the lowest standard
Does my company run items through Copyscape? Absolutely! People pay us for unique content and we go out of our way to insure incidental duplicate content is purged. However, that is the lowest standard we have. When you hire a content writer you should be hiring someone who soaks up your industry and begins to add to the conversation.
This is what @Sugarrae means by “conceptually unique” content. It’s actually a new thought. Whether it is a new spin or a new fact or whatever, it is actually new.
Conceptually unique content is what is passed around Twitter, Facebook and other mediums. Conceptually unique content is what brings you traffic, respect and customers.
Is it difficult to consistently create content that is conceptually unique? Yes!! Wouldn’t it just be easier to get the temporary Google juice from literally unique content? Of course it would, and that’s why conceptually unique content does so well. Most people are lazy and don’t take the time. Or, most people don’t value content writing enough to pay a professional to do it. When you do provide conceptually unique content you stand out from the crowd. Above the noise of your competitors.
Our content generation firm works with a lot of clients. And they run the spectrum from “just make it pass Copyscape” to “please put your heart and soul into each post” and we have a wide range of prices to accommodate all of them. At the end of the day it isn’t about unique content. It’s about valuable content.
Take an honest look at your archives today and consider whether it is mostly literally or conceptually unique. Care to share your findings?
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