Editor’s Note: Nate Eldridge is growth marketing manager at B12, a website builder based in New York City. B12 uses AI to build and maintain web presences for small and midsize businesses in the U.S. and Canada. Here at Verblio, we’re working together as a partner to B12 to make it easier for your website to get the content and copywriting it needs and structurally stays up to date.
Whether you’re building a new website or maintaining one you’ve had in place for years, you likely know that each moving part requires lots of attention—and lots of different sets of skills.
You also know your website needs valuable content—yet deciding what kinds of content to focus on can be tough (and then gets even tougher when you consider everything your marketing needs to accomplish!).
But whatever your goals might be, whether it’s more traffic, more sales, or a better user experience, the B12 team has insight that can help. We’ve put together our list of the 5 most important user-facing content elements any website needs.
Why should you trust us? We’ve been in the website-building business since 2015, and have since then built over 100,000 sites for small businesses all over the U.S. and Canada. All that experience has given us insight into the type of content that businesses rely on day-in and day-out to grow.
And now it’s time for us to share that knowledge:
1. A Regularly Updated Blog
A steady stream of high-quality content that is relevant to your website’s core themes and values will not only help communicate what it is that you and your company do, it will also bolster your SEO (see point #4 for more details). This helps more potential customers discover you online in the mid- to long-term.
To achieve this steady stream of content, you’ll need a few simple things: an editorial calendar, someone to write the content, and someone to assist in getting your content syndicated across the web.
An editorial calendar is a timeline or tool that helps you chart upcoming content pieces. You can also use it to track authorship, topics, or anything else you need—all in order to make sure your content is created and published on time. With this in your repertoire, you just need someone to help you create the content, generate ideas, and publish it on time.
If you find yourself lacking in ability in any (or all) of these areas, or don’t have a dedicated content marketing team to work on them for you, outsource the work to someone who can help. For content writing, we recommend a trusted service such as Verblio.
Your customers are your most important advocates, and your potential customers need—and want—to hear from them (in marketing speak, this is known as social proof).
How do you make that happen? Testimonials.
But how do you really make this happen? There are a few ways.
At B12, we’ve found that one of the most effective strategies is to identify and speak with your current customers. This means reaching out, explaining that you think they’d be a great fit for a testimonial, and then having a 30-or-so minute chat during which you gather their story. You’ll then summarize your conversation and publish the interview on your website.
You now have a customer you can show you’ve worked with, and your customer gets their name featured, improving content and SEO (because who doesn’t search for ‘company name reviews’ before working with a new vendor?) for all involved. It’s a win-win.
Interested to see what this looks like in practice? Read the reviews we’ve published of B12 on our own website.
3. Clear Calls-to-Action
Whether or not a visitor is on a conversion-optimized part of your website, there should be (for the most part) ample choices for them to do something of value for both you AND them.
Keep in mind that the action you want your visitor to take doesn’t have to involve a purchase. It could be logging in to their account, completing a lead generation form, or anything else that brings your business some amount of value.
It might seem simple, but it really is important that the design and copy of a call-to-action are created so that a user knows exactly what to do and feels compelled to do it. For strong, persuasive CTA copy, definitely work with a good website content writer.
4. A Winning SEO Strategy
No matter how well laid out or how much content you’ve written for your website, if you don’t make use of a strong SEO strategy, then nobody will find your website on their own. And what a waste that would be!
So whenever you’re working on copy, always keep your customers’ search terms and keywords in mind.
For example, let’s say you have a dog walking business in Richmond, VA that you’re building a new website for. You wouldn’t want to optimize your website for the keyword “dog walker” as it will be highly competitive, resulting in little traffic. You also won’t want to optimize for that term as it would open you up to getting more traffic from people looking for dog walkers in other cities.
Instead, you’ll want to focus on long tail keywords like “dog walker in Richmond, Virginia available today”. By going after less common search terms, you’ll have a greater chance of ranking on the first page of Google, which greatly increases the click-through rate you can expect. You do this either in the tags of your site or in user-facing copy, and ideally you’ll do it in both.
But don’t just drop these keywords anywhere, as search engines will pick up on keyword stuffing. Rather, build your content around your search terms. Write articles, use strong headings, and just make it look and feel natural.
At B12, we’ll manage SEO for you and get your website found. Search engines are constantly changing their algorithms, business directories are always growing, and metrics are difficult to keep tabs on, giving your SEO to us will free you of the headache of doing it yourself. B12 SEO manages all of this for you, ensuring you’ll stay ahead of the competition. It was our most requested product feature, but we’ll leave the ultimate decision to you.
5. Conversion-Optimized Landing Pages
Getting someone to visit your website is only one step in the conversion journey. Once you have them there, you need them to take the next step.
But what does that next step look like? Is it filling out a lead capture form? Is it making a purchase? Is it something else? Whatever the goal, you need your website to be conversion-optimized so that it will guide a user to complete the desired action.
When we design landing pages for our own marketing campaigns here at B12, we always make sure to include a few key things:
- Ample CTA placement
- Clear, concise messaging
- Easy-to-use lead generation forms
When designing your own site, you should also focus on those key areas and perhaps even a few more. Strong, conversion focused copy along with a design that gets the user to focus in the way you want them will lead you to the results you want to see. You might not get it on the first try, though, so be sure to test new things and adjust over time.
Maintaining a website is tough.
Maintaining it properly is very tough.
So if you just don’t have the resources to do it on your own, you need to find a company (or two) that can do it for you at a low cost.
For new websites we recommend B12, which just so happens to be a platform and a service all bundled into one. We use our own proprietary platform that helps you manage your website and stay competitive. And for copywriting, we absolutely recommend Verblio!
Give both of our services a shot and you’ll have the above 5 foundations of success taken care of in no time!