How To Create Content For An Amazing Website Redesign

Style and Substance — Great website design demands great content. 

When you think about great website design, you probably imagine a beautiful color palette, intuitive navigation, sleek typography, and the perfect balance of white space. It’s unlikely you first think about the words on the website much — After all, you can work on those later.

The truth is the best websites are the perfect balance of style and substance, of design and content, of visuals and words. Words are another way to reinforce your brand, create an emotional response in your audience, and share the values your business holds. When you bake that content and approach into the overall creation of your website, you will create something beautiful that resonates with your audience.

Why do you need high-quality content for your website?

The best writing combines a deep understanding of your audience with the business values you hold most dear. It expresses your uniqueness, brand, and an approach in a relatable way and helps you build trust with your customers. On a more practical level, highly-relevant, targeted content builds your authority, gets shared by your readers, and appears higher in search results.

When you build high-quality content into your website design you encourage people to stick around. Your wording and messages emphasize the qualities you want to share, and that all words together to create a positive association with your website, business, and brand.

What makes content great?

Although there’s not a definitive list of what makes great content, there are some strong guidelines — Great content does one or more of the following:

  • It understands what your readers want and speaks to their needs — Your content answers their questions, solves a problem, or provides genuinely useful, relevant information.

  • It shares the values, beliefs, and approach of your business — The wording, approach, tone, and style reflect what your business aspires to be. It brings out those themes and makes them real to your audience.

  • It provides different ways of looking at a subject — Whether it’s an interesting opinion, simplifying complex topics, in-depth research and resources, or powerful insight, it gives the reader food for thought.

  • It educates and informs your readers — Your content might teach useful skills or provide an easier way to do things.

  • It inspires and entertains your audience — Perhaps your content creates a sense of connection or an emotional reaction. It might raise a smile or create an “Aha!” moment.

The type of content you create will vary depending on the needs of your readers, but if there’s one golden rule, it is this:

Always put the needs of your readers first and create content from their point of view.

This has several advantages, it:

  • Shows a deep understanding of your customer, allowing you to connect with them.

  • Shares important information with your audience, building your credibility.

  • Builds trust with your customers, meaning they are more likely to buy from you.

  • Creates shareable, relevant content.

A word of warning about reusing old content

You can’t just reuse old content and hope it works. Your readers are very wise to spam, scams, and writing with little or no value. Publish content like that, and it can badly damage your credibility. Instead, invest in high-quality writing and make it an integral part of your website design. Another thing to avoid is reusing printed content. Good writing is best when it suits the medium — Writing created for print often won’t work on websites, and vice versa. Instead, it’s best to approach writing online with a fresh, new perspective.

Guidelines for creating beautiful website content

Everyone’s approach to creating excellent writing is going to be slightly different. Here’s a set of guidelines we’ve found incredibly useful when it comes to creating exciting, relevant, shareable work, especially as part of a website design or redesign project.

Decide on the type of content you need

Content comes in many different flavors and forms, and it’s vital to integrate it with your overall website design. Although your main form of content is likely to be writing, you shouldn’t be limited to that. Think about the main purpose of your website and create content to guide your audience to that purpose. The type of content you need might include:

  • Website copy to position your business in the best possible light and provide compelling “calls to action.”

  • Product and service descriptions for what your business offers.

  • A clear description of the benefits and unique selling points your products and services have.

  • Research and resources to help your customers out.

  • Knowledge bases, FAQs, and support materials so people can get the answers they need.

  • White papers that build your authority and credibility.

  • Infographics to present complex information in a compelling way.

  • Beautiful images to share the benefits and features of what you sell.

Really think about what’s most useful, both to your audience and to your business goals. That will help you create a shortlist of content you need to get into your site before it launches.

In particular, you’ll want to really dig into two main areas — Positioning and then messaging.

Positioning your brand

Positioning is all about standing apart from the dozens of other websites your reader is going to visit that day. It partly happens through having a visually distinctive website — Great design, a thoughtful brand, things your potential customer can latch on to. But it also relies on carefully selected word usage, pulling them in, making them feel a connection.

That’s why it’s so important to build your business values into your messaging — It helps your customers connect with your website, and by extension your business. It helps you stand apart from your competitors.

Getting the messaging right

Your messaging further defines aspects of your brand and should clearly state the key points you want an audience to take away. A good way to think about this is to put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think: “What are the one or two key points I remember from looking at that website.” Remember that it’s probably going to be more of an impression or emotional reaction than a specific, solid message.

You want to build your page content to emphasize those one or two key messages, whether it’s about value, speed, quality, ease-of-use, functionality, or something else. You can even test variations of your messaging using A/B split testing to see what resonates more with your customers.

Structuring your content

It’s vital to plan out the type of content you need and organize it into different areas. You’ll want to structure your content into a hierarchy. This might look like:

High-level content

  • Your homepage — A high level overview of your products, services, and business, together with benefits and unique selling points. Remember your homepage needs to clearly focus on the main message you want to provide to your customers — Why should they buy from you? Explain how you solve their problems, meet their needs, and provide social proof.

  • Main products and services — An overview of your key business offerings.

  • Portfolio / clients — Examples of your products in action, case studies, the clients who use your services, etc.

  • Support — Information on how to use your products including knowledge bases, trouble shooting guides, and anything else to make your customer’s life better.

  • About — An overview of your organization and business — What are your main business beliefs, how do you approach customers, why do you do what you do?

  • Contact — The various ways people can get in contact with your business.

Mid-level content

Your mid-level content will be linked from the other key pages above. This mid-level content will vary from website to website, but could include:

  • Product and service descriptions — More detailed descriptions of your products and services, perhaps including technical specifications.

  • Use cases — Examples of how your products and services can be used in the real world.

  • Portfolio and projects — Details of previous work and case studies of your products and services in action.

  • The people in your organization — What do your people do, and how do they make a customer’s life better.

  • Mission and values — Details on your approach to business, focusing on your main brand values.

  • Reviews and testimonials — Genuine feedback from your clients and what they think of your services. This type of social proof is very important.

  • Client list — Details of the clients who use your services and what they think.

  • Support — Detailed product support pages together with user guides and knowledge bases to help people self-diagnose and report problems.

Detailed content

Sometimes you might want to drop down to a third level of content and provide a high level of detail. Generally, the further down the content hierarchy you go, the more detailed and specialized your content can be. When it comes to detailed content, your needs will vary according to what you want your website to do. Above all, make sure your content is clear, correct, relevant, easy to understand, and practical.

Organizing your content

Save yourself a headache later on, and organize all the content you need to create. Go through each piece and do the following:

  1. Give it a status — Whether it currently exists, needs a rewrite, or needs to be written from scratch.

  2. Give it a priority — How urgent and important is this piece to your website? Does it need to be in place before you launch, or can you create it later? More on that below.

  3. Assign responsibility — Make sure whoever you assign the content to knows they are accountable and when you need the content by.

  4. Track the content — As content gets created, track it through the process, including when it needs to be reviewed, if it’s been finalized, and whether it’s ready for publication.

Prioritize content to align with your website launch plan

When you’re thinking about content needs, it’s useful to prioritize it as follows:

  • Pre-launch content — The content you include on your website so it’s there at launch. This should include all of your current business offerings, website copy, and business benefits.

  • Early stage content — This is content you’ll add in the first few days and weeks after launch. This could include short blog posts, knowledge bases, customer support materials, and helpful resources.

  • Ongoing content — This will be your longer-term publishing schedule. Blog posts, white papers, insights, and more would all fit in here.

Create a publishing schedule so you know the type of content you need, including deadlines and format.

Look at what your competitors are doing

You want to get ahead of your competitors, so take a good look at the type of content they’re creating, and see how you can do better. In particular:

  • How can you polish your product and service descriptions so they communicate better than your competitors?

  • Do you have more unique selling points you can bring out in your website copy?

  • How can you position your brand and values ahead of others?

  • What are you going to compete on, and how do you bring that out in your copy? (e.g. price, timeliness, quality, ease-of-use.)

Create a style guide to make it easier for others to create content

As a  business owner, you don’t have the time to create all the content yourself. That means hiring experts — Freelancers, employees, and others to fill in the gaps. A ”style guide” is a document you can use to help them fill in the gaps. Your style guide should include:

  • The approach you want — What tone do you want the content to take and how it should speak to your readers?

  • The outcomes you want from the content — What is the call to action and ultimate goal?

  • The key benefits and brand of your business — What values do you want to bring out and share?

  • The narrative and story you want to create — What is the journey you want to take your readers on?

  • The formatting and layout you want to use — What is the best way to put the key points across?

Share the style guide with your content creators and it will mean fewer revisions and rewrites.

Put together a plan, structure, and feedback process  for your content

There are a couple more things you need to do to create the perfect content process:

Plan out your content, in detail

Once you know the type of content you need, and the priority of that content, you need to create a publishing schedule and editorial calendar. List all of the key pieces of content together with who has responsibility for creating them and where they are in the writing and editing process.

Make sure everyone understands their accountability and deadlines, and build in enough time for reviewed, feedback, and rewrites. Tools like Trello are great for editorial calendars and tracking where your content is.

Create a structure for your content

Consistency is very important when it comes to websites. This is why having a style guide is so vital — It allows your employees and freelancers to write consistently, using the same tone, theme, and approach in all of your online content.

Each of the different types of content you create needs to have a template or structure. For example, product descriptions will include the name, an image, key benefit, technical specifications, price, and possibly other information. Knowledge bases will have detailed step by step guides.

Create templates for the various different types of content and share those with your content creators.

Have an effective review and feedback process

No piece of content is right first time. Get an effective feedback process in place with your content creators. Amends, tweaks, and reviews should be as fast and easy as possible. Tools like Google Docs and Gather Content can make this process relatively painless!

If you’re going through a content review process it’s worth creating a good workflow. Make sure you can easily track where each piece of content is in the creation and review cycle, and clearly communicate responsibilities and tasks to your people. This will make them accountable and ensure they can provide the right input and feedback to create excellent content. You can track this in a spreadsheet or online tool like Trello.

Bringing your website to life with top notch content

As you can see, creating content is an essential part of designing and bringing your website to life. In fact, you need to think about and plan your content strategy before you start designing web pages. When you consider the needs of your audience, their journey through your website, and how you can help them, you create a very powerful connection.

Unique, useful, compelling content is how you get ahead of your competitors, create trust with your customers, and ultimately create a website people want to come back to again and again.


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