The prevalence of blogs on the Internet has proven one thing that so many of us have forgotten: It’s important to know what you’re talking about before you say anything. A lot of blogs have foundered because of this, and a lot more have become very successful for the opposite reason – sometimes even leading to careers going in new and unexpected directions as a result of someone knowing what they’re posting about.
However, the same rule applies to all other parts of life as well. That’s why one pretty much can’t get a college degree without doing a few research papers. The ability to find out about something when you don’t yet know much of anything is a very powerful tool. So you need to be sure that what you’re saying online, be it on a personal page or a company website, is actually correct – even if doing so means doing some extra work.
That’s an important part of making sure that your content is worth reading to anyone who may look at it while searching the internet for something. Distinctly knowing what you’re talking about is every bit as valuable to search engine crawlers as just being sure of yourself; but it’s more valuable to you in the long run, because you won’t get shoved down to the end of the priority list for being proven wrong.
As a result, it’s a good idea to double check on anything you’re not 100% sure of, when you want to use it as a fact or even as an anecdote on your site. This can be tricky, if you found the information online yourself, because dead links and 404 errors can come up at any point to remove the reference that backs up your facts – that will make it hard to prove your facts if anybody asks where you got them.
That means that you need to use books and websites that can be counted on to maintain their pages properly when checking facts. It also means that you need to check your facts whenever you can. Otherwise, you aren’t going to be able to keep people’s attention for very long, or to be helpful to them when you actually have their interest. That’s the difference between a site that people disregard and one to which they turn whenever they have a question on a given matter.