A child-like excitement hung over me when I received my first online writing assignments as a rookie online writer. One of the projects required the delivery of short, game reviews for over one hundred, online games. I like gaming, but as I began to think more about it and the urgent time frame, I grew less enchanted.
My first job as a contract writer occurred by chance through an old acquaintance. He needed someone to help him with an online writing job because he was not able to do it due to a family emergency. I was flattered that he asked me, but I also wanted to help out so I jumped at the opportunity.
Through further enquiries, I discovered my client found the writing jobs on websites like Upwork and Freelancewriting. If he accepted too many jobs or did not have time to finish the job himself, he would reassign the jobs to a small group of international contractors who worked directly for him. This allowed him to complete many assignments quickly while keeping a small percentage of the original fee.
Airing my concerns about the time frame with the gaming reviews, my client directed me to write fake game reviews. Instead of testing out each game as there was no time, my client encouraged me to use the web to plagiarize, rehash and astroturf.
As this was my second job with this client, I still had a desire to impress. As time progressed and the deadline neared, I found it harder to produce the reviews. This project squashed my ethics and eventually I had to admit that I could not complete it. Aside from letting my client down, I feel I let myself down by not declining the job at the start.
But aside from creating a bad working environment, this project no matter who completed it could create legal issues. Publishing fake reviews is illegal in many countries, and it can also be detrimental to the search engine optimisation for the website.
Major challenges for online content writers and publishers
- digital scrapers – automatic programs require effective site security
- content thieves – to lazy to do research and write their own original articles
- rehashed articles – badly written and poorly researched articles
- temporary loss of income for the original author
- long term, negative SEO effects for sites that publish stone content
A website’s basic goals are to attract and retain users. Interesting information and useful applications can help to connect your site’s users to the solutions that your business provides. Savvy businesses now publish a company blog. The blog contains useful, regularly updated articles to attract, retain users and optimise the site for search engines. How you use your blog articles to gain and stand out from other businesses, and keep your users returning, requires a well thought out plan with fresh likeable original writing.
Unique content will win you new and repeat business
Copied articles may appear to do well in the short term. In the long term these pages will suffer. Original authors have the ability to appeal through search engines such as Google, to have duplicated material penalised and removed from the web. This should matter to you. If your content is not original, even if it is slightly varied, there is a high chance it will be penalised. So why not just save yourself the trouble? Use unique content from the onset.
7 reasons to use unique content
- Appeal directly to your users by develop personas and write appealing content.
- Publish content that is relevant and useful, this will make your users’ experience enjoyable.
- Gain credibility by delivering content that is believable and trustworthy.
- Write content so that it helps your users to easily find the solutions you offer.
- Appeal to search engines by publishing unique content.
- Don’t be penalised by search engines by producing duplicated and replicated content.
- Avoid expensive and time consuming legal battles by using original content.
Unique content requires reliable research
Producing a unique article involves a reasonable investment of time, research, energy, love and creativeness.
As a writer, I love reading and learning. In order to provide unique content for my clients, I am now completing short, online courses in various topics. This forms part of my personal research and commitment to develop content that is both reliable and credible. It compliments my experience as a researcher.
Original content is appealing and not just to search engines. Your visitors come to your website or blog to seek a solution to a problem. Stand out by giving your visitors something different to read and think about. Provide a solution that leads them to using your products or services.