Building a beautiful and functional website that effectively achieves its purpose takes an investment of time, money, and commitment to clear communication. Your website is the most important and advantageous way online to communicate what your business is, who you are, and why that matters to the people you seek to influence. You may be doing this well in person and on paper, but how are you doing online? In my years working as a designer I have consistently found that many businesses and organizations are good at telling me about themselves in person but when it comes to their website, the content is lackluster.
Relevant Content Defined
Relevant content will look different for each business and organization based on the products and services that they provide and based on the market they are serving. Relevant content stays within the mission of the business or organization that it represents. Relevant content is content that is of value to the people you are trying to influence to purchase your products, subscribe to your services, or help fund your new start up. For example, if you provide health care services then relevant content could be news & events related to your profession, posts about preventative care, or simply a health fact of the day. Examples of content that can confuse and drive away clients: If your business provides health care services, a post about farm equipment, a page dedicated to local gossip, or an article about saving money on your car insurance. This may sound obvious but it is important to keep this in mind when you begin planning new content.
Planning Content for Your Website
Write Everything Down
Write it down. The most important step in planning content for your website is to write everything down you think about that is related to your products, services, and people that you provide them to. Collect all of your ideas first, before you try to determine if they are a good idea or not. By writing them down you get the ideas out of your head and you free up your brain for the rest of the creative process. Having the same great idea over and over again because you neglected to write it down is an inefficient and unproductive way to work.
At the end of this article I have provided some general types of posts and questions that may help kickstart your creativity for brainstorming.
Organize and Strategize
Once all of your ideas are in writing, it is time to organize them. I suggest organizing your content into different categories of post types. The two biggest overarching categories are time-sensitive and non-time-sensitive content. Once you have determined what content needs posted before or on specific dates then you can begin to fill in the available time slots with an interesting variety of the content posts that are less time specific. One tool that I use to determine if there is a best time of year to post content related to my business is to check Google Trends. This is a great tool that you can search keywords that are related to your business/organization and find out when there are the most searches for them over time.
Consistency is Key
It is better to post new content on your website once a month than posting four times in one week and then nothing for the rest of the quarter. Posting consistently has a two main benefits. It benefits you in that you are creating a reliable source of content for your audience and it shows the search engines that your website is current and relevant. Start off by publishing new content on your website at a sustainable pace. If you have a team of dedicated people who can easily pull off a post each day then do so, but if you are like me and you’re incredibly busy and you are currently the only one who is writing the posts then it may be more sustainable to begin with just one post a month.
A content pool or “post pool” is a collection of posts that you have prepared in advanced to publish at scheduled times. Although it can difficult to resist the urge to publish content that you have just created, it is very important to hold off publishing the new post until the proper time. Creating a post pool will aid you greatly in your new goal of publishing content consistently over time. We all can go through dry spells where we run out of creativity and for many of us work can get so busy that we simply do not have time to produce new content. Having a pool of posts you have not published will allow you to update your website during those times you are feeling uninspired.
Make Like Nike and Just Do It!
The hardest part is often the first step. Begin writing down your ideas on anything that you have as soon as they come to you. Whether you are at a desk, running errands, or on lunch break make sure that you have some way to record your amazing ideas when they pop up. Some of the most brilliant ideas have come to people in the most unexpected places. (Insert Back 2 the Future reference here:) When you have a bit of free time you can pull out the ideas that you have collected and begin to develop them. It is also helpful to set aside a regular day/time that you choose to work on creating new website content. Remember, this is the most cost effective way to market yourself online. By doing this you are providing your audience some of the most valuable resources that you have: your time, effort, and expertise. People can tell if you really care and if you have put effort into your work. People are drawn to this kind of person/business/organization… and so are the search engine bots. This is an investment worth making.
Would you like help coming up with amazing content for your website? Lumné would love to help! Please send us a Quick Message to kickstart your content creation.
Brainstorming and Planning Helpers
General types of posts
- Information about products or services
- New products or services
- Special offers
- How to/ DIY
- History of your business/organization
- Purchase guides on products and services in your field
- News & Events
Starter questions that can help you in the brainstorming process:
- Who are the people that you hope to influence?
- What are their ages?
- What are their habits?
- Where do they live?
- What are their occupations?
- What are the most common services that they subscribe to of yours? Why?
- What is there favorite product of yours that you provide for them? Why?
- Why did they come to you in the first place?
- What social media do they subscribe to?
- Why are you trying to influence these specific people?
- What services does you provide?
- Why do you offer these services?
- How will your services benefit people?
- Do you use your own services?
- Are your services proven?
- Do you have customers who love your services? What do they say about them?
- Do you have written testimonials about how your services have changed someone’s life, business, or way of doing things?
- Do your services benefit the community?
- Why should someone choose your services over another?
- Do you provide your services in a way that others may not?
- What products do you offer to people?
- Why do you offer them?
- What benefit do people have from purchasing them?
- Why should people buy your product instead of someone else’s?
- How often do you introduce new products?
- How do you tell people about your products in person?
- Where are your products available?
- Can they purchase these products online?
- What is used to make your products?
- Is there something unique or important about how your product is made?
- Are there any little know facts or stories about your products?