Content is Key, Transitioning to a New Site
Nov 12, 2016
Often, we have clients come to us for a new website, and it can easily be overlooked how critical the content of the site is. A great social media campaign or stellar design is great, but quality content reigns supreme. To give a better idea of how we help our clients get the best content possible on their sites, we’re going to walk through our content creation/migration process from the initial concept to putting everything on the site.
Part One: Discovering the Goal of a New Site
From the beginning, we work to uncover the base motivation for the new site. The questions we must answer are: A year from its launch, what is the site doing for their business? What is the value that it provides?
- Typically this is in some form of the following:
- Increasing sales and conversion
- Educating customers
- Solidifying the client as the industry leader
Maybe the site has accomplished one of the items above or something entirely different. However the site may serve your needs, our goal is to determine exactly the “what” so we can appropriately layout the “how”. By taking time to understand what the site needs to do, the end result more successfully fulfills its purpose and the client’s vision.
Part Two: What Content Will Help the Site Reach Its Goal?
In order to have the best site for your needs, all of the content inside has to serve a specific purpose. This means that there is no “fluff”, and extraneous content must be removed.
First, we have to take inventory of what’s inside. There are two ways we can approach this.
The most comprehensive, although time intensive, is visiting each page, clicking on every link, and sorting through all the content. The other less thorough approach is using a service like Google Analytics that automates the process. By using the best method or a combination of these methods for your site, we’re able to take the information and find trends in the content to use going forward in improving the site.
What was learned from evaluating existing content is used to make decisions about what to keep for the new site. All of the content that is kept must serve the central purpose of the new site. For example, existing content can serve the purpose of educating visitors to the site or result in increased sales if those are the goals the client has in mind.
No matter what goal your site is striving toward, everything kept from the current site must fit the vision of the new site. Nothing is kept without a reason, and often, content must be created to fill gaps that this process reveals. This results in a new site that much more successfully reaches your audience, communicates your vision, and achieves the goals you have in mind.
Part Three: Migrating Content to the New Site
Now comes the time to audit all the material. A mistake can be made during this phase by simply copying existing content and pasting it into the new site. The current site was designed with its own unique goal, and the content was written to match. This means that the existing content won’t necessarily fit with the vision of the new site, but it may cover a subject that needs to be included. If this is the case, we rewrite it!
Our goal during this phase is not necessarily to reduce the quantity of content (although that usually happens), but to ensure that everything included in your site works towards the common goals that were discovered earlier.
With the new vision, goals, and audience in mind, new content is created that supports and enhances what we chose to keep from the previous site. This results in a coherent and effective message purveyed throughout all content on the site.
Part Four: Engaging Your Audience With Your Content
Depending on the size of the site and the involvement of the client, the audit may become a more involved process. Everyone’s input is crucial during this phase, and we work with you to assure your site serves its purpose and fits your vision. Efficiency greatly improves, so not only does the new site suit your needs perfectly, but it is completed in a timely manner.
By determining what a new site can do for you and your vision, you set yourself up for a site that accomplishes your goals much more successfully than before. The value of this new site is determined by how well the content matches this vision and helps to accomplish the specific goals you have in mind.
With the process of evaluating existing content and migrating only the most effective for your needs, moving to a new site becomes a valuable and meaningful transition. The conjunction of existing and new content strengthens the site and and the expression of its vision.
Although the process can seem daunting, the transition to a new site provides newfound purpose and value that otherwise would be undiscovered. Many aspects come together for a site to be successful, but in order to most effectively strive toward the goals for a site, maintaining quality content is key.