Quick guides are a great form of content to increase your site’s presence, providing visitors with helpful and relevant information they can easily sift through. Whether you want to learn more about a specific step or the entire process of an endeavor altogether, quick guides serve the purpose.
In addition to their ideal use, quick guides have ample potential in regard to enhancing a site’s presence, both through viral-friendly appeal and search engine optimization (SEO) benefits. There’s a guide that can be relevant for any niche, whether it’s how to do an oil change or how to create a home garden. Regardless of your site’s topic, implementing quick guides is always worth considering.
Here are seven reasons why quick guides are beneficial for sites:
Quick guides can either be a step-by-step process, such as in the case of an oil change, or simply useful information that can aid in certain steps or methods — like a guide on growing vegetables in general. The format flexibility gives the concept of quick guides eclectic potential, in that there’s really no niche that wouldn’t benefit.
The flexibility of quick guides allows them to serve as additional information, often in the case of specifics. For example, the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Southern Wisconsin includes a guide on their site — the content here is the key, as it reviews the breed in-depth and lets potential buyers know what to look for in the breed and reputable breeders of said breed.
The formatting itself could be adjusted with smaller paragraphs to break up the text and improve readability, but formatting aside, this content shows experience on the part of the club, as well as informing potential buyers with more relevant information. It’s a win-win on both sides, as quick guides often are.
Increased traffic means an increased presence for your site. Traffic is often dictated largely by search engines and how well certain keywords are doing for you. Many small websites struggle with achieving first-page status with relevant keywords that can help people find their site. Fortunately, quick guides are a great way to implement specific keywords you’d like to target.
A car repair shop, for example, can write a comprehensive oil change quick guide with the phrase “quick guide to an oil change” mentioned several times. Pennzoil’s guide appears on the first page among Google results for the phrase, and it undoubtedly expands Pennzoil’s image and brings in new customers.
Quick guides also provide a great opportunity to showcase why your product or service makes a specific process much easier. This guide to soundproofing, for example, provides thorough information on soundproofing and sound absorption, while also recommending specific products like Soundproof Cow’s own acoustic foam and Quiet Board™ panels.
They manage to provide free useful information for anyone interested, while also making a seamless and useful product suggestion that benefits the expansion of their site and business.
Another thing many guides get right is the customer-question format.
Quick guides that break up content with headers that ask specific common questions, like “Step 1: What Type of Product Do You Need?” and “Step 2: What of Where Are You Trying to Soundproof?” mean the reader knows you will answer that very question in the content.
In addition to this question-based heading approach also having SEO keyword benefits, this easy-to-understand method addresses the reader directly. Readers find answers to one or several questions they had — which is likely why they visited the guide in the first place.
If your guide directly addresses what the visitor is seeking, they are likely to be hooked by the resource, and consequently, more swayed by any product or service recommendations that guide makes.
It’s entirely up to you how advanced you want your quick guide to be. Ideally you would like the average consumer to find use from it, as that is often the demographic to focus on in the hopes of expansion. Some niches may appeal more to connoisseurs, like an advanced quick guide for experienced poker players regarding hand forecasting, though generally it’s up to the site and its audience goals.
The flexibility of quick guides and for sites to appeal to either the average consumer or a specific niche, or even both, makes them a ripe tool for growing presence.
Quick guides are generally easier to write than coming up with engaging content for your site on your own. A big reason why is because quick guides are often in response to the most common consumer questions, which means the idea portion of what to write about is already settled on.
These questions are something a website owner within a niche is likely to be well aware of. As a result, coming up with a quick guide’s topic and information shouldn’t be very difficult for experts in that topic.
For example, this quick guide to astrology uses some of the most-commonly asked questions in the astrology field as a starting point. If those reading a quick guide can have a question answered fairly quickly and effectively, they are likely to keep reading and gain trust in the site.
When someone is trying to get into a hobby, it makes sense that a quick guide online is a place they’ll start. They likely want to see everything the hobby entails, in terms of what to expect, purchase and do.
If a site provides an excellently comprehensive quick guide on a topic to someone who is considering taking up that hobby, it provides that person with a sense of trust in that original source, potentially setting up the site as the person’s future go-to for anything relating to that activity.
Muscle & Fitness’ Starter’s Guide to Working Out is a good example of this, presenting a non-pretentious introductory guide to working out, with day-by-day suggestions and mental solutions that can make a big difference. If someone is interested in working out and finds benefit from that guide before eventually becoming fully committed to the field, they will likely become a longtime fan of that source.
Quick guides have a variety of benefits for increasing a site’s presence. They’re a flexible and lead-engaging form of content that can fit any site and provide useful information to all audience types.
Lexie Lu is a designer and writer. She loves researching trends in the web and graphic design industry. She writes weekly on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner.