Your website’s content is what its all about, useless, rambilng, uninformative content = useless site no matter how pretty it might be. Of course the content is left until last most of the time as both designers and clients fuss over colors, images, flash and whatever else but content should really come first.
Web designers love to be given a job where the page content has already been lovingly written and thought about but it happens rarely! Then all the designer has to do is decide how much to put in or leave out. Having the content sorted before the site building begins allows a designer to know the following:
- What the site is about!
- What the theme and tone of the site is likely to be.
- What the best colors should be, dependent on the theme above.
- What pages to generate from the content.
Basically everything else falls into place once all content is written so its handy for a designer to know all this in advance as he plans out the site.
But what about coming up with content in the first place?
Obviously it depends on what your business is. If you are a not for profit, informational kind of organization then lots of text is unavoidable and conversely if you are a taxi firm then your phone number is all you might need! Either way the golden rule is to write as concisely, efficiently and informatively as possible. The best way to do this I believe is to write a few drafts first.
First draft will include all you can possibly think of related to your subject. Second draft will be rewriting the first draft and cutting out obviously unnecessary bits or repetitive sections. Third draft might clean up the english a little and make the sentences a little shorter and snappier. Final draft might involve layout and keywording for the web which means breaking the text up into paragraphs, bulleted lists, formatting with bold & itallics etc.. Keywording means deciding what your most important keywords are in relation to what your business is about and what people might type into a search engine to find your site and then fitting these keywords in regularly into what you have written.
My best advice is to put yourself in the mind of the visitor to your site and try to imagine how they will react to your content and how interesting and easy to read they will find it.