On the web, “content is king”, yet unfortunately, the majority of content on the internet lacks a certain appeal and barely captures a second of attention from hungry readers. The ability to create compelling content is a necessity for businesses due to the invisibility of the online world.

Here are 7 tips to help you create captivating blog or website content:

1. A Great Headline

Which headline is more captivating? Which one would compel you to continue reading?

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The first example is boring, yet the second example creates a sense of urgency. If you read any tabloid newspaper, you will notice a slew of captivating headlines on the outside cover. This is just enough to compel the reader to open the magazine and look inside.

Furthermore, Internet users have short attention spans. Akamai Technologies performed a study of 1,000 web users. The survey results showed that if a shopping website took longer than 4 seconds to load, 75% would not return to the website. Internet users are losing patience by the minute and the quicker you can attract their attention, the longer they will remain on your site.

You have about 4 seconds to grab the reader’s attention with your headline. Make sure it’s a good one.

2. Great Content to Follow Your Headline

A great headline will fail miserably if you do not follow up with related content. Writing a great headline without a story to back it up is similar to selling milk in a carton that reads “Orange Juice”.

If you can create a good headline, you will captivate people enough to continue reading, but if your content is poor and does not offer the value you implied in your headline, your readers will leave as quickly as they came.

3. Listen

If you are a business owner seeking to find a topic on which to write, incorporate news or national headlines in your content. The addition of current events, without injecting strong viewpoints, can help to create captivating pieces because people can relate to these stories.

What are the experts in your industry saying?

Utilize the social networks and set up a Google Reader account to receive daily notifications concerning the subject matter presented from industry leaders and to discover the “buzz words” in your space.

4. Know Your Audience

If you are a venture capital company appealing to investors, you would not write about a celebrity sighting and the latest internet news surrounding it. If you know your audience in detail, you will possess the ability to more effectively communicate to them on their level.

Tip: Create a checklist of traits the type of person you are attempting to target would possess. Consider what they like, what they enjoy and what they would want to hear.

This practice takes you out of your mind and places you in the thoughts of your prospects. If you can write from this enlightened position, you will captivate your audience every time because you will continue to provide valuable information to your readers that offer them a solution to their problems.

5. Personal Stories

This point applies more to a business blog or social media content; however, it is an important tip to remember. Blogs represent a more personal look behind the business brand. On the internet, it is important to create a dynamic of trust between customer and business because your prospects cannot touch or feel the dynamics of your brand behind the invisibility of the computer screen.

The more personal touches you can add without leaving your professionalism behind, the greater affinity you will create in your reader towards your products, your brand and your overall message.

6. Keep it Simple

Depending on your audience, it is advised to keep your content simple and easy to read. Create a nice sentence flow and don’t overburden you readers with excessive technical jargon unless the situation necessitates it.

7. Transparency and Value

Even the most novice reader will notice a piece of content that lacks value and substance. The most compelling pieces are those that were penned by people who were passionate about their products or services and who were intent on solving a need in their industries. If your primary goal is to provide valuable information to your readers, regardless of your writing skill level, your readers will respect your content and enjoy it.

When asked what the key for creating captivating content is for her readers, Gennia Holder, social media marketing expert of Time to Go Virtual states, “The key is listening to your customers, their questions, concerns and challenges… It’s not about you. Your audience doesn’t care how wonderful you or your product is. They are looking to get their needs met”

Are you creating captivating content?

By practicing these seven tips, you can create compelling content and attract more people to your brand. The power of great content transcends culture and race and can attract a larger following to your business.  Above all, remember to write from a place of integrity and a genuine desire to attract an audience for their good. If you do, your content will hit the mark every time.