The mustachioed impresario of Seattle-based Moz, our own native son of SEO software (+ strategies + link building), Rand Fishkin, aka “The Wizard of Moz,” has minted a new term that has been reverberating across the Web — from Seattle with love!
The term is “10X Content.” Rand first coined it in a “Whiteboard Friday,” the Moz firm’s weekly video chalk talk on the X’s and O’s of what makes for high ranking search visibility.
As Rand explains it, 10X Content refers to “Content that is 10 times better than the best result that can currently be found in the search results for a given keyword phrase or topic.”
One of the characteristics of search engine ranking is that it is not absolute. You do not have to create a perfect Web page to rank among Google or Bing’s “Top-10 blue links,” or the more coveted top 3-4 positions “above the fold.” You only have to create a page that is more perfect than the one(s) that appear above you on the “SERP,” the Search Engine Results Page.
While there are a great many factors that contribute to search engine supremacy, and Moz publishes a list of Search Engine Ranking Factors every year, the single factor that Google sings most loudly about is “great content.” Merely “good and unique”content has gone the way of Jeeves, the Ask.com butler. It’s distinctive, it’s well-suited, but it just doesn’t cut it anymore.
So what is the recipe for producing “10X Content” that will outrank your competition?
Your 10X Content page …
• Provides a uniquely positive user experience through the user interface, visuals, layout, fonts, patterns, etc.
• Delivers content that is some substantive combination of high-quality, trustworthy, useful, interesting, and remarkable
• Is considerably different in scope and detail from other works on similar topics
• Loads quickly and is usable on any device or browser
• Creates an emotional response of awe, surprise, joy, anticipation, and/or admiration
• Has achieved an impressive quantity of amplification (through shares on social networks and/or links)
• Solves a problem or answers a question by providing comprehensive, accurate, exceptional information or resources.
While not all of the above are required, some combination of them should be present in each of the pieces that fall under this label.
And speaking of search engine ranking factors, while Google keeps its “secret formula” on the down-low, something that even Moz’s reputation for “radical transparency” cannot fully expose, the number of meaningful links that point to a Web domain still outrank any other SEO criteria.
Indeed, “Open Site Explorer” was developed by Moz in 2010 to explore what it referred to at the time as the Web’s Linkscape. Open Site Explorer is the firm’s index, or catalogue, of millions of links across the Web. Note: It’s a searchable database of links, as compared to content.
The point is that “10X content” should attract those meaningful links to a Website if it is truly great. Think of the formula “E (expansive links) = MC (meaningful content) squared. And by “meaningful links” we mean the links that originate from highly relevant, authoritative Web sites in the same subject category or industry (.edu’s and .govs still carry a lot of water), compared to links from friends or neighbors.
By aiming high, for (figuratively speaking) “10X or ten times” the quality of content you find in your category on the search engines, your links, ranking and, most importantly, the quantity and quality of your Web traffic will multiply! [24×7]