Web Design Podcast (7) – Content is King

Paul Boag

We have received a lot of request to look at the subject of content management. So, in this weeks podcast we will be looking at why content is important, how to make your content accessible, give some general advice on copywriting and final how to make the most from your content management system.

Download this show.

Below is a brief outline of the things covered in this week’s podcast as well as links to some of the sites mentioned:

Poor quality

Let me just apologise in advance for the poor quality of the audio this week. Due to the last minute death of my motherboard we had to change the audio setup and so things are a little ropey. Back to normal next week (hopefully).

This week’s news

View the new boagworld.com mission statement!
Listen to the Web Essentials 2005 podcast
Try out the new web design podcast at webaxe
Read Jacob Neilsen’s top web design mistakes of 2005
Learn how to use Dreamweaver 8 to create sites built using web standards

Main Feature: All about content

Why is content so important?

  • Because users are not impressed by design anymore
  • Because content is not always shown in the context of your design (Web feeds)
  • Because written content improves search engine rankings
  • Because good content keeps users coming back for more
  • The accessibility of content
  • WAI guidelines insist on accessible content (14.1 Use the clearest and simplest language appropriate for a site’s content.)
  • Learn more about making content accessible.

General advice for web copy

  • Make it personal because computers aren’t
  • Don’t patronize
  • Remember the medium (its hard to read on screen)
  • Avoid marketing talk
  • Avoid jargon
  • Remove happy talk
  • Read more advice on writing effective web copy

Managing content

  • Remember you do not always need a full cms!
  • Establish your needs before looking for a solution
  • Content management systems wont solve your content problems
  • People see updating copy as a unimportant part of their job
  • It is important to have a web editor to bully people into contributing and in order to ensure consistency across the site.
  • Provide training on more than just your CMS. Cover good design and copywriting too.
  • Make sure your training is supported written documentation
  • Invest your money in the people that edit your site NOT the technology.
  • Learn more about managing site content.