There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to research a particular interest online and not finding enough content. You end up running down a rabbit hole, potentially spending hours lost in website after website seemingly related to your interest, and what you find is decent visual design and no information -- again and again. It wastes so much time and you’re still left wondering about your topic.
Imagine how consumers feel when they encounter this obstacle trying to research a purchase decision!
The fact is many companies are notorious for this. Their website is interesting to look at, but the content about their product or service is vague at best. There are no pricing details, no contact information, there’s nothing explaining how their product works exactly or how to use it, the blogs haven’t been updated in years… and consumers will leave frustrated and NEVER VISIT AGAIN.
If this is your website, you’ve lost countless potential customers and you don’t even know it. So, how do you fix that?
Companies that have the most success online understand the value of their content and they build content driven websites. But what is a content driven website exactly, and why is that so important? Read on to find out!
What is a Content Driven Website?
As you think about updating your website or building a new one, the temptation will be to focus on how you want it to look. But don’t make this mistake. Your content should be your first focus, and then you develop your design around that.
But what is a content driven website and how do you make one?
In short, a content driven website is one that focuses first on consumer needs. Your visitors are coming to find information first, not necessarily to look at pretty things. A content driven website ensures they find what they’re looking for. It’s kind of like a visually interesting, super organized library focused specifically on one topic or area of interest online.
When building one, you should focus on simple and easy to interpret navigation, consistent and organized page structure, and share robust, detailed information about your product or service area. You want to think about what information your consumers might want, and how they might look for that so your website can provide for their behavior and needs. Then you implement design practices and visual elements to make it more appealing.
4 Reasons Why a Content Focused Website is so Important
Many companies focus so much energy on the aesthetics of their website and the code that supports it that they forget their true priority -- the information they’re actually trying to share. Here are 4 reasons your content should never become an afterthought:
- Maximize Your Conversions: Visitors to your website are there for one main reason – to find information. If you become the best at making that easy for them to find, they’re more likely to stay and become a customer. If you don’t provide them with the content they’re looking for, they will go elsewhere to find it and you will lose out on a potential customer.
- Improve Your SEO: How are consumers going to find your website if you’re not even appearing in their search results? Browser engines like Google have taken an increasing focus on prioritizing websites that have lots of relevant and accurate content that relates to user searches. So, if you want to boost your ranking in search results, you should build a content driven website.
- Improve Your Reputation: If your website makes it easy for visitors to find what they’re looking for, excels at addressing their pain points and answering their questions, and gives them new information to consider, your reputation as a business will get major boosts! You’ll get positive reviews, be touted as an excellent provider in customer service, and may even be considered a thought leader in your industry. This leads to word-of-mouth conversions and more customers going forward. It’s a great way to scale your business.
- Save Money: Building an effective content driven website with optimized hierarchy requires having a plan. While initially this might seem like a tedious step, in the end it will save your business from high development costs. The problem with design focused websites is you have to go back and restructure again and again to make room for the content you didn’t plan for. Worst yet, you’ll have to make changes or rebuild because the website is failing. If you have a plan for success from the beginning and know exactly how many pages you need and what your structure will be, you can avoid the hidden costs of poor planning.
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The Cardinal Sins of Poor Website Design
If you’re not planning for and structuring your website correctly, with a focus on content and prioritizing consumer needs, you can be certain you’re going to have low visitor counts and very few conversions. Your visitors are just going to go looking elsewhere.
Here are several cardinal sins of poor website design that could be costing you customers:
- Slow loading speeds because of too many graphics, images, and code
- Gated content
- Using popups
- Confusing navigation (too many choices, lengthy titles, using technical jargon, poorly organized, not linked correctly)
- Placing valuable information too far down in the webpage or in places it’s likely to be overlooked
- Not sharing enough information about what your product is, how it works, and new ways of using it
- Using too much technical jargon
- Not updating information as things change
- Not providing interactive content that encourages users to engage with your website
- Not providing pricing
- Not providing thorough and multiple forms of contact information
- Not updating your blog with new and interesting posts
As your business grows and changes over time, your website needs to be updated to reflect that. Or perhaps you don’t have a website at all. Regardless, building a website can be exhausting and it can be tempting to skip important steps or to be distracted away from what’s truly important. Why not leave it to professionals who have years of experience in modern, custom web design?
At Inline Marketing, we take a customer first, content driven approach. We understand the importance and value of getting your business front and center and providing content that engages and delights your visitors. Contact us today to discuss your unique website needs, and how we can help you build the content driven website of your dreams.