What you say and show on your website matters more than your site design. Start there!

When small business owners approach me with the idea of redoing their corporate website, I advise them what I’m about to tell you. What you say and show on your website is the real differentiator, not your site design. Start there! Then, you’ll know which website design and features are necessary to present your content.

Aim for content that

  • Quickly answer your audience’s questions;
  • Communicate from their viewpoint;
  • Make them feel at home;
  • Speak to their aspirations.

My advice is to invest in a content strategy that speaks to your targeted audience. First brainstorm answers to these key questions:

  1. What’s the main business goal behind that website?
  2. Who is the targeted audience? You’ll notice that there is no s at audience. Select one!
  3. Why does your audience visit your website? What does your audience want to know? What are they trying to accomplish?
  4. At what moment does your audience visit your website? On which device?
  5. Which actions do you want your audience to do? In which priority order? Limit the site to 2-3 actions in priority order.
  6. What does your audience need to know or experience before taking these actions?
  7. How do you plan to keep the content fresh and relevant for your audience?

What your audience wants and needs to know will grow and evolve over time. Plan ahead for being able to easily publish new content, to test messaging and to highlight the most appropriate content to reach a specific goal.

People buy your mission and how you do it before they buy what you do.

I usually start with the why, continue with the how and finish with the what. When you brainstorm for content, keep in mind why customers do business with you and how you answer their aspirations. Gather stories that show why and how you make the life of your customers simpler, better, healthier, smarter or happier. Give them a taste of what their life would be if they do business with you.

Gather stories that show how your business innovate whether it’s in product development or in the way you do business. Gather stories that bring people behind the scenes. Introduce them to your inspiring team—the employees who imagine, research, build, and care for your products. Finally, explain what you do. People buy your mission and how you do it before they buy what you do.

One last thing… Your corporate website might be the home base of your digital presence but you need to tell the same brand story on social platforms. Ensure your tone and personality are consistent across all platforms.

Photo credits: Death To The Stock Photo