Why Is Content So Important Before Starting Web Design
Long story short: good content is the guaranteed way to improve your brand reputation, increase website conversion, and overall business activities. Now that we’ve locked your attention, let us tell you more about how and why you should be exceptionally mindful of content creation before jumping into your web design process.
Whether you are planning to design your website yourself or you are going to enlist the services of a web designer, there is one crucial part in building a website that is often forgotten.
You guessed it right. We’re talking about content.
38% of users will stop engaging with a website if the content or layout is unattractive. Now you may think that the aesthetics and accessibility of your website are its most crucial components, but that’s not all. Not writing engaging, focused, and relevant content will make it a struggle for you to keep your visitors stay longer on your website and later convert them into paying customers.
You may even struggle to attract searchers to your site, especially when it comes to organic traffic, i.e., traffic that has not been paid for. In other words, search engines probably won’t even know your website exists, which is practically a nightmare.
Still not convinced that content is needed before starting the process of web design?
Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about creating content for your website, including 5 top tips from content writing experts that will help you write killer content like a pro.
Table of contents
What is website content?
Before we dive into the importance of content creation, let’s get back to basics. Website content refers to any piece of written or visual material that is displayed on your website. This includes your homepage, your product description pages, and any blogs you post.
Effective content doesn’t always come in the form of text. A common misconception is that content only means the written words on your site. However, content also consists of multimedia elements such as images, videos, infographics, sound, animation and so much more. Since we’re talking about multimedia, videos are a highly effective way to engage with your audience and deliver important information, and can make your users’ quest for information an effortless one.
It is important to remember that every piece of content you create or have created on your behalf should have a clear goal in mind. This could be to encourage users to buy a product, request an appointment, sign up for your email newsletter, follow you on social media or fill out a contact form. No element placed on your site should be dispensable for the overall experience.
“Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet, just as it was in broadcasting. »Bill Gates
Why is website content so important?
Time to get to the gist. Although the way a website looks is vital to its overall success, attractive visuals are not the only factor that will make your website successful, and must not interfere with the main task your user wishes to accomplish from their visit.
1. Higher ranking on Search Engines
It only takes 0.05 seconds for a user to decide whether or not they want to stay on your website. If your visitors can’t find the information they’re looking for on your website, they will leave and look for another one. That means your website is probably doing more harm than good to your business.
If you want the online part of your business to do well and enjoy high levels of customer engagement, high conversion rates, and be favorably looked upon by search engines such as Google, you need to ensure that your site also offers great content.
Creating detailed, relevant, and quality content while using the right keywords helps search engines know what your website is exactly about. When you optimize your website and focus on clearly communicating your purpose throughout the vessel that is your content, your rankings will improve and that way, every post, photo, or article you upload will easily reach your target audience.
However, why do you need to create your content before you start the design process
2. Convert visitors into paying customers
Content is not only there to serve search engines, it’s also made to answer your users’ needs. Users spend 5.59 seconds looking at a website’s written content. This is your only window to deliver effective content, portray your business in a positive light and help users find answers. Think about it this way. If you were directed to a website that features a ton of stunningly beautiful images but provides no information about the products or services themselves, would you be likely to visit this website again?
The answer is probably no, and this is the main issue with designing a website before deciding upon its content. A content-first approach prioritizes your brand and key message and makes it easier to convey who you are and what you’re offering to your users.
When users come to your website, they are often looking for descriptive information and details on your products or services, and this is where content comes into play.
Providing users with what they’re looking for will make it more likely for them to stay on your website and invite them to take action, thus increasing your conversion rate. And the best part is, it’s not a one-time thing only.
88% of online consumers are less likely to return to a website if they had a bad experience. A content-oriented approach will create a website that users enjoy visiting and will visit time and time again. This is why design and content creation need to work in harmony. If you do that, your website is more likely to provide consistent content throughout its different pages, while avoiding redundant elements. Isn’t that a dream?
The image below shows how quality content is responsible for converting search visitors.
3. Time and money-saving design process
Search engines and users aside, your web designers and programmers will thank you for creating your content before giving them the green light on the designing process.
A typical website will take 14 weeks at minimum to launch. With deadlines on the clock and creative ideas overflowing, the designing process can be a stressful task for the whole team. Designers might have several ideas on how the website would look and might get lost in the process, most times leading to a poorly designed website. You’re frustrated, they are tired; nothing useful is happening.
In addition, when you focus on design rather than content in the first stage, clashes are bound to occur between designers and programmers. That way, time, money, and energy get wasted pretty much in vain; 3 valuable elements that are not always abundant and in your favor.
However, when you decide on your content first, you will point the designers towards the north star and set them on the roadmap to success. Once guided, they will be able to develop a story that conveys your identity and mission and choose the layout that better tells it.
With a clear and defined structure, clashes between designers and programmers are reduced and the team can be more cooperative and productive reaching the result. You will be satisfied, they will be happy; it’s a win-win situation for all parties involved.
Now that you know what matters, let’s give you the tools to get you to action.
How to write your website content
Want to learn how to create amazing content for your website? Check and adapt our top tried-and-tested tips below:
1. Know your audience.
First things first. You cannot hope to write engaging content if you don’t know everything there is to know about your target audience. Take your time, do your research and find and use words that better resonate with your audience.
2. Use the active voice.
By using active rather than passive verbs, you create more user-friendly and easily digestible sentences, and this is what users are usually looking for. Using fewer words makes the content more concise and efficient and creates a faster-moving narrative.
3. Promote specific examples.
Showcase what your products or services can do using real examples rather than vague declarations. Instead of « MEM makes your life easier! », write « Sell, market and manage your business easily with MEM ». No one likes an empty promise.
4. Make text scannable.
The way people consume content online is very different from the way they do on other mediums. So, if you want to keep their attention, your content needs to be easily skimmable. Avoid bulky and stressful paragraphs, and opt for grouping text into 3-5 pairs.
5. Enlist the services of a professional content writer.
Not everyone has the time, resources, or expertise to write great content. If this is the case for you, – which is okay – you may want to consider outsourcing this task to a third party for the best results.
Are you looking for help designing a functional and successful website for your business? Or would you like to find out how you can combine great content with cutting-edge design? Book a free consultation now.