Content is not only what drives search engines, it’s also what drives people to buy. Regardless of whether that content comes from a good sales pitch by a competent salesperson, or whether it was a great picture in a magazine or a recommendation from a friend, we always receive information about a product before we purchase.

Of course, we are all individuals as well, and react to different kinds of content in different ways. Some of us hate being bothered by salespeople whereas others love the advice. Some of us like to do a lot of research before buying, whereas others just need a few dot points on a sales page before taking the plunge.

Our job as online business owners is to provide adequate content for all of the different kinds of buyers that exist, so that they can come and purchase our products on their own terms. Whether that’s through a blog (not just for Google, but as a way of giving helpful advice and information for those “researchers” out there), a comparison shopping site, helpful “how to” articles on your site, or brief “to-the-point” information on your product pages themselves. Even your customer support team is providing content.

Unfortunately thanks to the Google monster, the word “content” online has become synonymous with “how can we beat Google” with fake blogs and poorly written articles with keyword spam. The smarter Google becomes, the more these actions will not only be useless, but will actually harm your rankings anyway.

It’s time to refocus on your customers, and provide accurate, well written/spoken content delivered in the manner that they as individuals are seeking. Only once you have nailed this can you be content with your content.