We live in an era that demands companies produce interactive, frequently updated, and useful content for their websites. It’s no longer sufficient to have a static and unchanging brochure site. You’ve got to engage your users and give them a reason to visit your site and to keep coming back for more.
Creating great content, however, is easier said than done. To get you started, here are three tips for creating excellent content that experts agree will make your site — and your business — stand out from the crowd:
1. Be Relevant
The most important attribute of great content, according to experts, is that it be relevant to your users. This means you think about your audience and what they’re likely to want to know. It also means that you think creatively and come up with content that they didn’t know they were looking for, but once they see it, they’re excited to have found it.
“This content needs to provide a resource, information and benefit to your audience,” said Jennifer Manger, CEO of the marketing and development consulting firm Manger & Associates. “It needs to be relevant to the audience. Individuals are bombarded with tons of information from multiple locations, [and] in order to engage with your audience you need to provide content that is relevant to their needs and wants.”
Internet marketing consultant Geoff Caplan agrees. He said that relevant content benefits your users and also pushes your site to the top of search engine results.
“Relevant content not only delivers a positive user experience, but it will ‘attract’ search engines in a meaningful way,” Caplan said. “There is so much focus on organic SEO these days, and rightly so, but I would always advocate relevant and meaningful content as the prime objective. It will ultimately win out.”
2. Support Your Organization’s Mission
Your content must also support the mission of your business or organization, and this requires, that you understand your mission and what kind of innovative content might help it.
“I think marketers need to think about content as conveying your business’s mission, objectives, initiatives and setting expectations for the user,” Manger said. “Users want to know what they are getting and when. They need to be able to count on you for the information they are looking for. It’s all about not letting your user or customer down.”
This doesn’t mean that all your content should be about your business, but that it be about topics that support your business. Therefore, if you have a pet supply company, you might provide articles about pet care, contests for pet supplies, or other content that makes users want to hang around, engage with your brand, and, ultimately, buy your products.
3. Build a Friendly User Experience
If you want people to be engaged with your site, you need to engage them with interactive content that draws them in and makes them feel like they’re part of your community. In order to do this, your site, app, social media platform, or other forum needs to be easy-to-navigate, clear, and focused.
“You need to think about the content delivery system,” Manger said. “With an app it needs to be efficient and helpful. In terms of social media, this is providing authentic and relevant content that the user/customer/participant will want to engage with your business.”
Caplan concurred, but he stresses that design can’t make up for poor content. He said there needs to be a balance between the two.
“Technology and user-friendly, index-able site navigation helps, but it will never replace the value of keyword placement within content that is meaningful, informative and useful,” Caplan said.
Creating engaging and effective content is a lot of work, but it can also be fun. It will also help you hone your sense of who your customers are, what you have to offer, and what your business is all about.