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Understanding Web Content

4 December, 2010

All the textual, visual and aural content found inside a website or web page is called web content. This includes articles, blog entries, comments, maps, videos, music, hyperlinks, and animations. Thus, web content is literally all the stuff in a website.

At present, search engines are text-based and so web content is predominantly in text form. In order for a website or page to rank highly in search engines, and therefore become more visible to online visitors, all the non-text content must be coupled with a textual description such that a picture or video of a baby having cereal should be described or headlined accordingly. As such, creating content is as of the moment also called writing content. However, this term may embrace such other meaning apart from the actual activity of writing texts and descriptions.

Content is king, so they say, and therefore a website must be filled with original and interesting content for it to gain a good level of visits and hopefully generate online sales. With this in mind, web content has to be managed the same way that the website has to be managed.

Know that a website can be likened to a candy store and the content is its products and other promotional materials that lure people to buy. Web content, therefore must be fresh, juicy and tasty– figuratively and literally like that of a candy. Fresh because it must be current or up-to-date; juicy because it must spark the interest of the readers; and tasty because it must appeal to the palate of the audience and make them want for more. Like a friendly store, the content must be organized properly, allowing visitors to find exactly what they need swiftly and easily.

More importantly, web content must be unique and original. Search engines that rank or rate websites based on their content will penalize those that contain duplicate content. Plagiarism, the use or the imitation of language and thoughts of another is a mortal sin in the world of authorship both online and offline. The simple act of copying materials from another website and pasting it in your own is a grave mistake, unless you give due credit to and ask permissions from your sources.

Although you can copy and paste materials and do away with plagiarism by citing your sources, your website will not be a credible source of information if you do not post original content. Therefore, the bulk of your web content must be original and merely supplemented with stuff from others, particularly those with authority in the subject matter like scientists, teachers, doctors and lawyers. At best, create something based on your personal experience or opinion as a response to whatever knowledge and insight you gained from others.

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