The Content Authority Reviews

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This page includes The Content Authority reviews of users, as well as an official review by ContentHeat in which we carefully analyze and write out our experience.

 

 

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Although they’ve been around for quite a while, The Content Authority never reached the big leagues. According to their website, they were founded in 2009 in Pittsburgh, PA, and they’re currently operating from Suwanee, GA. Their founder is Shawn Manaher, a marketing expert.

 

Well, first off, we have to say that their CEOs marketing experience isn’t apparent on their website. It doesn’t catch the eye, it isn’t made to be pleasant to read, and the content isn’t outstandingly catchy either.

 

When you first enter their website, you will notice an outdated copy/paste template design that you have probably seen dozens of times before on all sorts of websites. The animation of the texts that explain what this company can do for you is slightly irritating and gives off an amateurish feel.

 

This was the first red flag, as their website looks anything but professional and up to date.

 

However, although the website isn’t visually pleasing or modern, it does provide enough information to potential clients.

 

The About Us page is sufficiently detailed — it contains information on ordering, pricing, policies, etc. Moreover, the pricing details are all clearly shown and were written so that anyone can understand them.

 

The Content Authority also has a page filled with generic testimonials that only have names, without any photos or other details about the clients. It seems rather unprofessional and slightly fake.

 

When it comes to their actual writing, there are no samples on the website. However, there’s a company blog, so you can perhaps count that as content samples. Unfortunately, that was last updated in 2014, so we can’t really say that it’s an accurate representation of their abilities.

 

And last but not least — the social media presence. Nowadays, everyone is on social media platforms, and the same is especially expected of a content writing company. The Content Authority’s Facebook page has just a bit over 1000 likes, no reviews, and their last post is from April 2014. They have no Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube accounts, so in essence, their social media presence is non-existent.

 

To recap, their website looks outdated and unprofessional, their testimonials are kind of strange, there are no samples, and their blog and their social media accounts are dead.

 

Overall — not a great first impression. But let’s give TCA a chance to shine.

 

 

ORDERING CONTENT

REGISTRATION

Although their website is outdated, it is fully functional, so that’s a potential problem you don’t have to worry about.

 

The registration process is simple — you enter your email address, first and last name, the name of your company — if you work for one — and you choose your password. Once you do that, you receive an activation code to your email address; then, you can purchase credits and start ordering.

 

 

PAYMENT OPTIONS

When it comes to paying for your content, TCA only offers payment via PayPal, or with your credit card via PayPal.

 

 

SUPPORT

If you need any help, there’s unfortunately no one who can provide it immediately. TCA has no live chat or Skype support agents available to talk to you. Your only option is to contact them via an email. However, they provide the same email for customer support and potential writers, which doesn’t seem very promising in terms of response times.

 

Once you register, you can contact TCA support by opening a ticket and waiting for a reply.

 

 

REVISIONS

One thing we like to know before ordering is whether or not the service has a revision policy. The Content Authority’s revision policy gives you 72 hours from receiving an order to request a revision. You can only ask for a revision if the article doesn’t meet the standards of the tier you have chosen and if the writer didn’t follow the instructions. Of course, TCA has the right to decline your revision request at any given time and for any reason.

 

 

WRITERS

Unfortunately, we didn’t manage to dig out anything about their specific writers. There are no photos of their in-house writers on TCA website. All of their content creators are freelancers who register, create usernames, and take on assignments. We found no guarantee that those writers are native or even near-native English speakers.

 

 

THE ORDER

Once you purchase credits, you’re ready to order. You just need to choose the content type and the writer tier that suits your needs and your budget.

 

The order page itself leaves much to be desired. TCA could add a few additional fields and options that would stimulate the customer to provide more information. For instance, they could add tone, perspective, and audience fields. Also, they should really consider adding an attachment option — sometimes you can’t explain what you need in a few words.

 

You can choose a tier 1, 2, 3, or 4 writers for your order.

 

Tier 1 (Basic) will cost $0.012 per word. TCA claims that this content is suitable for article marketing sites that have no quality demands.

Tier 2 (Great) will cost $0.018 per word. According to TCA, this content is only slightly better than Tier 1, and it won’t pass high-quality guidelines of websites such as Ezine Articles.

Tier 3 (Excellent) will cost $0.023 per word. These articles meet high-quality standards of websites such as Hubpages, InfoBarrel, and Ezine Articles.

Tier 4 (Expert) will cost $0.065 per word. TCA recommends this tier for high-quality copy and web content. Expert authors write these, and the quality level is good enough for any use.

 

They also offer different types of content: standard (we went over those above), rewrite orders, direct orders, and eBooks.

 

Rewrite orders will cost you $0.009 per word.

 

When it comes to rewrite orders, The Content Authority claims that Tier 2 writers are doing those but only guarantee Tier 1 quality, and you will receive a sentence-by-sentence rewrite.

 

From our experience, that isn’t the best way to do a rewrite, and you certainly won’t end up with a good piece of content. TCA tackled this simply by stating that if you want a higher quality of rewrites, you need to pay for a regular order.

 

Oh, and also — if you want TCA to rewrite a text, you have to own it, or they will decline writing it.

 

Direct Orders’ starting price is $0.015 per word, and it depends on the writer.

 

These are simple to ask for — you put a label, choose a writer or a group of writers you want, your minimal word count, writer’s instructions, and desired keywords.

 

eBooks’ starting price is $0.025 per word, and it depends on the writer.

 

This content is written by specific writers, and TCA also offers formatting, editing, and cover services.

 

 

WHAT WE ORDERED

Since the price gap between Tier 3 and Tier 4 is significant, we decided to go with Tier 3 to test their “Excellent” writers.

 

According to TCA, these articles meet high-quality standards. Also, they promise that the writer’s personality will start to shine through in these and that the general word variety is increased at this level. Most writers from this tier are from the UK and the US according to TCA.

 

With this choice, we expected an article that will be above average but not amazing.

 

So we selected original content, filled out the form, wrote down the keyword, and chose maximal density.

 

We asked for an article in the SEO niche. Nothing overly complex, just a task that we usually give to content writing services when we review them. The topic was our standard test article that we send out to all content writing services we review, and we really did expect them to come through.

 

We liked that the ordering process is simple. However, we didn’t like the fact that after we have placed an order, we haven’t received a confirmation email from TCA.

 

Yet another flaw was a very plain order summary that didn’t show our description, word count, or keywords. Although it might seem like a minor thing, it can be inconvenient if you want to re-check your order and see if you forgot to mention something.

 

 

WHAT WE RECEIVED

QUALITY OF THE CONTENT

First of all, fair is fair, our content was done only 7 hours after ordering. However, there was no ETA on the website, and we weren’t able to choose how quickly we needed the content done.

 

We ordered and received the article the same day, which is, in terms of content writing services, a lightning fast turnaround time.

 

Unfortunately, that’s where our satisfaction with this article begins but also ends.

 

The very first flaw we’ve noticed was the fact that our article was a simple block of text. No headings, no highlights, just paragraphs. In 1100 words we have received, there wasn’t a single bolded or italicized word that could break down the monotony. It just went on and on, and if we know anything about writing online, we know that people hate neverending blocks of homogenous text.

 

 

GRAMMAR

The article we’ve received was full of blatant grammar mistakes that a native speaker simply wouldn’t make.

 

Dreadful mistakes such as “search engines ability,” “businesses best friend,” “band from search engines,” and “the over use of keywords” were interspersed throughout the article.

 

To be perfectly honest, these were the ones that really caught my eye, but there were a couple more.

 

 

DEPTH OF RESEARCH

Virtually non-existent. Once you start reading the article, it becomes clear that the writer didn’t research or understand the topic.

 

“While keywords are vital to search engine optimization the over use of keywords can lower your rating with search engines... The problem with using keywords too often is that the content becomes repetitive and a high density of keywords will lower a search engine ranking.”

 

Although this isn’t untrue, a good writer would explain why a high keyword density could have a negative impact on your search engine ranking.

 

 

SENTENCE STRUCTURE

The writer clearly has a limited vocabulary, which is further proof that he/she was in no way a native English writer. In one instance, the word personalize was in four consecutive sentences. However, this wasn’t the only case where a single word protruded through the text as a poke in the reader’s eye. The word content appeared 51 times (about 5% of the text), create (in different forms) appeared 21 times, and vital wasn’t far behind.

 

When it comes to sentences themselves, we don’t have better news. The Content Authority’s Tier 3 writer delivered an article filled with repetitive sentences.

 

“Videos are a vital part of SEO content. Some websites create a video and then use the words from the video as the content. In these cases, the content and the video are identical; allowing visitors to choose between reading or watching the content. Videos are one of the top ways businesses increase their rankings on search engines. Videos are considered essential for SEO.”

 

We’re not sure if this is lazy writing or if the writer was just packing filler content to finish faster. Either way, it was awful to read.

 

Another big flaw in terms of readability of this article was the fact that the writer started many sentences with a gerund.

 

Creating a press release... Creating content that intrigues… Creating content that allows potential… Creating personalized content draws in people… Creating unique content that's personalized…”

 

 

UNIQUENESS

Yes, it was original. As in, it passed Copyscape. However, when we pulled it through content-watch, we saw that this article was a sort of a jigsaw puzzle. 5% of the content came from one website, another 10% from a different one, 14% from a third SEO-related blog, and so on.

 

And that would actually explain the patchy writing. When you’re reading the article, if we dare call it so, you can notice that there’s no cohesion between segments. It is as if each paragraph was an independent structure. Which, apparently, it is.

 

 

FOLLOWING INSTRUCTIONS

Since we didn’t exactly make a long list of instructions, we expected those that we had put to be followed. We asked for the article to be SEO optimized.

 

We also asked for a maximal keyword density. Now, according to The Content Authority, we received a keyword density of 0.4%, which was definitely too low. However, according to Yoast, the keyword was mentioned only twice, which was actually 0.2% keyword density. Definitely too low for Yoast.

 

We won’t even mention transition words, passive voice, or the Flesch test. This article simply couldn’t meet our requirements.

 

 

VALUE FOR YOUR MONEY

Although it has many flaws, the article isn’t completely unusable. It’s ok for low tier content websites. It just isn’t Tier 3. People usually want to get what they paid for, and here, that simply isn’t the case, even at these low prices.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE

The Content Authority really doesn’t offer high quality. However, their prices are incredibly low as well, so their price/quality ratio is just a bit under the perfect line. And although they aren’t the worst, there are services that offer far better content quality in their price range.

 

If you need cheap content, and you need it quickly, TCA will probably be able to comply.

 

So if your budget isn’t ready to withstand the blow of hiring a great content writer, and you’re ready to proofread, correct, and potentially rewrite segments of the article you receive, you can give The Content Authority a chance.

 

For content, they cover these types of services

- Original content writing
- Content rewriting
- eBooks (formatting, editing, cover)
- Press Releases


Standard Orders
Writer's Skill Level: per 100 words
Expert $6.50
Excellent $2.30
Great $1.80
Basic $1.20



Rewrite Orders
Writer's Skill Level: per 100 words
Standard Rewrite $0.90



Direct Orders
Writer's Skill Level: per 100 words
Standard Direct >$1.50*

*The exact price might vary depending on the writer(s) you choose


eBooks
Services: Price
Writing >$2.50 per 100 words*
Formatting Starting price $24.00 (for 3000 words)
Editing Starting price $24.00 (for 3000 words)
Cover $35.00

*The exact price might vary depending on the writer(s) you choose
Review by contentheat
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The Content Authority reviews
The Content Authority's homepage
Order content
The Content Authority's order content page
Manage Orders
The Content Authority's manage orders page
Order summary
The Content Authority's order summary page