You must have seen functional sites with a beautiful and user-friendly design, the information value of which is close to zero. Here you can find several identical sections with "selling" text, sharpened for different keys, the history of a young and dynamic organization and the section "Useful Information", which has been in development since the creation of the resource. Getting on such sites, users are disappointed and even annoyed. The lack of useful content worsens the user experience. How to solve this problem?
Nobody reads content
So think resource owners, investing in design and contextual advertising. They say, they say, that you can write about plastic windows, metal structures or repair of laptops. It is better to create three sections on the site: "Order of PVC windows", "Order of plastic windows", "Installation of plastic windows". And drive traffic with contextual advertising.
This approach is formed due to incorrect definition of content. Do you think content is a huge article written by academics and geeks? Do you think that industry resources are the best place for such materials, since your visitors have no time to read them? In fact, almost everything you see on your site can be called content:
- Descriptions in the sections of the site. Your potential customers do not read them because of the location at the bottom of the page, the lack of useful information, the key stuffing. Yes, even your customers are angry when they see on the site two similar sections within the meaning, for example, "Website Promotion" and "Website Promotion".
- Product Descriptions. Visitors do not read them only in one case: when they are not on the site.
- Photo. Yes, customers do not read them. They watch them. In addition, they watch videos, presentations and infographics.
- Text and photo in the section "About the company". Speak, do not read? Who is interested in reading another stamped text about a high-tech and hyperdynamic team of professionals, sharpened turnkey "turnkey quality windows"?
- Blog articles. Perhaps your authors do not have academic degrees or a world name. But if they share useful information with the audience, people read this content.
See also: 3 questions about usability that you need to ask yourself
Content is not a feed for search robots, not a visual filler for web pages and not a technical link for the conversion of paid traffic. The content of your site provides the user with the experience of interacting with your business. When you understand this, attitudes towards content change. You get the opportunity to use the content to influence the user experience.
First, you start making quality content. Secondly, you integrate the content of the site, which increases its information efficiency. Third, you optimize the content for the user's needs.
How to integrate content
You can integrate content using relevant relink. Use the links inside the text, the blocks "Best articles", "You may also be interested in" and other linking tools. Put internal links in the interest of live site visitors. In this case, you simultaneously take care of search engines.
Use the main principle of integration: link selling and informational materials. Selling in this case means product descriptions and advertising texts. The following guidelines will help you integrate content into practice:
- In the product description, put a link to a thematic article in the blog. For example, describing the specifications of a laptop, refer the user to the material "What processor is needed by a modern user."
- Embed relevant social content. You can refer to text notes or visual content. The simplest example is the YouTube video embedded on the page. This is not internal linking, but you are sending users to your own account on the social network.
- Link to relevant social content from product description pages. For example, a resource for booking hotels top10.com embeds photos published on Instagram on the page describing the relevant hotels.
You can also link to products and selling content from the information pages, use the "With this product are buying" blocks, publish announcements of new products and information materials in social networks.
The point of linking is as follows: once on your website, the visitor finds himself in the information-transactional space. It should not be closed, but the user should stay here as long as possible. This can be compared with the arrangement of furniture in the sales area: the space in the stores is often organized so that you can get from the entrance to the exit if you have walked around the entire hall.
See also: Usability for Dummies. Part 4: How to make content readable
How to optimize content
The end of 2014 is in the yard, and keyword stuffing is still working. Pay attention to the issue of Google:
The first position in the issue is a link to the category page of a large online store. At the top of the page is the content that the user is looking for: categories and manufacturers of laptops. And at the bottom of the page there is a text:
It is clear that most users will not even see this text. It is clear that a person does not need text on the product category page. If he enters the "Laptops" section, he understands without text that he can "choose and buy a laptop on the Internet with delivery" here.
Speak, this text is needed for search engines? First, like real people, search engines will determine the relevance of the category category to the "laptop" category without text in a pagewoman. Enough text at the top of the page. Secondly, because of keyword stuffing, the page risks falling under sanctions. Thirdly, visitors, who still get to the text in a footcloth, can be upset. Agree to read old-school SEO texts is unpleasant and even fraught with language fractures.
Content needs to be optimized for the needs of live users. How to do it? Use the following guidelines:
- Write texts for people. Even if it is text for a category page that no one ever reads. Use keys for search engine optimization, but avoid explicit keyword stuffing.
- Make the content visible. Check out the product description page on the Svyaznoy and Juicy Couture stores website.
On the page describing the dress there is a text, although without it you can see that the dress is good. But on the page describing the system unit there is only a photo of this product. And to get to the description, you have to scroll. Juicy Couture shop can sell a dress without text: there are enough photos. To improve the user experience, Svyaznoy can take an example from colleagues and place a text description of the system at the top of the page.
- Avoid negative user experience practices. These include:
- Aggressively pushing on products or information, including annoying ads.
- Hard requirements to make any action.
- Redirect users to other sites for information or action.
- The focus is on the properties of the product, not the benefits of the client.
- Publish template content.
With the help of content, you communicate with potential and existing customers, shape their views and needs, satisfy informational requests. Keep this in mind when creating a content plan and creating materials.
See also: How to improve the website with SEO and usability: 4 mini-cases
Think about visitors
Optimizing user experience with content has nothing to do with technical disciplines. To improve the experience of a site visitor, you should think about its interests: to satisfy information needs, to care about the effectiveness of content, to combine sales and informational materials. The visitor should come to your site for the sake of content, the value of which is emphasized by high-quality design and usability.