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It's Better To Write No Article than Write a Bad Article
Date 11/19/2008    Tags Advise    (0)

I haven't posted an update here for a while but it's not been for a lack of trying. I've gotten a few pieces half written, but I just can't seem to weave them all together into something I'm proud of. Which got me to thinking, I would much rather not put out an article at all than put out something that isn't good.

There is a reason why people try to make a good first impression and your website should be no different. When you see something new, you don't have a lot to judge on so what you do see means a whole lot more. If the first article someone reads on your website is a crappy article, do you honestly think that new visitors will want to come back to read more crappy articles? As far as they know, that's all that you have.

In my article How to Make Your Website Insanely Popular, I stressed that the most important thing you can do for your website is update, update, update. What I'm saying now may sound converse to that, but I'm not saying that you shouldn't update, I'm saying you shouldn't do bad updates.

Some people seem to feel intent on kicking out lots and lots of five minute pieces that require little to no thought and provide no benefit to society. When you write something, read it over and think about what your visitors would take away from it. If your overwhelming impression is that they will feel they've wasted five minutes of their lives that they can't ever get back, you probably want to consider rewriting your piece or scrapping it altogether.

Writing a bad article is not just a waste of your visitor's time, it's a waste of your time too. Bad articles might bring in some hits initially but in the long run will only turn people away from your website. My article Using AJAX to Create a DropDownList for Populating a TextBox has brought in a good deal of traffic to this site because it's a useful tutorial. On the other hand, me complaining about not being able to find a good cheese steak isn't useful and is not all that interesting and has brought me next to no traffic. Despite much more time upfront to write, the Dropdown Tutorial was actually worthwhile because it brought more traffic and gained me some credibility and repeat visitors. I can't say the same about a bad article (or a bad cheese steak).

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