Forget about losing weight or learning a new skill for your New Year’s resolution. Well, maybe not forget about those, but we’ve got a New Year’s resolution that’s perfect for your website — plan out your content for the new year!
It’s a brand new year and if you’re anything like most businesses, you’ve running into the new year with a shiny new budget ready to do all sort of fun things, none of which probably include updating the content on your website, or at least, not directly. It’s probably safe to say though that increasing your web traffic is one of the things you’d like to do for 2018. As we’ve outlined before, one of the best things you can do to help improve traffic to your site is improving your content and making sure you have relevant and interesting content.
In a lot of ways doing content development is a lot like trying to save money or lose weight. We all know how to do these things, but for one reason or another we tend to “fall off the wagon” because they’re not fun, they’re tough, and once you stop doing them it’s hard to start again. When generating content, the biggest issues tend to come down to dealing with the blank page, and having other (usually paid) projects coming to the top of the priority list. A great way to combat this is by coming up with a content calendar for your website.
Our website is no different than a lot of them out there, we go through stretches where we regularly add content, and stretches where we just can’t seem to make the time to write something, so we created a content calendar for ourselves. First, we created a task list for ourselves in the same project management system we put our paid projects in. This way, it’s much harder to ignore these past due tasks we set our selves. Next, we came up with a manageable time to plan our projects for. It’s way to easy to get overwhelmed trying to come up with an entire year’s worth of content, and it’ll probably change by then anyways. Instead, we decided to start with the first 3 months of 2018 and start there with our content.
Next we come to the blank page part of the problem — what do you start writing about? The best place to start is think about why your website exists. Are you selling products or digital goods? Are you promoting your services? Figure out the key words and phrases on why someone might be browsing your site. Start with these when writing your content. Don’t get hung up on the details of these posts off the bat, just try to come up with some topics or titles. Maybe something in the industry has changed that you have an opinion on. Maybe there’s something seasonal or related to the time of year (that’s how this post started). Go back to that task list and start adding these topics as tasks and make sure they have due dates. Try at a minimum to have a content related task a week on your calendar.
Now while this has been pretty focused on generating new content for your site, it can be just as helpful to re-work old or existing content. Maybe it’s out of date, or it’s not saying enough, or it needs to be refocused. Whatever the reason, if it’s existing content that needs to be updated, put it on the calendar and give it a due date, treat it like a paid task you need to complete. Even updating existing content can have solid results. As an example, we changed our Content Editing page of our site to better reflect some of the new directions we’re going, and within just a couple days one of the phrases we try to rank high on in Google jumped over 40 places!
That’s a good sign you need to talk with us.