Your website content is more than just words

When you think of developing content for your website you're probably thinking of site architecture and copy writing. Those two pieces do build the majority of your website but you're doing yourself and your audience a disservice if you stop there.

Website content - words, components, graphics

Good website content integrates far more than words. Good website content includes photos, videos, illustrations, visual calls to action, form fields, and supporting downloadables. Make sure you're leveraging your website with the best content by asking these key questions during development.

How are you incorporating photography and video?

The Internet is a visual medium. The design elements of your website will certainly convey that but your visual communication shouldn't stop there. Carefully consider how and where you're placing photos and videos and then consider if you need custom photography or stock or a mixture of the two. Videos can tell a story far more effectively than a few paragraphs. Photos can show the people you serve and elicit emotions in your audience that make them want to help. Video loops attract the eye and incite someone to click into a section they may not have otherwise noticed. Photos can break up long sections of content while supporting their message. Videos and photography go a long way to conveying your message and engaging your audience. They deserve more than a few minutes of thought.

Video herographic example

Have you considered custom illustrations?

Do you have a complex process that is difficult to explain with words? An infographic combines visuals and words to communicate more clearly.

Do you want to convey a lengthy corporate history without taking up too much of the page? Consider a graphic timeline with interactive pop-ups for content.

Do you offer a service that can't be photographed? Custom icons can balance out your descriptions and convey what you have to offer.

Custom illustration work truly enhances the way your website communicates with your audience. If you have something to communicate that you think is confusing or cumbersome, talk to your designer about using custom illustrations. Often these illustrations can be used in offline marketing materials as well promoting consistency in your message and giving you more bang for the buck.
Custom infographic example

Are your calls to action creative?

Text links are great tools to link related types of content across your site. However, outside of a paragraph of info, they aren't terribly compelling for the user. Instead of simple text links, you should consider visual calls to action. Banners, boxes, buttons, stylized text, or even icons that direct the eye to the message all create calls to action that are more noticeable and more likely to be clicked. You can incorporate a simple call to action with a video or photo. You can even add short forms as the call to action. With so many possibilities, you should definitely take a few minutes to come up with your desired calls to action and then talk to your website designer about the best way to communicate them.
Learn more about creative calls to action with this HubSpot article:
31 Call-to-Action Examples You Can't Help but Click

How are your forms working for you?

Step outside the traditional Contact Us box. Where should you place forms on the site? What do those forms need to collect? What is required vs 'nice-to-have'? Forms are very strong tools for lead generation. As such, they should be considered as part of your overall website content - not as an after-thought.
Landing page form example

How can you leverage the website with downloadable content?

From the simple offering of a link to a PDF with your product specs. To the more complex four-page brochure that helps to answer common customer issues. Downloadable content takes your website content one step further. Downloadables support your message and help with lead generation. Some content should be available to anyone but you should also place some content behind a creative call to action that gathers info from a prospect before allowing the download.
Learn more about lead-generating downloadable content in our article:
Generate leads on your website with content offers

Don't stop asking these questions once the site is launched.

Constantly reviewing and expanding your website content is one way to keep it up-to-date and useful for your clients and prospects. The questions above certainly apply during the website design process but they apply long after as well. When you review your site analytics, pay close attention to what pages and content elements are working well for you. Set aside time to read through your own website once a quarter and ask yourself if there are areas where you could expand or if you have new business initiatives that should be included. And don't forget to add content that can ultimately work for you as a lead generation tool.

Good website content is certainly about far more than words. Make sure your website is taking advantage of it.

TBH Creative: Where content and design work hand-in-hand

When we start a website design project we begin by laying out a site architecture and content plan that meets a company's business goals. We then create a design that works with and leverages that content. We understand that your website is a marketing tool and we build it that way. Ready to build a business-focused website? Contact us to discuss your goals and needs.
Barb

About the author | Barb Ruess

Barb was a project manager and content editor at TBH Creative from 2006-2017. She used her skills to manage development projects, organize websites, and create and edit content. She blogged about content writing, search engine optimization, and offer tips for a successful website project.

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