9 Common Blocks to Creativity (and How to Overcome Them)

Creativity can be fickle. One moment you’re on a roll, and the next, you can’t produce anything of value. This is especially frustrating when you know you have something great inside of you just waiting to come out, but it’s just not happening.

Many common blocks to creativity can prevent us from being as creative as we’d like. Here, we’ll talk about some of these blocks and how to overcome them with practical and proven methods.

What Are Blocks to Creativity and What Causes Them?

If you’ve ever felt creatively stuck, you’re not alone. Creative blocks are common for creative professionals of all stripes, from writers and entrepreneurs to painters and filmmakers.

There’s no one-size-fits-all definition of a creative block. Still, most experts agree that it involves a temporary inability to generate or bring new ideas to fruition. Creative blocks can be frustrating and discouraging, but they don’t have to be permanent. Understanding the root cause of your blockage can help you break through it.

There are several different factors that can contribute to a creative block. One common cause is simply burnout. It can be tough to keep your ideas fresh if you’ve been working on a project for a long time without a break.

Another common cause of creative blocks is perfectionism. If you’re constantly striving for perfection in your work, you easily get bogged down in the details and lose sight of the big picture.

There are many other possible causes of creative blocks, including psychological factors like anxiety and depression. Once you understand what’s causing your block, you can begin to find ways to overcome it.

9 Blocks to Creativity and What to Do About Them

We all dream of days when ideas flow freely, and we’re constantly churning out masterpiece after masterpiece; unfortunately, that’s not always how it goes. For many of us, creativity is hard work. Ideas don’t come easy; even when they do, we struggle to bring them to life.

Let’s look at nine common creativity blocks to creativity and what you can do about them.

blocks to creativity

Overthinking Things

Overthinking things is a major and most common creativity block. This is because when you overthink something, you tend to get bogged down in the details and lose sight of the big picture. As a result, you can feel stuck and unsure of what to do next.

There are a few ways to overcome this problem. First, take a step back and look at the situation differently. This can help you see things in a new light and develop fresh ideas.

Second, don’t be afraid to experiment. Trying new things is often the best way to break out of a rut and come up with something truly original.

Finally, don’t be too hard on yourself. Creativity is often about trial and error, so don’t be discouraged if your first few attempts don’t work out. Just keep at it, and you’re sure to come up with something great.

Seeking Perfection

There is little to no proof that perfectionism results in a fruitful result. Instead, it is a significant cause of creativity block. After all, if you’re constantly striving for perfection, it can be tough to take risks and try new things.

writers block

But the good news is that there are ways to overcome this obstacle.

Accept that perfect doesn’t exist: This may seem like an obvious point, but it’s worth repeating. Perfection is an unattainable goal, so don’t beat yourself up if you don’t achieve it. Instead, focus on doing your best and strive for excellence instead of perfection.

Permit yourself to fail: If you’re afraid of failing, you’ll never take risks necessary for true creativity. So give yourself permission to fail and know it’s okay if you don’t always succeed.

Don’t compare yourself to others: Comparison is the thief of joy, as the saying goes. You’re setting yourself up for disappointment when you compare yourself to others. Everyone has unique talents and gifts, so focus on developing your own instead of comparing yourself to others.

Other effective ways to help you overcome the obstacle of perfectionism and unleash your creativity include:

  • Being patient
  • Brainstorming
  • Taking breaks
  • Trusting instincts
  • Getting organized

Feeling Overwhelmed

One of the biggest obstacles to creativity is feeling overwhelmed by everything we need to do. We can feel so bogged down by our to-do lists and responsibilities that we can’t even imagine taking on anything new or creative.

Try the following things to overcome the feeling of being overwhelmed:

  • Try to break down your task into smaller, more manageable pieces. Sometimes, all it takes is getting started on something to get the creative juices flowing.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you’re feeling really stuck, it can be helpful to talk to someone else about your project.
  • Lastly, make sure to schedule some time for creative endeavors. If you don’t set aside specific time to work on your project, it’s easy for other things to crowd it out. Carve out an hour or two each week to dedicate to being creative, and stick to it.

Your Creative Habits are Not Working

We all have our creative habits. Some of us like to brainstorm in a group, while others prefer to work independently. While there’s no wrong way to be creative, sometimes our habits that get our creative juices flowing can get in the way of our productivity.

First, take a step back and evaluate why your creative habits are not working. Is it because you’re not making time for them? Or is it because you’re trying to do too much at once? Once you identify the problem, you can start to find a solution. 

If you’re not making time for your creative habits, try scheduling them into your day. Set aside a specific time each day to work on your project.

Find the time that brings out your creativity. Some people work best in the morning, while others find creativity at night. Experiment until you find what works best for you.

Unhealthy eating and sleeping habits can also cause a creative slump. Make sure you’re taking care of yourself by eating healthy foods and getting enough sleep.

Disrupting Life Events or Changes

When we face a significant life event or change, it can often lead to blocked creativity and imagination. Whether it’s a move to a new city, the birth of a child, or the loss of a loved one, these events can throw us off balance and make it difficult to tap into our creative side.

But there are ways to overcome these blocks and get your creativity flowing again.

Give yourself time to adjust: It can take time to get used to a new situation or major change. Don’t expect to be creative immediately–give yourself a few days or weeks to settle in before trying to be creative.

Find a creative outlet: Once you’ve adjusted, find an outlet for your creativity. This could be anything from painting to writing to playing music. Doing something creative can help you feel more connected to your imagination and can also be a great way to relax and de-stress.

Talk to others: Sometimes, talking to someone else about your creative ideas can help you get unstuck. Brainstorming with a friend or family member can give you new perspectives on approaching your project.

Take a break: If you’re feeling stuck, take a break from whatever you’re working on. Step away from your project for a day and come back with fresh eyes. You might be surprised at how much easier it is to be creative when you’ve had some time away from it.

Believing You Are Not Creative

This is a big one. So many people think they are not creative because they don’t consider themselves “artistic.” But creativity isn’t just about making art – it’s about thinking outside the box, being resourceful, and coming up with new ideas.

Here are some common beliefs that can hold you back and how to reframe them:

“I’m not creative because I don’t have any good ideas.”

One way to overcome this is to brainstorm with someone else – two heads are better than one. Or, try using prompts to jumpstart your thinking.

“I’m not creative because I’m not ‘right-brained.'”

This is a myth. There’s no such thing as a “right-brained” or “left-brained” person. Creativity comes from both sides of the brain.

“I’m not creative because I can’t do things the ‘right’ way.”

There is no one “right” way to be creative. The whole point of being creative is to think outside the box, so don’t let perfectionism get in the way. If you’re feeling stuck, it’s okay to experiment and try new things.

“I’m not creative because I don’t have time.”

Creativity doesn’t have to be time-consuming. If you only have a few minutes, try a quick brainstorming session or take a walk to clear your head and get some fresh ideas.

Too Much Critique While You Work

It can be tough to get anything done if you’re constantly second-guessing your creative choices. Whether you’re worried about what others will think of your work or unsure of yourself, too much critique can zap your productivity.

The best way to combat this problem is to set limits on how much you allow yourself to critique your work as you’re working on it. Decide how long you will work on something before you start critiquing it, and stick to that timeline.

For example, you might give yourself an hour to work on a project without pausing to evaluate it, or you might set a goal of finishing a certain number of pieces before you start critiquing them.

Another helpful strategy is to set aside time at the end of your work session to reflect on what you’ve done and make any necessary changes. That way, you can focus on being creative most of the time, switch gears, and be more analytical when revising.

Communication Barriers

When we cannot communicate effectively, sharing our ideas and getting feedback can be difficult. This can lead to frustration and a feeling of being stuck.

There are a few things you can do to overcome communication barriers:

Be clear about what you want to say: This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to get caught up in our thoughts and lose track of what we’re trying to communicate.

Listen actively: This means paying attention to what the other person is saying and not just waiting for your turn to speak.

Ask questions: Ask questions if you’re unsure you understand something or want to know more about an idea.

Repeat back what you’ve heard: This can help ensure you’ve understood correctly and show interest in what the other person is saying.

Seek feedback: Asking for feedback can help ensure that your ideas are being communicated effectively. It can also teach you more about how others perceive your ideas.

Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

There are many reasons why we get stuck in our comfort zones. Sometimes it’s because we’re afraid of change or failure. Other times, it’s because we just don’t know how to get out of our rut.

If you’re feeling stuck, here are some ideas to help you get out of your comfort zone and start being more creative:

  • Set some goals
  • Take baby steps
  • Be prepared to fail
  • Embrace your inner child
  • Get out of your head
  • Be persistent
  • Challenge yourself

Over To You

No matter what your creative block looks like, it’s important to remember that it can be overcome. Everyone has the potential to be creative and express themselves. All it takes is a little bit of effort, practice, and willingness to break out of our comfort zones. Challenge yourself, take risks, and don’t be afraid to fail—you may surprise yourself with what you can achieve. 

What Is Anchor Text in SEO and How Can It Be Optimized?

Google analyzes various factors on a web page to better understand it, determine what it’s focus is and rank it. While there are hundreds of ranking factors used in its complex algorithms, one of the most important ones you can focus on is anchor text.

But what exactly is anchor text, and how can it be optimized for search engines?

What is Anchor Text?

Anchor text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink. It’s a crucial part of on-page SEO because it tells crawlers to identify what the linked-to page is about, allowing it to understand the page better. It is often underlined and usually appears in blue but can be of any color according to the website design.

How to Add Anchor Text

When adding anchor text to your content, it’s essential to use keywords that accurately describe the page you’re linking to. This will help search engines and readers understand what the linked page is about and improve your click-through rate.

For example, if you have a blog post about the best cameras for vlogging. In that post, you can link to a page on your website that sells cameras. The anchor text, in that case, could be “camera equipment for vlogging” or “vlogging cameras for sale.”

Using keyword-rich anchor text is also a good idea if you’re linking to an external website. However, you’ll also want to ensure that the website you’re linking to is relevant to your content.

For example, if you’re writing a blog post about travel photography, you should link to a website that sells camera equipment. But if that website doesn’t sell travel-related camera equipment, it will not be as relevant to your readers.

It’s also important to avoid linking to competing domains and pages when adding external links. You wouldn’t want to give away a free backlink to your competitors, right?

How Anchor Text Impacts SEO

Anchor text is essential for on-page SEO because it helps Google understand what a web page is about. Including keywords in your anchor text tells Google that those words are important and relevant to the page you’re linking to. 

If you’re trying to rank a page for a specific keyword, it’s recommended to use it in your anchor text. That way, when Google sees that keyword in your anchor text, they will know that it’s relevant to the page you’re linking to, and they’ll be more likely to rank that page for that keyword. 

Including keywords in your anchor text is just one of many factors that Google takes into account when determining where to rank a page, but it’s an important one to keep in mind.

The 8 Different Types of Anchor Text

Below, we highlight eight types of anchor texts for use in different circumstances.

Branded Links

The first type of anchor text is branded links. This is when your brand or company name is used as the link text. For example, Spacebar Collective’s branded anchor text would be “Spacebar Collective.

Site Name

The second type of anchor text is site name links. This is when your website or blog name is used as the link text. For example, the site name link for Spacebar Collective would be “SpacebarCollective.com“.

Exact Keyword Match

The exact keyword match consists of the keyword phrase you are targeting used as the link text. If you target the keyword phrase “running shoes,” your exact keyword match anchor text would be “running shoes.”

Partial Keyword Match

Partial keyword match anchor text is similar to exact keyword match, but instead of using the exact keyword phrase, you would use a variation of that phrase. For example, if you are targeting the keyword phrase “running shoes,” your partial keyword match anchor text could be “best running shoes” or “cheap running shoes.”

Related Keywords

Related keywords are similar to the exact keyword match but not exact matches. For example, if you are targeting the keyword phrase “running shoes,” related keywords would be “joggers,” “athletic shoes,” and “tennis shoes.”

Navigational Links

Generic links are unanchored links that do not have any specific link text. They usually just say, “click here,” “read more,” or something similar.

URL “Naked” Links

URL “naked” links are when the URL itself is used as the link text. For example, the Spacebar Collective website is www.Spacebarcollective.com. So, the URL “naked” link would be www.spacebarcollective.com.

Article Title Link

Article title linking is when the title of an article or blog post is used as the link text. For example, if the title of a Spacebar Collective blog post is “The History of Spacebar Collective,” the article title link would be “The History of Spacebar Collective.”

Optimizing Anchor Texts for SEO

Having strong on-page SEO is a big portion of where you rank on search engines. Optimizing anchor text is an essential step to achieving higher rankings. Here are three steps to help you achieve a better ranking.

Include Anchor Links Naturally

Including anchor links naturally can be tricky, but getting them right is vital to improving your website’s search engine ranking. Here are a few tips to help you include anchor links naturally:

Use keyword-rich anchor text: If you want your website to rank higher for certain keywords, you’ll need to use those keywords in your anchor text. However, don’t go overboard – using too many keywords in your anchor text can hurt your ranking. Instead, focus on using a few relevant keywords throughout your content and ensure that they flow naturally with the rest of your text.

Make sure the links make sense: Your anchor text should always make sense in the context of your content. Don’t just randomly insert links into your text–make sure they fit in seamlessly with the rest of your writing.

If you’re unsure how to do this, consider using a tool like Google AdWords Keyword Planner. This tool can help you find relevant keywords and phrases to use in your content and give you an idea of how often people are searching for those terms.

Use different anchor texts for different keywords: If you’re targeting multiple keywords with your anchor text, make sure you use different ones for each keyword. This helps avoid over-optimizing your anchor text, which can hurt your ranking. Instead, focus on using relevant keywords and phrases throughout your content to ensure that your website is optimized for all of them.

Make Sure Anchor Texts Match and Are Relevant

It’s important to ensure that your anchor text is relevant to the page you’re linking to. If your anchor text doesn’t match the page you’re linking to, it could hurt your SEO, increase your bounce rate, and lose your potential customers. Here’s how to make sure your anchor text is relevant and optimizes your SEO:

Use keyword-rich anchor text: If you want your website to rank for a certain keyword, use that keyword in your anchor text. This tells Google what your website is about and helps you rank for that keyword.

Ensure your anchor text is relevant to the page you’re linking to: If you’re linking to a page about blog writing, your anchor text should be relevant to that page. Using unrelated anchor text could hurt your SEO.

Use descriptive anchor text: Descriptive anchor text tells users and search engines what the linked-to page is about. For example, if you’re linking to a page about internal links for SEO, your anchor text could be “internal links for SEO,” “optimizing internal linking,” or “internal links best practices.” This helps users and search engines understand what the linked-to page is about.

Avoid using generic anchor text: Generic anchor text is unhelpful to users and doesn’t give search engines any information about the linked-to page. Examples of generic anchor text include “click here,” “read more,” and “www.” Stick to using descriptive anchor text that’s relevant to the linked-to page.

Use different anchor texts for different pages: Using the exact anchor text for every link on your website looks spammy to search engines and isn’t helpful to users. Vary your anchor text so that it’s always relevant and descriptive.

Don’t Overdo It

It’s essential to focus on creating quality content relevant to your target audience when optimizing your website for SEO. One of the most common mistakes made by website owners is over-optimizing their anchor text to improve their search engine rankings.

If you stuff your anchor text with too many keywords, it will be flagged as spam by Google. This can hurt your rankings and send your website into a tailspin from which it may never recover.

Here are a few tips for using anchor text without over-optimizing:

Use keyword-rich anchor text sparingly: If you must use a keyword in your anchor text, ensure it’s relevant to the page you’re linking to and doesn’t appear too often on the page. A good rule of thumb is to use your keywords in no more than 2% of your total anchors.

Don’t use the same anchor text all the time. Mix things up by using different anchor text for different links. For example, if you’re linking to your home page, you might use the anchor text “click here,” “visit our website,” or “learn more.”

Use brand names and URLs. In addition to using natural language, you can also help your anchors look more natural by using your brand name or website URL as anchor text. For example, if your website is www.example.com, you could use the anchor text “example” or “www.example.com.”

Key Takeaways

We hope this article helped you understand anchor text’s importance and how it can be optimized. Here is what we covered in this article:

  • Anchor text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink. It tells search engines what the linked-to page is about to understand the page better.
  • There are eight different types of anchor texts: branded links, site names, exact keyword match, partial keyword match, related keywords, generic links, URL “Naked” links, and article title links.
  • To optimize anchor text for SEO, include anchor texts naturally, ensure anchor texts match and are relevant, and don’t over-optimize anchor text.

What Is Cornerstone Content and Why Is It So Important?

Over 65% of marketers report that content marketing generates leads, while 72% of marketers say that content marketing increases engagement.

If you ask SEOs about their #1 content marketing tip, they’ll likely mention cornerstone content.

In this article, we’ll explain what cornerstone content is, why it’s so important, and how you can use it to increase leads and engagement.

What Is Cornerstone Content?

Cornerstone content is the most important content that should be featured on your website, blog, or other online presence. It is content that defines your brand and sets it apart from competitors. Cornerstone content generally includes topics that are essential to what you offer and serves as a foundation for everything else you produce. Examples include long-form blog content, about pages, product descriptions, and informational articles.

Ideally, your cornerstone content should be meticulously comprehensive, covering all aspects of the topic at hand. It should also be evergreen to ensure it remains relevant to visitors for a long time.

Cornerstone content can either be a blog or a webpage, but it is typically found in the form of a blog post several thousand words in length. Whichever type of content you choose, it should be well-researched and regularly updated to remain relevant.

Now that you know what cornerstone content is, let’s talk about why it’s important for SEO.

Cornerstone Content and SEO: Why Is it Important?

Cornerstone content plays a significant role in an SEO strategy. This is because it’s hard to rank highly for popular keywords. It’s often the case that you’ll have to create content that is more comprehensive and longer than the average blog post or webpage.

By creating cornerstone content, you’ll be able to target multiple keywords and ensure that your content is of the highest quality. This will help you to rank better in search engine results pages and ultimately attract more organic traffic.

Cornerstone content also helps you build backlinks naturally. By creating comprehensive, useful, and evergreen content, other websites will likely link back to it.

Another great benefit of cornerstone content is that it helps build your brand authority in the SERPs and the industry. When you provide your audience with well-researched content, they will recognize your brand as a trusted source of information that they return to for more.

Cornerstone Content That Search Engines Love: 5 Best Practices

The following are five best practices for creating cornerstone content that search engines and your audience will love:

Decide Your Content Topic and Type

The first step is to decide on the topic of your cornerstone content and its type (blog, article, landing page, etc.). This will provide you with the road map and the framework to create comprehensive content that is useful to your audience.

The best article is one that solves the problems of your audience. So, put yourself in your audience’s shoes, and think about their primary questions and problems. Then, use those as topics for your cornerstone content.

Asking yourself the following questions will help you decide what you want to cover in the article:

  1. What are the questions my audience is asking? What are the problems my audience might be facing?
  2. Are there any problems you still need to cover and are confident you can answer? Do you have data or case studies to back up your claims?

These questions will help you determine the type of content you should create and how comprehensive it needs to be.

Keyword Research

keyword research for cornerstone content

Once you’ve decided on the topic of your cornerstone content, it’s time to perform keyword research. Keyword research is essential for SEO and helps ensure that your content targets the right keywords.

You can use a variety of keyword research tools to find keywords. We recommend targeting a mix of long-tail keywords (keywords with more than four words) and short-tail keywords. This way, you can ensure that your content targets the keywords you want to rank for.

Create Value-Packed Content

Now that you’ve decided on the topic and done your keyword research, it’s time to create your cornerstone content. Your content should be well-researched, comprehensive, and value-packed.

You should include as much information as possible, back up your claims with data, and cite reputable sources. You should also strive to provide readers with practical takeaways they can apply to their businesses.

Here are a few tips for writing excellent cornerstone content:

  • Use visuals like charts, diagrams, and images to make your content more attractive.
  • Make sure your content is well-structured with headers and subheaders.
  • Make sure your content is error-free and follows on-page SEO best practices.
  • Avoid using jargon, and make sure your content is easy to read.
  • Keep the sentences and paragraphs short.

Format for On-Page SEO

Once you’ve written your cornerstone content, you must ensure it is formatted well for SEO. This means that you should include the targeted keywords in your title, headings, and throughout the body of the content.

You should also include relevant internal links to other pages on your website and ensure that your content is structured correctly with HTML tags. Additionally, adding relevant images and videos to the content will make it more engaging and help it stand out.

Promote and Update Regularly

Once your content is published, you should keep promoting it to drive more traffic and increase its reach. You can promote your content through social media, email marketing, and other mediums.

You should also update the content regularly to ensure that it is accurate and up-to-date. Let’s say that you have written an SEO article. You can include updates when Google releases a new algorithm update or shares new insights on optimizing for SEO.

This will help you maintain a good relationship with your audience, as they will appreciate your effort to provide quality content.

Key Takeaways

Cornerstone content is the foundation of your content marketing strategy. It helps you answer your audience’s questions and establish yourself as an authority in your field.

To create successful cornerstone content:

  • Identify the topic and type of content you want to create. Your content should answer questions that your target audience is asking.
  • Perform keyword research to ensure you are targeting the right keywords. Long-tail keywords have more volume and less competition, but we recommend targeting short-tail keywords.
  • Create comprehensive and value-packed content that is well-researched and structured. Use images and videos to make it more attractive, and make sure to back your claims with data.
  • Optimize for SEO by including the targeted keywords in the title, headings, and throughout the body of the content.
  • Promote and update your content regularly to ensure it stays up-to-date with the latest changes in your field.

How to Deal With Bad Reviews From Customers in 2023

In today’s digital world, knowing how to deal with bad reviews as a company has become an increasingly powerful factor in determining success. Reviews are also an essential part of both off-page SEO and local SEO.

According to recent studies, 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, and 93% of customers read up to ten reviews before making a purchase. With these figures in mind, businesses must know how to deal with bad reviews. 

This article will explore the best strategies for handling negative customer feedback and building a positive reputation online. 

How to Deal with Bad Reviews Like a Pro

Your brand is like a baby to you—it needs to be nurtured, cared for, and protected. But what do you do when the reviews start rolling in, and they’re not the most ideal?

In 2023, how you respond to a bad review will be more critical than ever. Consumers are savvier and more dissatisfied than ever, so your response needs to be top-notch.

Here’s how to deal with bad reviews:

Respond Quickly and Thoughtfully to Negative Reviews

Responding quickly and respectfully when a customer leaves a negative review is important. Acknowledge the customer’s concerns and do your best to resolve the issue. Try to put yourself in the customer’s shoes and take ownership of the problem, even if you disagree with the customer.

Keep in mind that defending your product here will not help your cause. Instead, stay focused on helping the customer with their issue.

Responding publicly to negative reviews can help you to maintain your reputation, as it shows potential customers that you take all feedback seriously and care about giving them the best experience. 

Acknowledge the Complaint

Your response should always acknowledge the complaint. This shows that you are actively listening to your customer’s concerns and taking them seriously. Make sure your response is professional and respectful.

Telling the customer that “this has never happened, so it must be your fault” will not make the customer happy. Your potential customers will be reading the response and seeing how you handle customer complaints—so make sure it reflects positively on your brand.

Respond With Empathy

responding with empathy

It’s essential to respond with empathy and understanding. Apologize for any inconvenience the customer has experienced and be willing to offer a solution that resolves their issue. If appropriate, offer a gesture of goodwill such as a coupon or free product to show them that you value their feedback and want to make it right.

Remember that even if the customer is wrong, they may still be upset. Respond to their complaint with understanding and respect, and aim for a mutually beneficial outcome.

Provide an Explanation if Possible

If possible, explain why the customer had a bad experience. This can help diffuse potential tension and show that you understand the customer’s perspective. Be honest and factual in your explanation, but don’t place blame on anyone.

The goal here is to show the customer that you are taking their complaint seriously and doing your best to make it right. Keep in mind that explanation is different from justification. Stick to providing relevant facts, and do your best to not sound defensive.

Ask For Clarification on the Issue

If there are any details that you don’t understand, don’t be afraid to ask the customer for clarification. This will show that you are taking their issue seriously and want to get to the bottom of it.

Asking for clarification also allows you to give a better response, as you will have all the information you need to help resolve their issue.

Take Action to Turn Things Around

Don’t just say that you’ll resolve the issue–do something about it. Take proactive steps to ensure that the customer’s issue is resolved and their complaint is addressed.

If appropriate, offer a refund or exchange, and give the customer an incentive to do business with you again. This will show that you are willing to go above and beyond to make things right with the customer.

What Not To Do When You Get Negative Reviews

Here are a few things you should avoid when responding to a negative review:

Be Defensive: You’re greatly invested in your brand as a business owner. So, when a customer is unhappy with your product or service, it can be difficult to read negative feedback without feeling personally attacked. But it’s important to remember that the customer is not attacking you or your brand—they are simply expressing their experience. So, respond without getting defensive.

Be Dismissive Or Make Excuses: Being dismissive can come off as unprofessional and insincere. It’s better to take ownership of the issue, apologize, and offer solutions. Don’t make excuses or offer justifications. Focus on how you can make it right.

Ignore Them: Ignoring a customer’s complaint is the worst thing you could do. Not only does it show that you don’t care, but it also gives the customer a chance to escalate their complaint or post more negative reviews. Remember that your potential customers will be watching how you handle customer complaints, so you want to respond promptly and professionally.

Key Takeaways

Knowing how to deal with bad reviews can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be a source of stress or frustration.

Here are some key takeaways from this article:

  • When you receive a negative review, respond to it quickly, with respect and understanding.
  • Acknowledge their complaint and don’t blame them.
  • Respond with empathy and be respectful. Be considerate of the customer’s feelings.
  • Explain why the customer had a bad experience, but don’t place blame on anyone.
  • If there are any details that you don’t understand, ask the customer for clarification.
  • Take action to resolve their complaint and ensure that the same issue doesn’t happen again.
  • Don’t be dismissive and defensive because it will only fuel the fire.
  • Ignoring a customer’s complaint is the worst thing you could do. It shows that you don’t care and gives the customer a chance to escalate their complaint.

The Beginner’s Off-Page SEO Guide: Building Backlinks

Around 50% of website traffic comes from organic search, and 70% to 80% of users ignore paid ads. So, if you want to generate traffic that converts, you need to focus on organic search results.

The #1 result in Google gets approximately 32% of all clicks, so we don’t need to tell you that ranking in the top few positions is essential for success.

On-page SEO will only take you so far in your attempts to improve your rankings. That’s why it’s important to also put resources into off-page SEO.

This article will explain exactly what off-page SEO is and how to use it to improve your rankings.

What Is Off-Page SEO?

Off-page SEO (also known as off-site SEO) is the practice of optimizing a website to increase its visibility and rankings in search engines through methods like link building. Off-page SEO increases your website’s trustworthiness, authority, and relevance for specific keywords, helping it rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).

In simple words, off-page SEO helps the search engine understand what other websites think of your website.

Why Is Off-Page SEO So Important?

Off-page SEO is important because it’s a major factor in helping search engines decide where to rank your website.

The quality of the external links pointing to your website, for example, signals to Google that your website is authoritative. If other websites link to yours, they consider your content valuable. As a result, Google is more likely to rank your website higher in SERPs.

However, that doesn’t mean you should focus solely on off-page SEO. Those external links won’t matter as much if your website isn’t optimized for on-page SEO or if you have glaring technical SEO issues.

Off-Page SEO vs. On-Page SEO

Off-page SEO and on-page SEO are two sides of the same coin.

On-page and off-page SEO are both important for ranking higher in search engine results pages. 

On-page SEO refers to the process of optimizing pages that are on your domain to rank higher in search results. Off-page SEO, on the other hand, refers to activities outside your website that can help you improve your ranking.

A good way to think of it is this: on-page SEO is what you do on your website to optimize it for search engines, while off-page SEO is what you do off your website to increase its visibility.

Some common on-page SEO tactics include optimizing titles and meta descriptions, adding keyword-rich content, and adding descriptive alt-text to images.

Off-page SEO tactics include link building, promotion on Google My Business, influencer outreach, etc.

9 Off-Page SEO Best Practices

If you want to do off-page SEO the right way, here are some of the best practices you should follow:

Link Building 

link building

Link building is one of the most important off-page SEO techniques.

Link building is getting other websites to link to your website. High-quality links can help improve your website’s search engine rankings.

There are many different ways to build links. Some popular methods include broken link building and the skyscraper technique.

The broken link building technique is a great way to get high-quality backlinks. First, you identify pages on someone else’s website that are linking to a broken or dead page. Then, you contact the website owner and tell them their link is broken. You then suggest that they link to your website instead as a means of improving the reader’s experience.

This technique is effective because it allows you to get high-quality links from websites already linking to similar content. If the page is already ranking for keywords related to your page, it can significantly improve your rankings.

The skyscraper technique is another great way to get high-quality links.

First, you find popular content in your industry. Then, you create even better content, reach out to those who linked to the original piece of content, and let them know about your new article.

This technique is effective because it lets you get links from high-authority websites.

Brand Mentions

Brand mentions are when your website, product, service, or company is mentioned in another source. This could be a blog post, article, social media post, or even an email newsletter. When someone mentions your business positively on their site or page it helps to increase your visibility and build backlinks to your website.

Brand mentions are effective because they help build your brand’s online presence and improve your search engine rankings.

Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is the process of working with influential people in a particular industry or niche to promote your website and help build backlinks. Influencers can be bloggers, YouTubers, Instagrammers, podcasters, thought leaders, etc. Working with influencers helps to reach more potential customers and increase website traffic as well as diversify your link profile with high-quality backlinks.

Influencer marketing is effective because it allows you to get your content in front of new audiences that are already established.

When searching for influencers to target for your brand, remember the acronym REAR:

  • Reach: How many people see their posts?
  • Engagement: How often do people interact with their posts?
  • Authority: Do people respect and listen to them?
  • Relevance: Is their audience relevant to your brand?

Guest Posting

Guest posting involves creating content for other websites in order to build backlinks and increase your own website’s visibility. When you create a guest post, it should be relevant to the topic of the hosting site, high-quality, and link back to your own website. This is a great way to attract new visitors while building valuable backlinks and increasing your website’s rankings in SERPs.

Benefits of Guest Posting

  • Reach a new audience
  • Build relationships
  • Improve your search engine rankings

We wrote an extensive Twitter thread on how to find guest blogging opportunities, you can read here:

EMBED TWEET: https://twitter.com/ctwtn/status/1564309280316018689

Getting on Social Media

If you’re not already on social media, now is the time to get started. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn help you connect with your audience and improve your off-page SEO.

Here are a few tips for getting started with social media:

  • Choose The Right Platform: Not all social media platforms are created equal. It’s important to choose the platform that makes the most sense for your business. For example, if you’re a B2B company, LinkedIn might be a better choice than Facebook.
  • Create Interesting And Engaging Content: To get people to follow you on social media, you need to post interesting and engaging content. This could include blog posts, infographics, images, etc.
  • Stay Consistent: Consistency is the key to success on social media. Try to post regularly, and don’t forget to engage with your audience.

Reviews

Customer reviews are a powerful form of social proof, and they can have a big impact on your off-page SEO.

The more positive reviews you have, the more likely people will trust your brand. And when people trust your brand, they’re more likely to do business with you.

It is the most-effective local online marketing. Review sites often result in no-follow links, but keep in mind that they can still positively impact your SEO.

If you own a brick-and-mortar store, make sure to claim your business profile on popular review websites like Google My Business.

Podcasting

podcasting

Roughly 41% of people in the US tune into podcasts every month.

Podcasts are a great way to improve your off-page SEO because they allow you to reach a new audience.

When starting a podcast, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:

  • Select The Right Platform: There are many different podcast platforms. Select the one that makes the most sense for your business.
  • Promote Your Podcast: Once you’ve created your podcast, you need to promote it to get listeners. You can promote your podcast on social media, your website, and other popular podcast directories.
  • Interact With Your Audience: After you’ve built up a listener base, interact with your audience. You can respond to comments and questions and promote listener interaction on your social media platforms.

Forum Posting

Forum posting is a great way to connect with people in your industry and build relationships. When done right, it’s also a great way to drive traffic to your website and generate leads. Although the power of forum posting for backlinks has more or less dwindled to zero, being active in the right communities can have very positive effects on your business.

When participating in online forums, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:

  • Choose The Right Platform: Choose the right platform: It’s important to choose the right platform for your needs. Make sure to select a forum that is popular in your industry and has an active user base.
  • Engage With Other Users: To get the most out of forum posting, you need to engage with other users. This means responding to posts, starting discussions, and offering helpful advice.
  • Promote Your Brand: When promoting your brand on a forum, it’s important to do so in a way that is respectful and non-spammy. You can promote your brand by including a link to your website in your signature or by providing helpful advice and resources.

Local Directories

Local business directory listings are a great way to improve your local SEO.

Creating profiles on popular websites like Google My Business, Yelp, and Yellow Pages can help your business rank higher in local search results.

It’s important to ensure that all your listings are accurate and up-to-date. You should also include keyword-rich descriptions and other information to help potential customers easily find your business.

Make sure to respond to customer reviews promptly and include links to your main website. This can help boost your reputation and increase your local SEO rankings.

Local listing websites are often industry-specific, so be sure to look for ones that are most pertinent to your business. For example, if you were running a backpacker hostel, you might want to create listings on WikiTravel and TripAdvisor.

Key Takeaways

Off-page SEO is an important part of any digital marketing strategy. It involves activities performed outside your website to help improve search engine rankings.

By following the tips above, you can make the most of off-page SEO for your business:

  • Link building, which involves creating backlinks to your website from other websites, is one of the most important off-page SEO activities.
  • Influencer marketing is an effective way to reach a wider audience and build relationships.
  • Guest posting can help you attract traffic to your website and generate leads.
  • Social media, podcasts, social bookmarking, forum posting, and local listings are also useful activities for off-page SEO.
  • Claim your business on Google My Business, Yelp, and other popular websites to help improve local SEO.
  • Brand mentions and reviews on popular websites can also help boost SEO.

Active Vs. Passive Voice: Differences and Use Cases

When drafting a piece of writing, choosing the right voice to convey your message is important.

That’s why writers need to know the difference between active and passive voice.

Which of the above should it be?

In this blog post, we’ll explore the differences between active and passive voice with the help of use cases and discuss when each is most appropriate. We hope this information will help you select the right voice for your writing projects. Mastering the use of active voice is a key part of persuasive writing, so make sure you take your time with this article and let it sink in.

Active Vs. Passive Voice: What Are Their Differences?

When writing, there are two main ways to communicate your ideas: active and passive voice. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, and it’s essential to be aware of the differences between them so you can choose the one that will work best for your particular situation.

Active Voice

In active voice sentences, the subject performs the action. This construction is usually shorter and clearer than its passive counterpart because it puts the subject before the verb, making it clear who is performing what action.

Passive Voice

In passive voice sentences, the subject is acted upon by the verb. This construction can make your writing sound weak or indecisive. It can also lead to confusion about who or what is responsible for the action.

Active vs. Passive Voice Comparisons

The table below shows a few examples of active vs. passive voice to distinguish the two clearly:

Active VoicePassive Voice
The driver stopped the car.The car was stopped by the driver.
The doctor will see you now.You will be seen by the doctor now.
The teacher called on Sarah to answer the question.Sarah was called on by the teacher to answer the question.

Common Reasons for Using Active Voice

Active voice is generally the preferred tone for writing and speaking as it makes the sentence more direct, shorter, and clear. There are certain instances when using active voice is always  the better choice.

To Write Shorter Sentences

Active voice is often shorter and more straightforward than passive voice. Using the most concise language possible when writing or speaking is better. Using active voice can help you achieve this goal by eliminating unnecessary words.

Passive: The lamp was knocked over by a gust of wind.

Becomes

Active: A gust of wind knocked over the lamp.

To Add a Tone of Authority

When writing or speaking, using an active voice can add a tone of authority. This is often seen in technical and persuasive writing, such as arguments or debates.

Passive: The course needs to be signed up by tomorrow.

Becomes

Active: You will need to sign up for the course by tomorrow.

To Make Sentences Easier to Understand

Active voice is often easier to understand than passive voice. This is especially true for people learning English as a second language. It can also be helpful when writing about complex topics.

Passive: The door was opened by John.

Becomes

Active: John opened the door.

Common Reasons for Using Passive Voice

Active voice is the preferred writing style in most cases, but some scenarios call for passive voice to highlight a particular cause instead of the subject.

To Emphasize The Action Rather Than The Actor

If you want to emphasize the action over the actor, you can use passive voice. This construction is often seen in scientific writing, as it allows for a clearer and more concise explanation of what happened without getting bogged down in who did what.

Example:

The patient was injected with a new experimental drug.

In this sentence, the focus is on the fact that the patient was injected with a new drug, not who did the injection. Using passive voice can be a helpful way to de-emphasize the actor in a sentence and keep the focus on the action.

To Avoid Naming The Actor

Passive voice can also be used when the actor is unknown or unimportant. In these cases, you can use passive voice to avoid identifying the actor.

Example:

My car was hit by a truck this morning.

In this sentence, we don’t need to know who hit the actor’s car, just that it was hit. Using passive voice can be a way to avoid naming an actor when it is not necessary.

To Create an Authoritative Tone

Passive voice can also create a more formal or authoritative voice. This is often seen in legal documents, where using passive voice helps create a sense of objectivity.

Example:

The verdict was read by the Judge.

In this sentence, the passive voice construction creates a sense of detachment and objectivity.

When Writing About a General Truth

Passive voice can also be used when writing about a general truth or fact. This is often seen in scientific, report, and factual writing, as it allows for a more concise explanation of a concept.

Example:

It has been proven that passive voice can be used to create a more formal tone.

In this sentence, the passive voice is used to state a general truth about the use of the passive voice.

Changing Passive Voice To Active

One of the most common writing mistakes is using passive voice. Passive voice occurs when the subject of a sentence is acted upon by the verb rather than performing the action itself. This often happens when writers try to sound more formal or “academic,” but there are certain do’s and don’ts for writing an academic tone. Passive voice can make your writing sound weak and unclear. It can also be challenging to read.

The good news is that passive voice is easy to fix. Just make sure that the subject of your sentence is performing the action. In other words, use an active voice.

Here’s an example of a sentence in passive voice:

The ball was thrown by the boy.

Here’s the same sentence in active voice:

The boy threw the ball.

See how much easier it is to read the active voice sentence? It’s also shorter and simpler. That’s because the active voice is more concise.

Key Takeaways

Active and passive voice are two writing styles that differ in delivery. Understanding the difference between the two will help you use them more efficiently for writing and speech. Although this may seem like an inconsequential part of writing, we consider it an essential tenet of becoming a talented content writer. To recap what we learned in this article:

  • Active voice is when the subject performs the verb, and passive voice is when the verb acts upon the subject.
  • Active voice is used to write shorter sentences, add a tone of authority, and make sentences easier to understand.
  • Passive voice is used to emphasize the action rather than the actor, avoid naming the actor, create an authoritative tone, and when writing a general truth.
  • Passive voice can easily be converted into active voice by making the subject perform the verb.