After a copyedit, your document will be free of basic errors in spelling, grammar, capitalization, punctuation, numerals, formatting (italics, quotes, numbers, lists, abbreviations) and usage ("can for may", "to, too, two", etc). It will maintain consistency of tense, word choice and terminology and be free of any typographical errors (repeated words, extra punctuation, etc.) A light copyedit may also include formatting for APA or MLA upon request.
*Note that a light copyedit does not address problems with content or style.
A content edit can range from a more involved heavy copyedit to a complete rewrite. This is a very collaborative process.
Typically, a content edit is a very detailed, heavy copyedit designed to help shape your project into something publishable. In addition to everything covered in a copyedit, your document will also be edited for broader issues, such as logic, clarity, wordiness, triteness, ambiguous or incorrect statements, the continuity of style, place, plot and characters and the effectiveness of key stylistic elements such as tone, voice, transitions, tension, figures of speech and believability.
A content edit will also address issues such as the effectiveness of the point of view, strength and variety of characters, melodrama, imagery and emotion, marketability, use of argumentative, passive or otherwise no longer “reader-friendly” tones.
*Note that sentences may be reworded completely to improve these elements.