What is Thin Content
One of the biggest challenges marketers, business owners, or anyone else who has been tasked to create website content faces is to actually sit down and write content for the website that adds value for the target audience. With an emphasis on quality, developing contentWhat is Content Marketing? that is engaging and informative is especially important if you hope to drive traffic to a website. Google relies on quality content to deliver the best answers to user search questions. When a blog post or webpage contains little to no value and doesn’t fully explain the topic, this is what is referred to as thin content.
Thin content also refers to
- Duplicate content. This refers to when two or more pages have the same content. Some duplicate content issues are a result of mistakes made within the page coding and can be easily fixed. For example, Google reads HTTP and HTTPS as two separate pages. If you recently updated your site with an SSL (providing you with the lock in the browser address bar), some pages might be set as both HTTP and HTTPS.
- Plagiarized or scraped content from other websites is also considered thin content. With little to no rewriting of the content, there is no value being gained from your website. Plagiarization should be avoided at all times.
- Having auto-generated content doesn’t happen as often as it used to, back before Google’s Panda algorithm update. The rules surrounding thin and spammy content have helped to eliminate this practice.
- With content being king, webpages with endless affiliate links are also considered spammy and thin content.
The importance of NOT creating thin content
Thin content can damage your brand reputation by lowering the quality score of those pages which results in lower page ranking. Prior to February 2011, spammy content was rampant across the internet. Keyword stuffing was a ‘proven’ way to generate traffic for a website. These pages were mostly written for Google to rank them high in search results but offered little to no value to the user.
To stop poor copywriting practices and provide better quality content for search intent, Google unleashed what has become known as the Panda update. The effects were felt soon after with major drops in traffic to sites with thin content and an increase in quality, high-value websites. Google began rewarding websites that generated quality content with higher ranking which in turn drove more traffic to these websites. The poor quality sites either had to change their ways and play by Google’s rules or close up.
Google’s mission statement is to provide the best resource for any search query. Therefore, if your contract is lacking in the details department, Google won’t return your page high up in the Search Engine Result Page, or SERP for short. Generally speaking, pages with less than 300 words are considered thin content. Page length is determined by subject matter and how well it is written. A poorly written 2500-word blog post will rank lower than a skillfully worded 250-word article.
What can you do to start creating better content?
- Don’t pad the page with useless fluff. This won’t help your cause.
- Do your research and really know what you are writing about.
- Stick to one topic per page, though there are exceptions, of course.
- Be authentic.
- Check for grammar and spelling mistakes before publishing your work.
Thin Content take away
You don’t have to be the world’s best writer to create content for your site. What is important is that, whatever you do end up writing, make sure it is clear, well-researched, and checked for spelling and grammar. Make sure it answers the question you intended for your audience. If you can do this, you are well on your way to eliminating thin content and creating value for your audience.
bOB HOmer is the Co-Founder and Digital Marketing Director of Lethologica. bOB’s artistic vision extends across all media and reflects his art school training. His superior knowledge and ongoing education in all things web- and SEO-related affords him the expertise to be lead on all web projects, making him your best resource for inbound marketing excellence. bOB has been bringing his unique vision to art and the web for over 20 years