What is Content Editing? The Definitive Guide

To be effective with your content efforts, you need a content marketing plan, consistency, and good content editing.

Updated: May 11, 2023
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Effective content marketing works to draw new customers and increase your sales by nurturing a relationship of trust between you and your potential customers. 

Good content also helps to establish your company as an expert in your field. 

When potential customers have this impression of your company, they will turn to you when they need a product or service you offer. 

However, effective content marketing involves more than simply posting articles on your website, blog, or social media pages when you have a few free minutes. 

To be effective with your content efforts, you need a content marketing plan, consistency, and good content editing.

    What is content editing?

    Content editing goes beyond making sure that your content is grammatically correct and that all of the words in a given piece are spelled correctly. 

    Although grammar and spelling are part of it, content editing’s main focus is making sure that your content is presented in a format that will have the most impact on readers and increase the chances of readers’ noticing and remembering what you post. 

    For example, if you are a winery, you can describe the beautiful label on your wine bottles in great detail in an article. However, an image of the label will be much more impactful. 

    Equally, a how-to article on a subject like fixing a leaking drain pipe will be enhanced by adding images of a person doing each step in the process.

    Video source:
    First Editing – Professional Editing Services

    What does a content editor do?

    The short answer is that a content editor makes sure that what is posted on your website, blog and social media pages has the most impact on readers

    That means making sure that your content is grammatically correct, has correct spelling and punctuation, has a well-defined and well-developed thesis, is presented in a format that will be most engaging for readers, and is placed on the channel where it will be most effective. 

    All of these elements are necessary to maximize the effectiveness of your content. 

    A good content editor gets involved before and after the content is created. 

    They advise the best placement and format for a piece as well as make sure that the piece is executed and posted correctly. Often, they work closely with the content creators.

    Why do I need a content editor?

    Although they may overlap, the skills that make a good content editor are different from those of a good copywriter and copy editor. 

    A good content editor helps you to get the most out of all of your content and make sure that it supports your content marketing plan and moves it forward. 

    You and your team may write the best articles and take the best images on the planet, but do you know where those articles will have the most impact?
    Do you know when a how-to article best addresses your readers’ questions or when an infographic might be a better choice?
    Do you know which types of content are best received on different social media channels? 

    A good content editor understands the nuances of all of these choices and more.

    A content editor builds on your knowledge of your industry by making sure that your content is seen and exposed to the largest audience possible.

    What is the difference between content editing and copy editing?

    Copy editing is different from content editing. 

    Copy editing is limited to making sure that the text in your content uses proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling, and that the idea of the piece is consistent and properly developed. 

    Content editing begins with these skills, but extends to making sure that the content is presented in a format that will have the most impact on readers as well as making sure that the image, article, video, or poll is placed on the channel works best for the piece.

    The 4 types of editing

    Traditionally, the four types of editing are structural/story editing, line editing, copy editing, and proofreading. 

    Structural/story editing refers to making sure that the piece of content supports its thesis in a logical way and that all examples and data help to prove the conclusion. 

    This type of editing also involves making sure the piece has an introduction and a conclusion (when necessary), that it has clarity, and that it meets the required or desired word count.

    Line editing involves evaluating the tone, style, and consistency of the writing in a piece of content. 

    For example, does the piece have a consistent voice throughout? Does it feel like it was written by one person (even when it wasn’t)? Does it avoid contradicting itself? Does it make its point clearly? These are all questions a line editor takes into consideration and makes notes for the writer to correct, if necessary.

    Copy editing we’ve discussed above. It’s making sure that the grammar, punctuation, and spelling are perfect.

    Proofreading is making sure that all of the previously requested edits have been completed and that the format, font, and physical structure of the piece are correct. 

    For example, if the piece requires graphics or tables, are these indented properly and not divided awkwardly between pages?

    We argue that in today’s digital marketing environment, there is a fifth type of crucial editing–determining the best format and best placement of a particular piece of content. 

    That’s the type of editing that we’ve been discussing when we talk about content editing. Yes, of course, grammar and spelling are important, but equally important are content placement and format. 

    This type of content edit can make sure your investment in time and energy in creating content gets the maximum return.

    What are the skills needed for a content editor?

    Attention to detail and being self-directed are essential traits in a content editor. 

    Of course, good language skills are important. If the language you are editing is not your first language, you need to have a good understanding of that language’s idioms and usage. 

    In addition, a good content editor needs a comprehensive knowledge of internet channels and the intricacies of each as well as the many different content formats. 

    For example, a content editor needs to know that images have the most impact on Instagram and Twitter, whereas an in-depth “how to” article might have more impact on your website.

    Successful content editing with Writer Access

    Effective content marketing means more than just posting good content regularly. 

    To maximize your return with your content marketing, you need a good content editor who not only makes sure that your copy is pristine and makes sense but also advises you where to post your content and what format makes the most sense for what you are trying to say. You can even outsource your content to make it scalable.

    WriterAccess has a stable of more than 15,000 writers and editors with expertise in a huge range of subjects. 

    We not only have writers that create dynamic content, but we can make sure your content is in a format that makes the most sense for your content goals and advises you about the best places to post your content.

    We think our track record speaks for itself. We have produced more than two million projects for customers with a 99.97% success rate. 

    If you’ve never considered using a content editor, we invite you to give us a try. We make it easy and affordable with our two-week trial period. Visit Writer Access today to get started. 


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    Find top content freelancers on WriterAccess.

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