Getting the Balance Right When Adding Content

September 15, 2013

When I’m advising clients on how to improve their website, normally I have to push really, really hard to encourage them to update the website regularly with new content. Blogging is obviously an easy way to do this but there are others ways. e.g. an e-commerce shop might add customer reviews, extended descriptions etc on a regular basis. Sometimes I’ll recommend adding a news page as an alternative way of saying “go write a blog”.

The thing is, normally when I recommend a path like that, the good intention is there but the site doesn’t get updated that often. As a result most sites do OK in search engines but are never firing on all cylinders.

What happens when the plan goes the other way? What when you start writing screeds and screeds of content, or worse yet, cut’n'pasting thousands of pages of old Powerpoint presentations, proposals, case studies, technical documents etc?

Does your customer really need or want it? Sure search engines will lap it up and it will probably bring more one-time visitors into your site, but do you really want to be feeding all this stuff into your loyal readers RSS feed or email newsletter?

So how do you get it right?

If you are planning on adding tons of less-than interesting content, do it in a way that places it in an archive or knowledge base. Try not to throw it down the throats of your repeat visitors or readers. Keep it out of the RSS feed and don’t tell people in your newsletter that you’ve just uploaded a technical document from 2001.

Or better yet, why not pick and choose the best of the content and leave the rest out? The stuff that you do put in could be introduced in such a way that it lets your reader know the relevance of putting it in now.

Do it that way and introduce it to your readers in the right way and they might just end up lapping it up. If you simply deluge people with crap they will unsubscribe. If you’re serious about adding content there’s definitely a balance that has to be achieved. Get it right and you’ll reap the rewards of loads of visitors from search engines AND loads of repeat visitors.

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