WordPress-728x90

Filler Content: Do You Need it in Your Content Marketing Strategy

Filler content refers to basically all kinds of posts that you write and publish just to fill in a gap, posts that don’t provide much practical information and that aren’t really worthy of people’s shares.

“Content is king” is what many bloggers preach. And although the word “king” might be an exaggeration, you will hardly be getting any traffic if you are low on content.Filler content

So looking from that perspective, there comes a question – should you publish filler content just to keep the posting frequency high?

Although answering that question might seem like a no-brainer, in reality the issue goes deeper. If you strictly follow one or some of the big blogs in your niche, you will have probably noticed filler content being published every now and then.

The below paragraphs take a closer look at this filler content issue and more specifically whether or not publishing that kind of lower quality content is actually worth it:

Posting Frequency and Filler Content

I am a firm believer that content frequency is directly related to the amount of traffic that you can get. It’s simple really – whenever you publish something new, your RSS subscribers are first to get notified. A new blog post is also a reason to promote on blogging networks, such as Blokube, BizSugar, SocialBuzzClub and Blog Engage. New posts can also be a great source of traffic from JustRetweet or Triberr (a great service for bloggers, allowing them to get more social media exposure).

All in all there are lots of reasons why a frequent posting schedule is good for the health of your blog.

And although some studies have shown that the most well trafficked blogs do publish every day, or even a couple of times a day, when it comes to those, there’s an issue.

It’s kind of like the egg and the chicken paradox – the question is did posting that often gave them key positions or do they post so frequently, because they are the biggest and have enough writers in their team?

That in turn leads to another question – is posting frequency a good enough excuse for putting up filler content? After all, one such additional post every week should in theory mean more visits, isn’t that true?

Quality and its Importance

Lots can be said, and lots is already said on the quality content topic. To be quite honest with you, I am not a huge fan of the content is king theory that I mentioned above.

Obviously content is the backbone to every blog, but then again it’s just a backbone. You have to build on top of it in order to make something out of your online presence. You need to do SEO, you need to get on social media, you need to build relationships, you need to do all kinds of other things if you want to get the wheel spinning.

And there’s the thing…

Let’s look at Mashable. Mashable is a blog that covers lifestyle, business, marketing and social media-related topics. It is one of the most “authoritive” social media/marketing blogs out there and pretty much every post that they  publish receives over a thousand retweets and hundreds of shares on other networks.

On Mashable you can come across a good number of well-written, in-depth articles, which are well worth the read. However once you take the time to dig below the surface, you start noticing more and more posts, that aren’t as sophisticated. You come across articles that seem to fit the description for filler content very well.

All in all it turns out that the more popular a blog becomes, the less importance quality content seems to hold. I mean you already got the audience, there are more than enough subscribers to buy on your offers. Then why waste time and money producing more quality content than you need?

But then again, you probably wouldn’t be reading this post if you had like a hundred thousand readers…

So at least for us (although that should be the case for all blogs), ordinary bloggers, quality matters and here is why exactly:

Building Trust and Authority

When I mentioned Mashable, I used the word “authoritative”. What I mean is there are dozens of blogs out there that with the help of link building and the right SEO strategies in general are able to generate tens of thousands of monthly visitors. And although that is something we all strive to achieve, simply having the traffic is not all that counts.

The problem with some of those blogs is that they lack authority. They are like passage ways – the traffic just moves through them, but it doesn’t stick. You check their Facebook page and you see less than 300 likes. You check their Twitter account and there are under a thousand followers. You check their comments and there are a couple at most.

See where I am going?

Having the traffic is great but that is just part of the story. Good content is one of the factors that “motivates” folks like you to go there and engage. That is not how you get people to visit in the first place, but how you get them to come back for more. So if you lack quality content right now that you are starting, you can’t expect ever coming close to the success that huge blogs such as Mashable, The Huffington Post or The Forbes are seeing.

And yes, there’s really no way to always provide great content and nothing less. Sometimes you will be happy with the result, other times you won’t. In the end however you should always keep trying to share useful and practical information that people will appreciate. If you started blogging a couple of months ago and would like to build an audience, you have to produce content that is actually useful. It’s a different story when that same blog grows big time, big enough to compete with Mashable, which I’ve been giving as an example.

In Conclusion

So what do we end up with? Is using not-that-good content an idea that’s worth taking on? I’d say no. As long as you are not running one of the most popular blogs in the world and as long as traffic is not the only metric you care for. What are your thoughts? Have you happened to publish those kinds of posts on your blog?

Can filler content get you in front of a big audience?

About 

Daniel Sharkov is an 18 year old student, marketer, blogger and a social media enthusiast. Make sure to check out Reviewz N Tips - the place, where he shares his insights and experience!

56 Comments (click here to leave a comment)

  1. Evan

    Building a trust is very important for any blogger. But from other hand you can hardly build any trust relations with your readers writing average content…

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Hey Evan,

      Yep, that’s how it is. But then again, the more you build your blog’s audience, the harder it is to keep up with all the different tasks. From that perspective it might happen. I have happened to publish content that I wasn’t happy with, but I believe it’s about looking at the big picture. :)

      Cheers!
      Daniel

  2. Fabrizio Van Marciano

    Top marks on this post, when I started blogging 3 years ago I was creating a lot of content filler type posts amongst my well thought out posts and admittedly traffic was good too, especially as I was posting daily. These days however I’m only posting twice or three times per week at the most and aim at producing higher quality, resourceful pillar content.

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Fabrizio,

      And how would you compare the traffic difference between your twice-a-week schedule and your previous daily schedule with filler content every now and then? It would be interesting to know. :)

      Daniel

      • James M.

        I’d love to hear an answer to this question. I’ve just been to some other blog (Kristi Hine’s kikolani) advising us to slow down the pace of the blog posts. Also, Halpern is so into publishing just 1 post a week (or a month) because he believes quality is important and that in his activity heirarchy, writing posts is not the top priority. Marketing is.

        An answer would definitely put statistics to an otherwise theoretical premise.

      • Fabrizio

        Well I’d say that when I was posting daily traffic was consistent, when I dropped it back to 2 to 3 posts per week I saw a gradual drop in traffic for sure.

        • Fabrizio

          Also to add however that time spent on site had increased as well as page per visits. So for me posting less fluff, filler content, and focusing on putting out just quality stuff works.

  3. Lexi

    Hmmm… that’s a tricky question. But personally, I don’t fluff so filler content isn’t something I’d want in any of my website.

  4. Suresh Khanal

    Battle in brain! Killer content and filler content – a good discussion. You’ve pretty well weaved both the sides and I’m in a dilemma now :D

    Well, I’m not in favor of filler content but rather believe that networked posts can result you better benefits. What I mean by networked posts is that – there’s a killer post at the center and there are a number of shorter and quicker posts around. This way, I guess, we can increase the post frequency without losing the quality of posts.

    The ball is in your court now :)

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Hey Suresh,

      Hehe thanks, you never thought there’d be a dilemma, have you? :D

      I like the strategy you introduced. I have covered something similar on my blog and the main idea is namely one pillar article every now and then and quality yet shorter posts in between. They don’t at all have to be filler content though.

      Thanks for stopping by mate!
      Daniel

      • Suresh Khanal

        Would love to go through your post. Could you please offer a link of that post.

        I found it much convenient to promote the affiliate products too if you have a pillar content and can tangle your money posts with that one.

        BTW, I’m much impressed with your ’8 ways to make best use of your content’ in your blog. I’ve left a comment with my curiosities. Hope it will get approved soon.

  5. Thara

    I have seen some sites on the top of the first page of google which does not have any content except for one or two affiliate links. I can’t understand how they do it.

  6. Sagar nandwani

    well Posting Frequency is the biggest factor which results in the traffic that is Posting Frequency is directly related to our daily traffic. I mostly recommend people to post geniune article three per week……

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Posting frequency is indeed one very important factor. But it matters more once you have the subscribers and once you have the followers to share your latest content with.

      Daniel

  7. Ravi

    Relations are Built by trust and both are indeed basic factors for marketing the Brand. I have seen many bloggers who dont even comment on any blogs saying that content alone should brig traffic as they are good at it, but how can someone reach a place when it’s map is not available?

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Ravi,

      I agree with you. Content alone can hardly be enough for a blogger to get people reading. People first need to find you, so things like commenting on blogs and sharing your content on social media are essential.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
      Daniel

  8. Hayley Reeve

    Hi Daniel, I thoroughly enjoyed this article thanks for taking the time to write it. I personally think Mashable is becoming close to an online version of a trashy tabloid magazine. But then they have hundreds of thousands of subscribers.

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Yes, that’s exactly what I am talking about Hayley! The fact is that they already have the hundreds of thousands of readers. Whereas if it were a new blogger just starting out, content (along with other things of course) would play a very important role for building that initial readerbase.

      Thanks for stopping by! :)
      Daniel

  9. Kenneth

    Content that engages is the key. I don’t believe we need filler content because it’d only put your blog in the position to be penalized. The best content have something to offer the reader. Don’t you think so?

  10. marty

    In the beggining of a persons blogging career I do think its important to stick to a schedule and post often.it allows people to get there feet wet and get a a handle on how to blog. But after a while you don’t need to show people how consistent you need to show them how much you know and how you can help others

    b

  11. Alan

    As a reader, I don’t mind to see less frequent posts if it means better content and no filler. As a blogger, I always choose not to write meaningless posts that do nothing for my audience. Rather than filler content it is better to create content that everyone enjoys.

  12. Devagya Uikey

    Content filtering is really necessary to build relationship with readers, writing an article is not enough, i mostly prefer in-depth materialize facts, which helps to bind readers and as result gives good feedback, i have seen the benefits of posting frequency too which really gives nice traffic boost.
    Thanks for the share and you have engaged us with so many topics, i should end commenting writing otherwise it’ll become a discussion forum :D

  13. Anurag

    Hi Daniel,
    Never tried to fill any gap with this, filler content. So don’t have experience with this. The thing is I truly believe in, give value to readers or don’t update the blog.

    Thanks for the share.

  14. Sean Nicholson

    Great info, Daniel. Personally, I publish a couple times a week, but spend the rest of my time building relationships. I want to make sure that I have a good, strong network and the content that I publish is valuable to those that follow my blog. I’m not in it for the money, but for the information sharing.

    Cheers!

    –Sean

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Hey Sean,

      You definitely seem to have taken the right approach. I strongly believe that having the network is almost as important as having the content in the first place. I mean writing and publishing alone can hardly be enough for a blogger to build an audience.

      Enjoy your Sunday! :)
      Daniel

  15. Heather Stone

    Hi Daniel,
    A very thoughtful article! I’m not a big believer in posting for the sake of posting. It’s true some blog entries may not be what we would call “pillar posts,” long pieces that can be shared again and again, but it seems to me all should be valuable. Blogs are a means of communications. You should always, at least, have something to say.

    • Daniel Sharkov

      Hey Heather,

      I do agree with you – there’s no denying – the idea of a blog is to not only provide information for the reader but to also communicate with them. And that’s in my opinion the biggest problem of some of the blogs like Mashable that I talked about. The communication there is on a rather low level plus what I talked about in the post.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts! :)
      Daniel

  16. John Mak

    Daniel, by focusing on quality like a laser beam, you will attract more “quality” visitors, ready to get informed from your post and definitely share it. Becoming more valuable to the marketplace instantly brings us ahead of the competition. There is so much information in our days, every subject is almost covered. The deal is to think ahead and always make the difference. Thanks for sharing!

    John Mak

    • Daniel Sharkov

      John,

      What you said is true. However I believe that getting “quality visitors” is more about quality promotion rather than the quality content itself. I mean based on my experience it’s really hard to make a head start without doing some marketing on your own. Content hardly promotes itself unfortunately.

      Other than that glad you enjoyed the post!
      Daniel

  17. Ray

    There is filler in food so why not websites I guess. A while back I landed on a popular seo site after performing a very competitive Google search. The article ranked 3 at the time and continued holding for weeks. It’s possible that it still does actually. It was barely 200 words. The author also posted a very similar article on their own site that was barley 100 words and it ranked at 5. Not to mention it had over 500 likes, 700 tweets, 100 g+, and 200 linkedin shares. I know if I wrote the same article and posted it on my site I would be lucky to be found for such a competitive keyword/phrase. It must be nice to cook up something in 30 minutes or less and rank so well.

  18. Sylviane Nuccio

    Hi Ileane and Daniel,

    Excellent post here.

    I agree that there must be a certain frequency to publishing a post on a blog, but I don’t think it needs to be daily as some people say. However, it can’t be once a month either. A just balance like once or twice a week is great in my book.

    It’s true also that content alone is not going to do it. How long would you have to wait for your wonderful, exceptional content to attract loyal recurring visitors if you didn’t even try to build relationships. If anyone can do that I’d love to know how!

    Thanks for those great tips, Daniel :)

  19. doug_eike

    I made the decision long ago that I would insist on quality content on both of my blogs. It’s clear to me, however, that the filler-content theory gets superior results. I follow approximately 50 blogs, and the ones that turn out tons of content, no matter what the quality, do better in terms of ranking, comment draw, etc.

    My hope is that someday the search engines will learn to recognize quality content. At that point, the electronic tricksters and slop writers will finally be out of business.

  20. Michael Smith

    It depends what type of website you are running. You are only mentioning sites where you want to have a loyal readership, which, yes, is the case for most websites. But there are also many websites where having a loyal readership is not a chief concern, and all that you are trying to do is sell a product(s). In those cases, content is king, and filler content saves you a whole lot of time!

  21. Steve

    Excellent advice on filler content. You say that the more authoritative your site the less value your posts need and you still have readers. That may be true, but not for long. And it is increasingly difficult to provide unique, quality content that your readers will find value in. That’s where guest blogging sure can help. Thanks.

  22. Ben Lloyd

    I have committed myself to one blog post per day, ensuring that it always contains good quality, informative content. If I found that I could not meet that self-imposed requirement I simply would not blog that day. One obvious filler article immediately devalues your work before and after in the eyes of your readers.

  23. Andrea Thomas

    Well-written! This is such an informative article. This sure does help a lot of bloggers out there. But I think the “quality” is what the people wants to see, I mean the “content” because it is what the people could automatically see. I really appreciated your insights. Thank for the article!

  24. Wonkie

    I think the importance of filler content depends on the type of website you have. E.g. ours is a cartoon blog – we used to get very little organic traffic through Google when we just used to publish the cartoon with very little filler (text) content – I imagine all people with image-rich sites would face a similar issue.

    Once we introduced the editorials however, the picture changed for us completely – especially with regard to organic search traffic. Funny enough, we did a survey of our subscribers last year and it turns out most of them visit our site only for the cartoon content (i.e. they don’t really pay attention to the editorial much so for all intents the article can be considered filler content!)

  25. Pina

    I also think it depends. If you post 10 blog posts a day than filler content is okay, but if you only post 10 blogposts a month every posts should be great..

  26. Barry Overstreet

    I don’t think filler content just for the purpose of publishing content is a good idea. I agree with one of the commenters above that it would tend to devalue your other posts.

    That being said, nobody puts out “epic” content all the time. We all have posts that knock it out of the park and then we have posts that fall pretty flat. It’s just life and the normal ebb and flow of things. We don’t mean to, but it just happens.

    Even some of the more popular blogs have posts that aren’t up to their normal snuff. Even if it’s shared via Twitter and such, it’s usually just a loyal fan base being generous and loyal because they just automatically share that blogger’s content.

    In reality, the only thing you can do is make sure you give your best effort and let it ride from there. If you do that and put out good content on the whole, your readers will let you slide for the occasional “miss” post. They, too, realize that we’re all human.

    I like your take on this, Daniel. Thanks for sharing!

    ~Barry

  27. Samuel

    Content filler I think shouldn’t be put on your blog.

    Provide your best content to your readers.

    I would recommend posting less frequently to be able to produce high quality posts.

  28. Kimsea

    Thanks for sharing! Yes, I am agree to your post Daniel. Now I am hurting my backbone since I have now time to develop my blog content frequently more over I never try the guest post.

  29. Adam Gottlieb

    This post is spot on… For the bloggers concerned about putting up consistent content, then consider having guest posters on the site. If you publish some really clear and strict guidelines and stick to them, it can help you generate more content without compromising on the quality.

  30. Arslan Shoukat

    I think in early days of your blogging career, you need filler content but when your blog grows big and you got followers, then you should post only quality articles.
    I don’t agree completely to Daniel that content is not king. Content is surely backbone and foundations of your site. Without quality content, your site can’t compete in your niche. But also content without proper marketing and networking is of no use.

  31. Rohit

    very nice article BBT,
    this article seemed some what out of league, i.e here you talk about filler content., in my opinion one should seek for the quality content for his blog..
    by the way very nice and informative article..:)

  32. Ivin Viljoen

    I won’t post if I don’t have valuable content to share. And that may mean I skip a week or two. And it’s not because I don’t have any value to give, but sometimes there’s no time. There’s no shame in skipping some time if you’re busy. I think quality is more important than frequency.

  33. Mahendra Chhimwal

    Hello Daniel
    Ya I am surely want these strategy in my posting.These are some tips which must be follow for getting good traffic as well as getting good loyal readers.Thanks for sharing these.

  34. Riki

    Halo Daniel Sharkov,
    I am very impressed with your tips and I am very interested to do it. Thank you Daniel Sharkov for your good tips.