Con­tent is king” is a phrase deeply embed­ded in the typ­i­cal search marketer’s psy­che. It’s defin­ing what con­sti­tutes great con­tent that can get a bit per­plex­ing at times. I recently stum­bled onto an arti­cle by WordStream’s Elisa Gab­bert that offers what I believe to be great prac­ti­cal advice for defin­ing and max­i­miz­ing great con­tent. The only ques­tion is, are you will­ing and able?

Gabbert’s list of best con­tent prac­tices defines eight “ables” that cre­ate a par­a­digm for great con­tent. Many of the “ables” fall into the cat­e­gory of com­mon SEO best prac­tices, such as cre­at­ing find­able con­tent; oth­ers may catch you by sur­prise. Per­son­ally, I love that she included “reportable” in the mix because it adds a sense of rel­e­vancy to the site that, in turn, fos­ters rel­e­vant organic search results.

Gab­bert begins the arti­cle by sim­ply defin­ing con­tent as “infor­ma­tion,” a clever move that serves to dis­trib­ute the weight of Web con­tent away from out­landish expec­ta­tions such as hav­ing the best arti­cles, cam­paign, or mar­ket­ing strat­egy, to a more holis­tic frame of a lit­tle of this and a lit­tle of that. By sim­ply exam­in­ing your company’s goals, you will undoubt­edly come up with a suc­cess­ful “able” strategy.

When com­bined with tech­nolo­gies, processes, and for­mu­las, Gabbert’s “ables” can eas­ily be taken to the next level. The def­i­n­i­tion of great con­tent would then grow to include con­tent that meets best prac­tices at scale. This means cre­at­ing a plat­form or a process for near-automated or user-generated con­tent that fits within these best practices.

LinkedIn and Zaz­zle are two sites that are doing a great job of lever­ag­ing the “ables” at scale. LinkedIn is one of the top plat­forms for sharable con­tent and has opened groups and user-generated con­tent to Google. Zaz­zle appears to be tak­ing a highly opti­mized and data-driven approach to for­mu­laically cre­ate cat­e­gories and tax­onomies based on user inter­ac­tions with the site. If there was an award for best site archi­tec­ture for user-generated con­tent and SEO, this site would get it. They have an incred­i­ble num­ber of user-generated pages indexed!

Com­pa­nies that com­bine great SEO fun­da­men­tals, site archi­tec­ture, and also lever­age their domain author­ity effec­tively are in the best posi­tion to get the most out of their qual­ity con­tent. Qual­ity con­tent is use­less if it can­not be found, so we can’t just rely on qual­ity con­tent alone.

Con­tent and the art of being “able” is really a mat­ter of find­ing what works for you and lever­ag­ing it to the fullest. Are there any web­sites that you know are using “ables” to the fullest? Any “ables” that you think should’ve made the cut? Let me know! Mean­while, I’ve got dibs on “scalable.”

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