Writing people-first content material: A course of and template


Need to rank extremely in 2024 and past? Then, it’s essential to create what Google calls “useful, dependable, people-first content material.”

On this article, I’ll define a course of that exhibits you precisely how to try this and supply a easy template you’ll be able to fill out to take your content material to the following degree. 


On the time of writing, Google is doing a little main spring cleansing to deal with a few of the spammy, low-quality content material littering the search outcomes

Unsurprisingly, a lot content material is developed from an Website positioning perspective. Google’s newest replace is designed to assist push down a few of this Website positioning-first content material and floor people-first content material. 

Our aim right here ought to be to create well-optimized, people-first content material. Any savvy marketer is aware of you construct belief together with your prospects by being useful and sharing.

A people-first content material course of

Google has a assist web page that gives a number of questions you need to use to overview your current content material to make sure it’s useful, dependable and people-first. Sadly (and paradoxically), this web page isn’t useful when creating new content material. 

As well as, I’ve created a easy course of we use at my company for planning, writing and reviewing new content material that’s people-first and ticks all of Google’s qualitative bins.

To simplify following the steps, right here’s a easy template you’ll be able to fill out as you’re employed by way of the article. Seize a replica of this primary. 

Folks-first content material: A writing course of

What follows is a six-step course of for creating Website positioning-friendly content material that’s folks first. 

As a aspect notice, whereas Google is at conflict with low-quality generic content material, don’t really feel like you’ll be able to’t use AI instruments to assist. Simply make sure you use these generative AI instruments as an Website positioning assistant reasonably than create the entire article for you. 

Step 1: Objectives

What’s your aim for this content material? How does this match into your general Website positioning technique and Website positioning planning

Making a well-considered aim is crucial. The aim is what you might be aiming at. If you’re off the mark right here, you’ll miss the goal regardless of your efforts. 

To strengthen targets, comply with a easy course of referred to as “The 5 Whys.” State your preliminary aim, then ask “why” as much as 5 instances till you have got strengthened and clearly articulated your targets. 


  • Preliminary aim: Write a weblog submit about our eco-friendly kitchen merchandise.
  • Why? To enhance our web site’s rating on Google.
    • First evaluation: I wish to enhance our web site’s rating on Google.
  • Why? As a result of a better rating will result in extra natural visitors to our website.
    • Second evaluation: I need extra natural visitors.
  • Why? As a result of elevated visitors can result in extra buyer engagement and model recognition.
    • Third evaluation: I need elevated buyer engagement and model recognition.
  • Why? This engagement will probably result in increased gross sales and buyer loyalty.
    • Fourth evaluation: I need increased gross sales and buyer loyalty.
  • Why? With elevated gross sales and a loyal buyer base, we will additional our mission to advertise sustainable dwelling and make a bigger constructive environmental impression.
  • Revised aim: Our goal is to create an informative weblog submit about eco-friendly kitchen merchandise that educate customers about kitchen sustainability. It will assist us drive natural visitors to the location, growing engagement and leads. 

Motion merchandise

Define your targets and refine them utilizing The 5 Whys method. Incorporate SMART Website positioning targets to refine and articulate the aims.

Step 2: Reframing in your viewers

You realize what you need, however Google doesn’t care about your targets, solely the satisfaction of its customers. You will need to align your aims with serving to customers whereas connecting them to your enterprise and advertising and marketing mission.

To do that, you’ll be able to make use of “reframing.” Based mostly on Ann Handley’s e-book “Everyone Writes,” it’s a device for shifting views and higher serving our viewers in advertising and marketing.

First, you need to be clear on who your viewers is. Google spells this out:

“Do you have got an current or supposed viewers for your enterprise or website that will discover the content material helpful in the event that they got here on to you?”

Take your preliminary aim and have a look at this out of your viewers’s perspective. Ask, “So what?” and reply with “As a result of…”  Do that train as much as 5 instances.


Your aim: Our goal is to create an informative weblog submit about eco-friendly kitchen merchandise to assist generate leads for our sustainable kitchen merchandise. 

  • So what? All of us must learn to be sustainable in all areas of our lives to assist stop world warming and make sure the planet’s security for future generations. 
  • So what? Studying about sustainability within the kitchen might help you cut back your environmental footprint, result in more healthy dwelling and get monetary savings – good for you and good in your kids. 

Closing aim: The article will present an in depth have a look at how selecting eco-friendly kitchen merchandise results in a more healthy life-style, price financial savings and advantages for the planet. It encourages readers to make sustainable selections of their day by day lives and exhibits them how to try this with our merchandise. 

Motion merchandise

Outline your viewers, question your aim, reframe it from the client’s perspective and clarify the way it helps them. Fill it out within the equipped template. Guarantee you’ll be able to succinctly reply how this helps the reader. 

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Step 3: Exhibit expertise and experience 

The content material you create ought to set up the writer’s expertise and experience in a verifiable manner. Google spells this out for us with the E-E-A-T and, extra particularly, the requirement for “useful, dependable, people-first content material.” 

What makes one thing dependable? Expertise, experience and credibility are good beginning factors. 

Under are key factors to recollect primarily based on Google’s documentation:


Your content material ought to display first-hand expertise and experience. It’s best to present a depth of information by utilizing a services or products or visiting a spot. From a enterprise perspective, it is best to clearly illustrate that you’ve expertise. 


The content material ought to display experience or hyperlink to a web page that does. For example, if your enterprise has accreditations, guarantee they’re seen on the location. If the writer has particular experience, guarantee that is detailed on an writer web page. 

Get your info straight 

Utilizing knowledge for instance your experience is useful, however be certain that any info you employ are 100% right, referenced and don’t include unsubstantiated claims. 

‘About us’ and writer pages

Your website ought to characteristic “About us” and writer pages that increase upon the credibility of the enterprise and the person authors. Hyperlink to those out of your content material. Google mentions these pages particularly, so give it what it desires.

Motion merchandise

Within the people-first content material template, fill out the 4 experience bins masking expertise, experience, fact-checking and about us and writer pages. 

Step 4: Purpose excessive

It’s best to goal to create distinctive content material that’s totally different or higher than elsewhere. Your general Website positioning technique is essential right here, as you desire a motive to face out from the gang, and that ought to circulate by way of your content material advertising and marketing.

Google offers us with 12 factors to overview content material high quality. Nonetheless, we will summarize these into six factors that you need to use to information your content material creation. 

Knowledge and examples

Determine knowledge and examples that assist your article. Embody these, and make sure you cite them appropriately. Keep in mind, folks love stats and having one thing makes your content material linkable (which continues to be crucially essential). 

Add one thing to the dialogue

Search for areas the place you’ll be able to add one thing new to the dialogue, resembling new analysis, reporting or evaluation. This doesn’t need to be difficult. Run a brief survey, however add one thing new to the dialogue so as to add worth to your article. In a nutshell, don’t simply say the identical factor as everybody else! 

Use clear titles

Create clear, descriptive, correct and non-sensational titles summarizing the content material. You may nonetheless optimize however accomplish that sensibly. At all times prioritize folks over Website positioning.

State your sources and add commentary 

When referencing different sources, add worth. Keep away from simply rewriting or restating; attempt to add a singular spin to what’s already there. Use your expertise and experience to take action. You’re an knowledgeable on this subject; your opinion and expertise right here matter. 

Concentrate on high quality and make it simple to share 

Make sure the content material is properly produced. Use AI instruments right here to assist if you want. Don’t take each suggestion. Maintain your voice within the piece. Purpose for one thing of the identical high quality you anticipate in a newspaper or different printed media. 

Motion merchandise

Fill out web page 4 of the template. Don’t fear about discovering one thing for every of those however attempt to make sure you carry one thing new. 

Dig deeper: Mastering content material high quality: The last word information

Step 5: Write 

In some respects, that is the straightforward bit. Upon getting accomplished the analysis steps above, you’ll know the angle from which you might be coming. I like to recommend copying your general aim on the prime of your doc so you need to use that as your North Star! 

The steps you’re taking now will differ relying by yourself writing model, however the important thing right here is that planning units up success. 

My strategy is one thing like this:

  • Resolve on the format (weblog submit, record, stats, and so on.).
  • Define bullet factors of the sections.
  • Work on a really tough first draft (simply write – don’t cease to edit).
  • Stroll away for just a few hours, not less than.
  • Write the second draft.
  • Stroll away and sleep on it.
  • Evaluate utilizing Google’s query record.
  • Write the third draft.
  • Editor overview.
  • Tweak and publish.

I typically assume crucial facet right here is to sleep on it. In the event you can and if, like me, you might be becoming in writing round working your enterprise, then it may possibly make sense to do the massive steps over totally different days. 

  • Day 1: Plan and bullet factors
  • Day 2: Tough first draft
  • Day 3: Second draft 
  • Day 4: Third draft, edits and publish

A key aspect for me is the sleeping on it issue. If you end up writing like this, you might be typically making an attempt to resolve an issue and your planning and first drafts get you to date. 

However then, once you sleep on it, your unconscious begins to work by way of all these little bits that aren’t fairly there but. 

Then, once you work in your second and third drafts, you’ll strengthen the article a lot extra (and it’s a lot simpler). 

Dig deeper: 25 tricks to optimize your content material for folks and serps

Step 6: Evaluate

At this stage, if you wish to be completely sure you have got nailed this, you’ll be able to revisit Google’s Useful Content material assist web page to self-assess your content material.

Having performed the planning course of, this ought to be orders of magnitude simpler. Beginning your content material creation with planning and ending with a qualitative overview will strengthen your strategy and enhance your outcomes. 

Web page expertise and Website positioning

One final level of significance: the content material ought to be housed on a website that gives a stable web page expertise. 

  • Your net design and Website positioning ought to be dialed in.
  • It’s best to have inexperienced lights in your Core Net Vitals.
  • Your website ought to run over HTTPS.
  • You shouldn’t present too many advertisements (if any, do you have to be a enterprise promoting companies).

These are the fundamentals, however Google does have a assist web page if you happen to want to dive in additional.

Crafting people-first content material: A blueprint for Website positioning success

Whereas there’s a number of change and doomsaying in the intervening time, content material advertising and marketing with Website positioning continues to be a viable tactic for genuine consultants who might help the audience. 

Google has articulated what they’re searching for. By fastidiously reviewing the assistance pages on E-E-A-T and creating useful content material, we will construct a course of that ensures we’re aiming at precisely what Google is aiming at (that’s, actual Website positioning that stands the check of time). 

This dogged deal with the tip person is actually what advertising and marketing is all about and why Google is such an enormous firm. Entering into this mindset and making it the guts of your Website positioning philosophy will solely enhance your outcomes.

Be sure you decide some easy Website positioning KPIs to measure your success and hold targeted on creating content material that helps you whereas serving to your viewers.  

Opinions expressed on this article are these of the visitor writer and never essentially Search Engine Land. Employees authors are listed right here.



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