Like most well-balanced articles, the answer to the question ‘is paying for blog content a good idea?’ is ‘it depends’. When it’s good, it’s very very good, but when it’s bad it could be catastrophic for getting your website seen online. If you’re an estate agent looking to pay someone to write content for you, there are a few factors you need to consider to avoid falling into a well-laid content trap.
- Who is selling the content?
- Who is writing the content?
Who is selling the content?
If you’re not sure why exactly you need a blog and you just want to get it out of your hair so you don’t have to think about it, it’s really easy to be seduced by companies offering regular content for a small monthly fee. Bish bash bosh, done. In this scenario, often the company you’ll be paying has multiple customers so you’ll have the same wording in your blog article as another non-competing agent.
This might not seem like a problem, but search engines, especially Google, HATE this. Their algorithms will pick up on the fact that you’re using duplicate content, will assume that you’re not offering fresh, useful words for people visiting your website, and then rank you lower as a result. You can ask your web developer to exclude your blog articles from being indexed on search engines, but if you’re doing this then there is absolutely no point wasting your money buying them in the first place.
- Be wary of companies offering industry-specific content for a small monthly fee
- If someone is claiming to only write posts for one agent per postcode, RUN. It doesn’t matter online, the internet doesn’t work in postcodes. Google doesn’t care what postcode you’re in if they sniff out duplicate content, it can put you below competitors in the rankings and cost you business.
Who is writing the content?
I know what you might be thinking ‘Katie, you’re a Copywriter with an expensive antique book habit, obviously, you’re going to want Copywriters to get paid as much as possible.’
Yes, it’s true that I have a vested interest, but also you should hear me out.
If a company is offering cheap content, it’s likely they’re not paying their writers very much. A writer not being paid very much isn’t going to give a single crap about the businesses they’re writing for and that means they’re not going to give a single crap about you. They’re often paid a pittance per word, their aim is to churn out as much content as humanly possible to get paid.
If the place you’re paying to give you content is really unethical, they might even outsource content writing to another country, so they can get away with paying less than the minimum wage. This can often lead to posts being written by someone who doesn’t have English as their first language, containing grammatical and syntactical errors- not a great look for any business.
When I write articles, I’m not just paid for writing the articles. I’m paid for the six years of knowledge I’ve built up from writing content for the property industry, I’m paid for my research, I’m paid for keeping up-to-date with lettings legislation, I’m paid for watching the Chancellor’s budget. I’m also paid for writing competently, and for tailoring every single post to the business I’m writing for – even if it has the same topic as another I’ve written.
I can adopt the unique voice of your brand, I can talk competently about what legislation means for your landlords, I can take a dive into local sales figures and analyse what the graphs mean. If something major happens I’ll contact you for a comment to include, to help position you as a local expert. And ultimately I care about your business and will make sure that every article is Search Engine Optimised, so it’s actively helping your Google rankings and encouraging people to visit your website.
In conclusion, to see a return on your investment it’s worth paying to hire someone to write content who knows their onions and will write you bespoke articles. However, please disregard this advice if you get your kicks from throwing your money directly into the bin.