Based on our experience, the uploading of content is one of the key factors causing delays in going live on a new website. Here are some recommendations from our team:
When you are developing a new website you don’t just want a re-hash of your old website (if you had one), or an empty shell website with lots of blank pages and ‘content coming soon messages’. You want a website that engages your target audience, gives them the information they are looking for and offers an enjoyable moment in their online day!
Planning and preparing content for your website is an essential part of any website project. Piquant has ten years of experience in designing and building website projects for clients (shout out here to all our fabulous clients) and on that journey, we’ve picked up a few tips that can help make sure your website is ready for your launch date and does the job you need it to do!
1. Define the team member(s) who will be responsible for uploading content to the new website
We’ve found that when a client gives someone on their team the responsibility for preparing and uploading the content to the new website it makes a huge difference, not just for meeting the launch deadline but also for the quality and impact of the content. Remember, your website is your shop window to the world; you want it to reflect your brand, and communicate your message. So, have a look around your team and see who is the person to take responsibility for this project. UX & Design Lead at Piquant, Victoria Brunetta says:
“We know that when we work with someone from the client’s side who has responsibility for the content and who is really excited about the web project, it has an amazingly positive impact on the whole project. We can support them technically and editorially to make sure the website is relevant and accessible for their target audience.”
Piquant is here to support your team members with training on the content management system (CMS), building out a content calendar and maximising templates to create consistency of content type, language and tone associated with your company. This is without a doubt our top tip; assign a team member and also make sure there is time in their calendar to complete this task.
2. Use the sitemap to start creating content before you attend your CMS (content management system) training session.
At Piquant our experienced trainers will always guide our clients on how to upload content during online training sessions and send follow-up step-by-step training guides. Our web team believes that initiating content creation for a new website well in advance of the training session is super important. Waiting until the training session to begin producing content can lead to unnecessary delays and slow down the overall progress of the website development.
By starting early, you ensure a smoother transition during the training phase, allowing your wider team to engage more effectively and make meaningful contributions. This proactive approach provides time for content refinement, reviews, and adjustments, contributing to a more successful and timely website launch and most importantly, a happy client which is our ultimate priority.
In our experience, a good time to really get focussed on content production is as soon as you have signed off on the Information Architecture (IA) and frontend design, and have received the sitemap from the web team. This approach ensures that content creation aligns seamlessly with the approved structure and design elements, optimising the integration of text, images, and multimedia components.
Just so we are all on the same page, here are some basic terminology definitions::
- Information Architecture (IA): Crafting an intuitive roadmap for your website, information architecture ensures seamless navigation, optimising user experience by organising content with purpose and clarity.
- Frontend Design: Frontend design is the aesthetic heart of your site. It’s where visuals meet functionality, bringing the brand to life with engaging layouts, colours, and user-friendly interfaces.
- Sitemap: This is an easy-to-follow document, that clearly identifies every section of the website so that you know exactly what content you need and where on the website it will live.
Using the sitemap and frontend design as your guiding framework for content creation ensures alignment with the established structure and visual elements of the website. Our web team uses the sitemap to organise content and map out the hierarchy and flow of information. The sitemap is essential for the frontend design and the CMS development.
Our UX & Design Lead Victoria, is extremely passionate about this aspect of web development. She suggests that by waiting until the foundational aspects are approved, you mitigate the risk of having to make significant content adjustments later in the process. Victoria also included that she has learned the hard way! (and we all know what that means – hours of extra unnecessary workload). By following this step, you enhance the effectiveness of your website, creating a seamless user experience that aligns with the intended design and navigational structure.
3. Engaging and relevant content is crucial for a successful website
Even a well-designed site won’t perform if the content isn’t well-crafted, relevant, and aligned with your brand aka ‘on brand’, our head of Brand and Strategy, Hugh is sick to death of us saying this, sorry Hugh! By the way, when we say content, we’re referring to all the copywriting on your website but also the photographs, images, video clips and so on.
- Photographs – have you a bank of great images that really represent your brand and tell your story? Or are you hoping to include photos of your team?
- Videos – perhaps you would really like looping videos to feature on your website or have an ‘About Us’ video on your home page? The Sitemap and Frontend Design will clearly identify where video can be featured on your website.
- Animations – do you want to include animations on your site for demonstration or informational purposes?
- Illustrations – perhaps you’d like a suite of on-brand illustrations representing your products or services?
- Copy Writing – this is going to include all the information on the website from the ‘how to get in contact’, to the ‘meet the team’, to the news articles, service descriptions, product write-ups and everything else. It’s important that you have a consistent tone of voice that represents your brand throughout and our number one recommendation – use plain English and short sentences.
Even with a well-designed site, optimal performance hinges on content that is well-crafted, relevant, and aligned with your brand. The quality and relevance of your content play a pivotal role in engaging visitors, conveying your message effectively, and establishing a strong online presence.
If you need help with any aspect of the content creation Piquant can help. Our in-house team can create videos, shoot photographs, develop illustrations or anything else that you would like to create for your website.
We hope these tips will help you when preparing for your go-live date for your new website and remember, the Piquant team is always here to help! Get in touch with us at [email protected] for more information!