Our adventures in content and website optimization continued this week thanks to both a handful of gracious experts and our own CMSWire staff writers.
- 4 Pillars for Web Content Management Site & Content Optimization. These days there seems to be as many Web Content Management (WCM) systems as there are programming languages. From Open Source systems to blogging platforms to wiki systems to big vendor Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and portal systems, we are swimming in WCM options. But whatever system you are using or considering there are some key strategies for optimizing your site and content that can spell the difference between a site that successfully drives desired behavior and one that simply exists on the web.
- Optimize Your Customer Experience First...Then Your Content!. Today, companies need to focus on the 360 degree relationship and interaction they have with customers in all forms of media. It is not enough to just ensure your content is search engine optimized or enhanced for analytics. It’s not enough that your site navigation is simple enough for the average person to find what they're looking for, or you have a Facebook page or “like” buttons on your site. It’s not about “web experience management” or “web engagement management” that you hear some WCMS vendors talk about. It’s about the customer experience.
- Your Website Has an Expiration Date: The Multi-Touchpoint World has Made Context King. The Website as We Know It is Expiring. Organizations are realizing that they need to look beyond the traditional website to provide visitors and customers with consistent and engaging experiences across a variety of touchpoints, such as social networks, mobile phones and traditional laptops and computers. Consistency is not enough in today’s always connected world, however; consumers expect a high degree of personalization when they interact with brands online. As such, your content management strategy must evolve. Communications must be contextualized to take into account individual visitor context such as end device, historical preferences, physical location and time of day.
- The Super Page - Making Websites Persuasive with Content Density. Conventional wisdom says web content should be concise. However, blind application of this rule is a mistake — there are good cases for lengthy, dense web content.
- Content Strategy: Five Traits to Look for When Hiring a Content Strategist. With all the chatter in the blogosphere and the popularity of the content strategy Twitter stream, it's obvious that Content Strategy for the Web is here to stay. You've read all the articles and you're convinced: your organization needs a content strategist to evaluate and plan for your content. So, what are the traits necessary for a great content strategist?
- Web Optimization: Web Management Requires Minimalism. The most important decisions in web management are what you don't do, what you take away from your website rather than put up on it.
- Swimming Through Sentiment Analysis with Lexalytics. Everyone has the right to their own opinion, but add the web in the mix and it's not uncommon for companies to find themselves buried under a hill of negative sentiment. Enter Lexalytics, a company that helps keep track of what's being said and how it's being said.
There is no doubt that the Web has become profoundly important for organizations — to not only engage with their customers online, but also drive their business more effectively. Herein lies the double challenge: as customers choose an ever broader variety of devices and social networks to interact with companies, companies must in turn integrate a growing IT-ecosystem to connect their business to each of these touchpoints if they want to reach their customers. For years, the integration and interaction touchpoint was the corporate website: organizations focused on mashing-up their services and information on this single point of entry, and consumers rewarded them with coming to their site. As a result, a lot of business intelligence and integration effort has been invested into the assembly of Web pages.
Web writers have been trained to write punchy value propositions and short copy. From a design and information architecture perspective the goal is to preserve the "white space." Inline tabs that divide pages into bite size chunks are in vogue as is site architecture that divides content into many thematically organized sections and sub-sections. If you look at the "experts" on persuasion, traditional advertising and marketing agencies, their own websites are often high-style / low-content Flash websites bent to maximize brand.
So the best way to create persuasive web content is to follow the lead from the agencies and web copy writing experts, right? Wrong. When it comes to your website there may be value in short copy; but it may not be the most persuasive content for your visitors. In fact, conventional wisdom may be flat out wrong.