You’ve heard it said often enough: “Content is King.” But is it?
Second-rate Search Engine Optimization experts and followers all over the Internet will repeat this mantra over and over again as if it is true and add such silly wisdom – let’s call it Sisdom – as “If content is king then link building is queen.” Yeah, right.
Let me tell you why this is all wrong. Any schmuck can put content on a web page. In fact, a web page is not a web page without content. Try putting up a blank white screen with nothing but your html and body tags. Call that content and every goober with a hat on will laugh at you. (The goobers without hats will stare blankly.)
I’ve seen people build a five page website and just wait. “Yep, built a website! The business will come any time. I’m juu-uuu-uust a-waitin’. God bless my soul.”
OK, I’m being silly. But you know it happens. People build a website – they’ve got content – and nothing happens. Some king.
Content without links will get you nothing. I’m not saying start building inbound links and all your problems will be solved. But I am saying that you can take any crappy site with content, build links to it and at least improve your Google juice. Content alone will not ensure you any rankings. It won’t ensure you any sales. It won’t ensure you any traffic. But put one strategically placed link somewhere else on the Web and point it back to your crappy site with content and you’ll likely increase your traffic. You’ll likely also increase your PageRank and Google’s algorithms will jump for joy because they found something of value related to your content – even though it’s not on your crappy website.
Now, that’s how links are more important than content. Even a bad link – not a spam link or a “bad neighborhood” link (I’m talking about an ineffectual milquetoast link) – can increase the Search Engine Optimization juice on your lousy content website. Oooooh, but take that lousy content and rewrite it. I don’t just mean change a few verbs and rearrange your keywords. I mean really rewrite it. Rewrite it from scratch so that your content shines – like Patton’s combat boots. Spit polish your content until you can see your own reflection. Don’t do anything. Now you’ve got a website with valuable content – and that’s what will make a difference.
Lesson: Content is not king. Good content is king.
Inbound links to a lousy content site with crappy content is better than a website with bad content and no links. But take that website and make your content good and your good content site without links will outperform a bad content site with all the links in the world. Add links to it, however, and you’ve got one hell of a website to be proud of. And it will make you money as part of your Search Engine Optimization efforts. I think that’s what Rand Fishkin meant when he said that links are more important than content. To that I wholeheartedly agree.