The biggest mistake when creating a web site or updating a current site is putting the design ahead of content. All too often, all of the initial effort goes into making the site look spectacular, which of course is important, but a spectacular looking site with poor or no content is much like creating a shiny package without knowing what will go in it.
Many times Directors yell “Go!” and the designers take off in one direction while the copywriters go in another. What happens then usually costs time, money and even customers as the website looks as if it was created by two different teams that had no idea what each other was doing.
If your content, your ultimate message, is created first, customers will understand immediately what you, your site and your company is all about. They will be engaged. Customers will read your site and watch videos. Heck, they might even buy something – at least they know what you are selling them. If design is top priority, customers might look at your site and think you have great designers on board, but what does your company do? Instead of learning and becoming informed, your potential customer is wondering why they are even on that page. And guess what? When a customer hits a page, and it’s a bad experience, they will leave and probably never come back. That’s money out of your pocket.
Of course, creating content first isn’t always the easiest thing to do. Some tips to help are:
1. Keep your eyes on the prize. Staying on target with your company’s marketing mission will help in creating content that engages, inspires and ultimately triggers conversions.
2. You can always trim or add according to the final design. Nothing in life is permanent including design, words, image size, et al. What is created can be changed, moved, resized or axed while still delivering your marketing message.
3. A Content Strategist can help. Copywriters, designers and creative directors don’t always have the same vision – or even speak the same language. A Content Strategist can be the one to keep all parties involved on the same page, communicating needs and wants in a language that everyone understands. Put simply, a Content Strategist keeps all teams in tune with each other.
Sawfish Online provides content strategy along with content creation. We have copywriters, marketing strategists and designers who have learned the hard way on the right way to create and brand company’s websites.
Visit us at www.sawfishonline.com to learn more about how Sawfish Online can help your content, strategy and SEO.
Larry is a content marketing professional, an experienced copywriter, avid fisherman, amateur sailor, teller of kinda funny jokes, pancake connoisseur and an overall OK guy who founded Sawfish Online.