I know what you are thinking not another quality vs. quantity posts. I hear you there, but at least it’s not another Pinterest or Facebook Timeline article! I swear I have seen more of them in the past couple of weeks than I can count. “How to set up your timeline,” or “You should do this with your timeline,” and “Are you using the timeline,” etc., etc., etc. I am just not so tuned into Facebook as much as I used to be.
Anyway, getting back on track…
We often hear things like quality trumps quantity, but this isn’t always the case and it may depend on what you are comparing. I mean I probably wouldn’t spend my last dollar on an expensive meal, even though the quality might be great. I would rather spend my last dollar sparingly and get as much as I could for it.
Content, ads, and word count:
When it comes to website content we hear things like a quality well written and researched articles will outperform poorly written articles. This might be true in some cases, but the circumstances vary widely and it would be difficult to come to that conclusion in every situation. We all have a different opinion of what quality is. If it’s not something we are familiar with it is nearly impossible to judge.
Is it copied? Does the site have too many ads or links? Do they promote unrelated content? If so, should it be considered poor quality? How about the number of words in an article? Is 500 words or less an indicator of quality? I read a lot of articles and there are plenty of 500 word articles out there that are better than 700-1000+ articles.
I don’t know how many times I have read an article on a popular website that had tons of tweets and likes. I wouldn’t say it was a terrible article, but I wouldn’t call it the best article in the world either. Certainly not worthy of hundreds of tweets and likes it managed to rack up, but that’s my opinion. Maybe some people thought it was a great article.
What about pictures / images – eye candy?
Is it absolutely necessary that quality content should include images? If so how many? This one seems like it could go either way. There are great articles that have just enough pictures to grab readers attention and interest, but there are also really informative posts with little or none.
Don’t forget about Backlinks either:
Now we have the whole quantity vs. quality backlinks talked about all the time. You usually hear people talking about quality backlinks, but if you do some digging there are a number of articles that seem to imply it doesn’t always matter so much.
I was reading an article the other day about how a specific site focused on quality backlinks, while the competitors that ranked right alongside them in the Google top 10 results seemed to be doing so based on the quantity of backlinks from mostly not so great sites. Many of them irrelevant and not even remotely related to the type of content the sites were about.
We are told by Google we should focus on quality, useful and helpful content, which will result in other sites linking to ours naturally. Wow! Really Google! Great idea, but it’s not going to happen in the real world. A lot of linking to other sites come from friends, acquaintances, plugs, and things like that. A sort of you mention my site or post, and I’ll mention yours type of thing. But, ultimately most of it comes from going out and getting your own backlinks, or hiring an SEO company to help you claim the top spot in Google, which of course varies considerably from one to the next.
Sure if you have a popular site and blast your name out to everywhere you can think of some people will link to your website regardless of whether it is good or not, but a lot of it is revolves around popularity rather than the actual content. Not always of course, but often.
If your site is new or not so popular it will be difficult to see much, if any natural linking. This is why you see contests and things being given away. People suddenly become much more interested, and likely to share or link to something when they have an incentive to do so.
I am not so convinced that quality always wins. It may help, but it seems to be more of a popularity contest along with playing the backlink game. You don’t necessarily need to have both. I am not saying write crappy content, and blast your website out to everywhere possible, but there are a lot of cases where quantity wins. You might even say spammers are gaining ground or winning a few battles.
Is it fair? I don’t know life isn’t fair is it? Lots of things aren’t fair, but that’s the way it is.
Image: Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net & Image: Idea go / FreeDigitalPhotos.net