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Why Your Website Content Shouldn’t be an Afterthought

When you’re designing (or redesigning) your website, you probably want to incorporate the latest styles in layout and design.  You want prominent placement for your logo, easy-to-find contact information, and discreet, but convenient menus for users to navigate.

You know you want bold graphics that elevate the appearance of your pages, support your brand image, and engage viewers, and you certainly want optimal placement for key messaging, but do you have content, including text, images, and videos?  Or are you waiting until page structuring is complete to fill in the blanks, so to speak?

If you’re building a website with a content-later approach, you’re making a big mistake.  Why is it so important to have an idea of content first?  Why shouldn’t content be an afterthought?

Content Matters

If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a hundred times: content is king.  This phrase is uttered in relation to Google rankings and audience connection with equal frequency, but the reason people say it is because it’s true.  Although the ways in which you choose to present content are important, people don’t come to your website in search of a pretty layout to ogle for hours on end.

They want information.  They want an experience.  They want a way to join your community or buy your products.  The right content draws them in, gives them what they want, and tells them how to accomplish certain goals.  Your content sells you, much more than the layout and design of your pages, and it should be your very first thought when creating a website or specific pages.

Your Content is the Springboard

When you’re coming up with ideas for your website design, the makeup of pages, and so on, you’ll find that having your content ready and waiting can really help you to formulate the perfect layout and design.  It can influence every element of the design process and give you the inspiration to determine the best visual presentation for specific text, graphics, videos, and other page elements.

You naturally want the tone of your visual presentation to match your brand, but also support the tone of the content on the page.  Knowing what that content is from the start can save you a lot of time on changes down the line.  Having your content in place early on can only help to make the design process more effective, efficient, and streamlined.

Content Takes Time

It bears mentioning that you can’t rush content creation – not if you want it to be good.  Many people have an inexplicable dread of content creation, but the truth is, you know your business inside and out, and most people can wax poetic about their passion for hours on end.  If you keep this in mind when you set out to create content, it will not only make the process much easier, but also a lot more fun.

Still, it does take time to create, edit, and perfect your content.  If you set a timetable for designing your website that doesn’t factor in this process, you could get to the end of your design and find yourself crunching to churn out content, compromising the quality in the process.  Quality content is essential to reaching your goals, and you need to take the time to do it right from the beginning.

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