Assignment Style Guide

Client Information 

Content Guideline Checklist 

General outline

Intro

1-3 intro paragraphs generally about the type of product,

Products

It’s going to be a subheading of the general type of product, then the affiliate link under that, then a blurb/description of the specific product from the link.

Repeat repeat repeat until you hit word count.

This is the example:
https://www.caranddriver.com/car-accessories/g36817083/hitch-mounted-cargo-carriers-for-road-trippers/

You won’t be including images. The descriptions should be a little longer than that. But those are the only differences. Regardless of keyword format, if a product is specific to a certain model of car, we must format the title, the keyword, every mention as make, model, product.

So for example, Honda Civic air filter. 

Content Style

  • Use the serial/Oxford/Harvard comma. 
  • Language: Simple, no jargon, professional, and fact driven. 
  • Tone: Friendly, helpful, reassuring, informative, understanding, and sincere. 
  • Help users scan the article 
  • Do NOT include the word “best.” If based on Amazon, etc. rankings use “Top Ranked;” if picked by experts, use “Experts Recommended;” if picked subjectively, use “Our Picks/Favorite”
    • Examples of phrases you can use: We’d choose, Top picks, Recommend, How to choose, We love, Deals/best deals, Experts recommend, Most popular, Highest/Top rated, Coolest, Favorite
  • If including how to replace/install section, if there is any information that exists around that information on the following sites, pull and use that information in the content were applicable: Car and Driver, Road and Track, and Autoweek
  • Specify how the list was compiled in the introduction — e.g., Amazon rankings, expert recommendations, etc. 
  • Directly beneath the introduction, put a bullet with the most relevant previous Gear Team article.
  • Short paragraphs and short sentences 
  • Each sentence is one idea 
  • Paragraphs should have no more than 3-5 sentences 
  • Create lists if needed 
  • Never use a metaphor, simile, or figure of speech you are used to seeing in print 
  • Never use a long word where a short one will do 
  • If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out 
  • Never use the passive where you can use the active 
  • Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent  
  • Talk like a human – everyday words 
  • Use AP style.  

Linking  

  • You will be including affiliate links. There is no limit. If you mention a product, link to it. These are the only sites you’ll be getting them from:
  • Use Tire Rack and Weathertech as the first links in your article. If you need more affiliate links, you are free to move to Amazon after exhausting those websites.
  • They do NOT want homepage or category URLs for affiliate links. You should link to actual product pages only. 
  • You’ll be getting the links yourself from the above list when you write the article. You’ll include the link when you mention a product.
  • The affiliate links can be placed anywhere.
  • Include at least one Car and Driver link within the article. 
  • Link to as many relevant internal articles as possible from Car and Driver, Road & Track, and Autoweek in the body. 
  • Whenever a specific model is mentioned, link to the Car and Driver Make/Model page.
  • Link to as many relevant Gear Team stories as possible.
  • Anything related to gifts for car enthusiasts or high-end membership clubs, link to or include The Track Club by Road & Track.
  • Anything related to kids or products for children, link to or include Road & Track Crew.
  • Include at least one resource link within the article.
  • If including a how to install section, check the following sites for related links, and link to one if possible – Car and Driver, Road and Track, or Autoweek.
  • The Where to Buy section should ONLY be affiliate links. Not all links in the article. 
    • Use the actual URL, not hyperlinked text.
    • Make it a bulleted list.

Formatting  

  • Use the Auto Accessories/Aftermarket Accessories template.
  • Use the exact subheadings provided, paying attention to if they’re H1 or H2.
    • If you cannot find enough information for a provided subheading, skip it.
  • Format all subheadings with Heading 2 formatting. 
  • Use bullet points whenever possible. (VERY IMPORTANT) 
  • Do not include images.
  • The keyword can be rearranged to make sense.
  • Include the disclaimer in the template for the How To section if you are including that section.

Restrictions  

  • Do not mention or link to any company that could be considered a competitor of the client. 

Additional Guidelines 

  • Do not write an introduction to the article that does not give the user immediate information they are searching for. 
  • The keyword should ideally be the first word in the article. Place it as far left and to the top as possible. 
  • Do not include any filler sentences like, “Here’s what you’ll learn…” 
  • Always add in alternative names on a document or term to the article. It should just be written in the very top right next to the main keyword.

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Sample Content

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