Question: What’s the most valuable part of your website?
If you answered high-quality content, you were right.
While a visually-pleasing website will draw visitors in, it’s the engaging, fascinating content that will keep them there. Content is more than blog posts; it’s a mixture of audio, graphic, video, and written information that represents your brand, informs of your offerings, and communicates with your visitors. High-quality content also increases the chances of prospects finding your website by improving the platform’s discoverability on the Internet’s search engines. Generic articles that don’t deliver value to visitors tend to rank lower on Google. They also run the risk of a high bounce rate with few returning website visitors. Neil Patel explains more about bounce rates and how to analyze them in his excellent article on Neil Patel Digital.
The Value of High-Quality Content
What’s deemed as high-quality content is subjective, but most will agree it is impeccably-written and well-researched information that cites sources and uses the most up-to-date facts available. It should perfectly capture your brand’s voice and provide prospects with the information they are looking for. Done well, content will drive a high volume of your target audience to your site.
Content should inform, delight, and persuade prospects to purchase the goods or services your company offers. Without content, you’re missing out on important sales opportunities. Research at intechnic.com shows that 52% of consumers say that blogs have impacted past purchase decisions while 42% of consumers use blogs and articles to help them make decisions about purchases. It’s not just B2C consumers that benefit from content. In fact, 60% of business decision-makers (B2B consumers) believe branded content helps them make better product decisions.
Content Planning Framework
To help build your content on your website, it’s good to start by knowing what kind of information your site will need. A useful framework for understanding what content you should be producing is the content marketing sales funnel. This process takes your website visitors on a step-by-step journey that converts them from a prospect to a loyal customer. It makes up part of your overall content strategy which defines how you manage the information on your site. For further reading on marketing planning, Hubspot provides a detailed breakdown of everything you need to know about content strategy.
The content marketing sales funnel is made up of four stages:
This is the ‘ideal’ process; the reality has several more loops, yet it’s still a good model to use to structure your content creation. Potential customers will require different information at each stage of the process. It’s your job to fill your site with valuable content for every step.
At the Awareness stage, the prospect isn’t looking to buy. Instead, they are searching for a solution to a problem or need they have. This is the stage where you make this prospect aware of your company and your industry expertise. You will want to provide blog posts between 500 and 1,500 words which can be your own content or provided by contributors, such as guest posts from other expert sites or from professional writers. You can also provide downloadable white papers, e-books, and webinars which visitors can access after signing up for free. Each blog post should talk about a specific problem and the solutions to that issue without actually mentioning your product or services just yet. To build content for the awareness stage, think about pain points your customers have and design titles centered on those problems. For tips on blogging, you may want to check out our article about the most common blogging mistakes and how to avoid them.
In the Interest stage, the prospect likes your company but isn’t ready to buy yet. You want to continue to inform them by adding educational content that relates directly to your products and how it can help them. The type of content you may want to include is product webinars, demo videos, case studies, and in-depth blog posts about how your product addresses their problems. Now is the time to talk about your products and showcase how perfectly apt they are to help your prospects.
In the Desire stage, the prospect is now ready to buy but is still perhaps undecided from where. This is the moment where you need content that encourages the prospect to contact you. This can include content such as product demonstrations, trial offers, proposals, and tailor-made emails. You could also develop custom-made emails to send those who signed up at the Awareness stage. According to epsilon.com, 80% of those surveyed are more likely to purchase from a company offering personalized experiences, such as emails and other content.
Finally, at the Action stage, the prospect wants to buy your goods and this is the moment where you need to support their decision, both before and after the sale. The content you will include is welcome emails, guidelines, implementation documents, and thank-you notes. This content should be highly personalized and can also take the form of blog posts, such as case studies of customers who use your product or service and can show how it has helped them. Later, you can request a testimonial from them to add to your customer reviews content on your site
Once you’ve decided on the types of content your site needs, the next step is to decide where to get content from, what topics to write about, and how often you should post.
While you should typically post on your social media pages daily, you don’t need to post every day on your website. Research from Hubspot says that companies that produce 16 posts or more every month had four times as much traffic as those that post four times or less. This means posting content once every two days is sufficient. That may still seem like a lot, but there are some ways to lessen the time burden.
One great tip is that you don’t always need to produce brand new content. In fact, you can recycle a lot of old content into different styles. For example, a blog post about SEO or keyword analytics can also be turned into a video, an infographic, and a podcast. This will help you reach a wider audience and saves the time of thinking up new ideas. If you don’t have time to produce your own content, then you can ask for guest posts from experts relating to your industry who may be willing to contribute in exchange for a link to their professional pages.
You can also invest in a professional writer who can produce high-quality content, which saves you time to manage the rest of your business. You can either give the writer the titles you want or they can pitch you different topics. To measure the return on investment, use your site’s statistics such as the volume of traffic and conversion rates to see how many sales and how much interest your content is generating. You can hire a writer with experience in SEO, which will help boost your site’s visibility. For more information on SEO, we suggest our guide to the importance of SEO for your website.
If you’re struggling to think of content titles, you can use tools such as the Hubspot blog ideas generator that will produce a list of possible titles based on your keyword input. You can also brainstorm topics that relate to your industry, problems your prospects may have that you can help with, and the advantages of your products as further ideas for content.
Uploading content every two days sounds time-consuming, yet it doesn’t have to be. You can actually mass-load content onto your site and schedule future publishing dates so they automatically self-publish on the day you want. You can do this weeks in advance so you have a steady stream of content programmed to publish over a period of time. You can do the same for your social media with social media scheduling tools, which helps save time and gets more content out there to your audience. Here are some of Sprout Social’s favorites for 2018.
Content is not only vitally important, but it’s also exciting to produce – after all, it’s the true mouthpiece of your brand and your company. At Komaya, we empower businesses with knowledge and support, allowing them to achieve all their online marketing goals. If you have any questions or thoughts, feel free to reach out to us. We’d love to hear from you.