Content Strategy For Web – Understanding Its Importance
Content strategy is about content creation, planning, delivery and authority. It is a relative new concept in web space and comes hand in hand with user experience, design, SEO, web marketing and public relation. It not only includes the words but the multimedia messages too.
Let us find out the strategies that lead to satisfying users experience and meeting business purpose.
Requirement of a Content Strategy Team
We have often heard that content is the ultimate for a website. But content cannot work on its own except its peer-disciplines. The peer-disciplines are many; to name a few they are User experience, Web Design, Information Architecture, SEO, Public Relation and Building of Brand. The team must look into the totality of content creation including the peer-disciplines – efforts from all the disciplines are required for a good Content Strategy.
Consideration regarding the content and creator
We know that fulfillment of business goal and enhancing user experience is the ultimate objective of Content Strategy. By methods of maintaining the work flow and governance factors while development of content, leads to generation of usable content and meeting the business objectives at the same time.
The content components that need to be in mind are: substance and structure. Substance covers the structure, tone, style of content and the message that we intend to communicate. Structure on the other hand covers the method that we use to optimize and break up the content into successful building blocks.
The people component comprise of workflow and governance. Workflow is all about the tools and process required for creation and maintenance of content. Whereas, governance deals about uniformity, truthfulness and quality of the content.
Consideration regarding these will help you to maintain user experience and achieving business objective.
Keeping the language clean and simple
The content should be created in such a manner that the creator keeps in mind the target audience. If content for a website, which is targeted for a group of low educated people is written in such a fashion that it is not understood by them then it is useless to create the content. It must be written or created keeping the literacy level of the target audience in mind.
Remembering the 5 W’s and H
To have an effective content strategy we must remember the 5 W’s and H. It provides a check list to measure if the strategy is covering all the bases. The 5 W’s are why, what, who, where and when. The H is how.
The significance of Voice and tone
These are the front line of a strategist. The voice should reflect and identify the brand. It should be the same consistent for all the contents. The tone should be so set that it matches the context of the content. It also if taken care of properly enhances the user experience and brand strength.
SEO should be adhered to
The best practices of SEO should be effectively incorporated into content strategy. It needs to embrace content marketing in order to have a higher ranking. It should not be taken for granted that SEO is a dead tactics as claimed by various digital genres. It is likewise important to follow Google’s guide lines for having good search results and not to use any illegal SEO tricks.
Breaking up of content
While designing your website, web developers should design the CMS in such a manner that there are separate fields to upload chunks of your content that you want to upload. By this it will help the flexibility of the content and can be used in different presentation. As for example the desktop version of the page should contain all the chunks whereas the mobile version may not contain all.
Use of Metadata to wrap your content
Developers should wrap the content with metadata enabling greater visibility to search engines and enhance the user experience. It will help your content to be recognized among many, give more meaning to the content when viewed in some other web page and gives more meaning to your content when viewed in other devices.
Embrace web standards
Web standards and HTML 5 are important as they increase visibility to search engines and give a better user experience. It should be incorporated during designing so that your content appears consistent in all browsers, increase the indexing by search engines as it can be completely and thoroughly crawled and you can take advantage of HTML5.
Letting Users to tell their stories
It must be kept in mind that the content that you publish on your web site is not the ultimate. The ultimate is the content that your users publish. Platforms should be created such that your user is allowed to publish their created content.
In order to have a great content strategy the final goal that is user experience and business objective should always be kept in mind.
Now we know what Content Strategy is. The big question that arises is when to implement it? Should the design be made first or the strategy? As we can see it should start from the very inception of the site. It should begin along with designing and be followed up as long the site remains. During design periods web developers should incorporate web standards and HTML5, make platforms ready for user’s content and the like. When the site is up and running the content management team should focus on the other features to have an effective Content management.
The writer, content strategist and designer should work hand in hand to make this strategy effective. The writer writes the contents, the strategist takes care of the 5 W’s and H and the designer makes it possible to implement it. There should be a perfect coordination between the three. The writer must understand the objective of writing, the audience targeted, the strategist should know what to take care of first and the designer should know what to design and implement. It is wise to involve the user too during the process, according to some experts. As because the user is the best judge let them also have a role in designing and implementing the Content Strategy.