If you’ve ever spent a Sunday afternoon binge-watching house flipping shows, you know the importance of having a plan before diving into a big project. Without one, mistakes are made, arguments are had, and a whole lot of drama (and wasted money) ensues.
The same concept applies to content creation.
A well-thought-out content strategy is critical to delivering useful and useable content that your users can navigate easily and efficiently.
According to our in-house content strategy expert, Sammi Gassel, UX Content Strategist, content strategy is a lot like a house blueprint. And that blueprint is the basis of your website’s success.
“You wouldn’t build a house without a blueprint. From an aesthetics perspective, it could look jumbled if you realize halfway through building that you missed some things. From a functionality standpoint, putting in the wrong pipe could render your plumbing useless. And most importantly, the house wouldn’t be built on a solid foundation and could crumble around you. The same goes for web content (sans the physical safety risk),” explains Sammi.
Content Strategy Provides Design, Functionality, And Foundation
“Without those three elements in place, your content won’t attract audiences, won’t lead them to take action, and ultimately won’t be beneficial to the health and stability of your organization.”
Content Strategy: What Is It And Why Does a Website Need It?
Content strategy is a plan that identifies your business goals — and uses content to get you there. It identifies what already exists on your site, what should exist, and, most importantly, why it should exist.
The goal of content strategy is simple — to create content that users actually want. A strong content strategy helps ensure your content is relevant, engaging, long-lasting, and cohesive.
What Does Content Strategy Look Like?
Content strategy is not a one-off concept. Instead, it exists in stages:
- Audit & Analyze: Identify business goals, determine targets to achievement, interview stakeholders, assess the landscape of competitors or comparable sites, and analyze current websites.
- Strategize: Determine content (including what needs to be completely redone, touched-up, and archived), taxonomy, sourcing, voice, brand definition, and workflow.
- Create: Write search-engine-optimized content, and produce other appropriate assets.
- Maintain: Audit content periodically, and stay up-to-date with current trends and user needs.
5 Quick Tips On Creating Your Content Strategy
- Center your content strategy on your organization’s goals and user needs — and make sure you know how you will measure your outcomes.
- Create and structure content based on how your audience thinks according to user testing and market research.
- Ensure accessibility of your website, including adhering to all ADA requirements.
- Observe current trends or standards, such as inclusive language or online reviews.
- Leverage social media, and choose channels that are the most popular and helpful to your audience.