THE Most Important Part of Web Design Process? Content!
THE single thing that holds up on time website creation is content.
And it is THE single most important part of the design process.
Your content is the key part of your message and I build your website around your message, your content. My job is to highlight your message via a visual presentation that catches your visitors’ attention, and captures the hearts and minds of your ideal clients.
While I could set up a framework that holds your content without seeing and interacting with it first, I’ve found that I work best when I have the content and can then create the flow of words in a visual way that works, that directs the visitor’s eye. It also helps me build the nuances of design that most particularly express you into the framework.
Often I sit with the content and allow it to inform me how it wants to be held on the site, how it can be optimally expressed. I put it on the page, look at it. Not a brief look . I look at it again and again and again some more. I feel where it doesn’t work in the page and then? Then I sleep with it, marinating in my body-mind-heart. That’s where the ‘magic’ occurs. In my sleep. That’s where I know what to do and it bubbles up into awake awareness.
It is important that your content flows seamlessly and intentionally through the website,
that your visitors know exactly what you want them to do next. One of the ways I help you with that is by providing you with a content planning by page worksheet that asks questions like the following:
- What do you want the reader to do on this page?
- What kind of information is your visitor/future client looking for on this page?
- What tools will you use to provide that info – ie images, text, video, light boxes?
- Where do you want them to go next?
- How will you let clearly them know this? (hint: CTA boxes and buttons )
The purpose of this is to help you start thinking of your website in terms of how you’d like it to flow for your visitors, what they want to know about you and /or your business in the context of the specific page they are on. The content may well morph into something else completely, but as it does, there will be foundation of flow throughout the site.
Your job is to give me content that expresses you, that clearly communicates your message.
My job is to take that content and put it into a framework that communicates the feeling that you are wanting to evoke in your visitors as they peruse your site. My job is also to lay it out in a way that easily guides them to the next step and ultimately leads to conversions – whether that conversion is an email address via optin, an inquiry, and ideally, ultimately, a sale.
We’ll do that using color changes, images, bolding, headings, size, incorporating the type and colors that we have chosen.
The two parts are integrally woven together.
Once it’s all put together, we can use tools to evaluate the content that is drawing in your visitors and track their behavior on the site. IS the content doing what you want it to? ARE the visitors following your guidance to the next logical step? (Link to Lydia?)
And before all that, it is important to create the content and then frame it in ways that evoke the desired action in the visitor.
Remember, your content is courting your ideal clients, the people you most want to work with, the ones you most like working with. Keep it real, keep it in your voice, and treat it as the key part of the design process that is calling your clients to you.
So how do you curate ideas and create content that works?
I’ll cover that here in a future post.