It’s easy to view web content writing as the last stage of your journey; once the design and coding is complete, all that’s left to do is populate your site with words to sell your wares. But there’s substantially more to it than that. Communicating with your customers effectively is the cornerstone of any business, and content can only perform that task well if it’s considered as part of your website design.
To illuminate this, we spoke to Helder Miguel, CEO of Cubic Street, and a client of Rocksalt Copy Creatives. Helder has been working on his website for close to two years from concept to final production, and we asked him to discuss what he found difficult, what he learned, and how we assisted him.
Building a corporate website from scratch
Helder’s first challenge with his website build was to work out the starting point. Building a business website from scratch is no easy feat and generally requires the work of multiple professionals.
Initially, Helder saw content as one of the last pieces of the puzzle, but soon discovered that content would inform the entire design process. Content is not just about words, it is about communication, and a crucial part of that is identifying your audience and crafting your content and design to appeal to it.
Think about content first
This is why content is so important from the start, even if it’s only the roughest outline. By knowing what you want to say and how you want to say it, it’s much easier to tailor the design of your website to getting that message across. This can also help ensure a cohesive narrative for your site. Web writing is about creating a story that takes the reader on a journey of your making, and you don’t want them confused, frustrated or lost, especially without a way back.
Functionality is an important part in creating this journey, but knowing your audience also affects how it’s implemented and how your content describes your site.
Content can also be a useful guide to others working on the site — coders and designers for instance — when they are considering how the site should look and function.
By having a strong idea of what your content will be, what sort of audience it will appeal to, and the general tone of your site, it is much easier to create a focused, compelling site, and ensure that all your hard work will pay off.
How a copywriting agency can help
We worked with Helder on his content, taking what he already had, and then tailoring it to his specifications and his market. At Rocksalt Copy Creatives, we understand the importance of language and its nuance, and how to get the most out of your content.
The small changes we made to the Cubic Street content are part of what we do at Rocksalt. Working from Helder’s existing content, we fine-tuned his message to ensure it would reach his intended audience, deconstructing his language and identifying the key messages that needed to come across.
While it can be tempting to leave content creation until the end of your website design process, it can mean a lot more work later. By having a concrete understanding of your message and how you want it to be delivered, layout and design decisions can be much more focused on reaching your audience. Remember, a website isn’t just a container for information. It’s a valuable marketing tool, and often, the customer’s first point of contact with your business.
The best advice for considering web content
For the future, Helder recommends a 70/30 approach; that is, try and have 70% of your content ready, even if only in draft form, and leave the final 30% until the end — when you can be sure that everything works together. This will not only clarify the vision for your website and establish your tone and target audience early on, but also give everyone working on the site a better idea of where you’re going, which can help immensely with difficult design choices. Having a copywriting agency take care of this content for you is the simplest and most effective option, but Helder also has advice for those on a budget.