Web content development
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Web content development is the process of researching, writing, gathering, organizing, and editing information for publication on websites. Website content may consist of prose, graphics, pictures, recordings, movies, or other digital assets that could be distributed by a hypertext transfer protocol server, and viewed by a web browser.
Content developers and web developers
When the World Wide Web began, web developers either developed online content themselves, or modified existing documents and coded them into hypertext markup language (HTML). In time, the field of website development came to encompass many technologies, so it became difficult for website developers to maintain so many different skills. Content developers are specialized website developers who have content generation skills such as graphic design, multimedia development, professional writing, and documentation. They can integrate content into new or existing websites without using information technology skills such as script language programming and database programming.
Content developers or technical content developers can also be technical writers who produce technical documentation that helps people understand and use a product or service. This documentation includes online help, manuals, white papers, design specifications, developer guides, deployment guides, release notes, etc.
Search Engine Optimization
Content developers may also be search engine optimization specialists, or internet marketing professionals. High quality, unique content is what search engines are looking for. Content development specialists, therefore, have a very important role to play in the search engine optimization process. One issue currently plaguing the world of web content development is keyword-stuffed content which are prepared solely for the purpose of manipulating search engine rankings. The effect is that content is written to appeal to search engine (algorithms) rather than human readers. Search engine optimization specialists commonly submit content to article directories to build their website's authority on any given topic. Most article directories allow visitors to republish submitted content with the agreement that all links are maintained. This has become a method of search engine optimization for many websites today. If written according to SEO copywriting rules, the submitted content will bring benefits to the publisher (free SEO-friendly content for a webpage) as well as to the author (a hyperlink pointing to his/her website, placed on an SEO-friendly webpage).
There are numerous methods to create website content. However, since the internet had over 250 million websites in 2010 and nearly 2 billion websites in 2018,that a website would have to either specialize in specific niche audience, have original content that stood out from its peers, or present common information in a new way, thereby making it standout among its peers. But the development of high quality web content can help website gain an audience and increase search engine rankings.
Step one would be to determine the type of site you want to develop (and have a good understanding of why). John December offers the following first step for content development:
- “Because the content of a Web site is the substance that draws and keeps an audience, the composition of your content should follow directly from your stated Web site purpose and audience. As a first step, you can prepare a set of content features that relate to your audience's activities, interests, and concerns. For example, a site about a school science fair might list rules of the fair, the location and details about the upcoming events, statements by judges, and descriptions of past winning projects.”
In order to generate more content, some content writers and web developers have turned to article spinners. Article spinners allow users to replace words in a pre-existing article via a thesaurus-like interface. After replacing a significant portion of the words, it is thought that the new content will pass as an original work. "Spinning" an article is a common method for web developers who lack the ability to write original content. However, some believe the act of spinning articles to increase content may actually be bad for a website in the long run. 
Even more advanced content generation software now exists which can create nearly endless amounts of non-duplicate content. Unlike article spinners, which merely change single words but don't alter the overall outline of an article, content generation software pulls randomly from multiple sources, creating different articles with different sub-topics on each pass.
New Content Types
Web content is no longer restricted to text. Search engines now index audio/visual media, including video, images, PDFs, and other elements of a web page. Website owners sometimes use content protection networks to scan for plagiarized content.
- Web content
- Content marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Content designer
- Content management
- Content adaptation
- Professional writing
- Technical writer
- "Internet 2010 in numbers". Pingdom. 12 January 2011.
- "Total Number of Websites". Internet Live Stats. 22 May 2018.
- "Eight Good Reasons Why Spinning Articles is Bad for your Website". Search Engine Journal. 14 December 2011.