Developing Ideas for Website Content
What is content planning?
Having already explored how your website supports your SEO Strategy using the AIDA model and how similarly the AIDA model is used to support the creation of blogs, you’ll understand the importance of knowing where your customer is in their decision-making process and being able to communicate with them through different marketing communication tools.
Looking specifically at your website, this is the hub of any online marketing campaign. Without properly considering your audiences decision-making process, the problems they’re looking for you to solve better than your competition and how to communicate with them, on an emotional and rational level, it’s very difficult to create online campaigns that will convert customers and generate you more leads and sales.
Why do I need to plan website content?
Like any marketing campaign you produce, the success of it hinges on your understanding of your audience during the research stage. Carrying out market research, which can be easily achieved through spending time in-store with your target audience who purchase your product or if you’re in a service based business, out on the road with your sales staff will allow you to understand:
- Your customers gender.
- Their age.
- Why they purchase this type of product/ service.
- Why they purchase from you and not the competition.
- Multiple reasons they purchase your product/ service, in addition to their immediate want/ needs.
- Where they spend their time.
- Most importantly, what their emotional reasons behind purchasing are.
Understanding the answers to these questions will allow you to build a website that communicates with all the emotional needs of your customer, in addition to the rational ones.
What benefits will my business see from planning website content?
You’ll notice a lot of websites on the internet and no doubt, many of your competitors carry similar USP’s (unique selling points), which can be very rationally based around:
- Offers and sales.
- High levels of service and expertise offered.
- 20 years’ experience in the industry.
Whilst it’s important to have these rational based selling points, they don’t provide anything different or give the customer a reason to choose your business over a competitor who’s showcasing similar USP’s.
Think about the last company that communicated with you, what stages did you go through before making the purchase? Did you see the product and purchase it? Maybe but more likely, you considered what you needed from the product/ service/ company before researching further and then making some more rational decisions. If a company doesn’t offer solutions to the more emotional based decisions, it’s very difficult to move them closer to more rational based decisions and making a purchase.
What are emotional based decisions? Considering a chocolate brand, when you’re hungry and deserve a treat you’ll consider the following rational based decisions:
- Am I going to choose a white or milk chocolate bar? Maybe even dark
- How much chocolate do I want?
- How much do I want to spend?
The following emotional based decisions will also be considered, maybe even subconsciously:
- What branding resonates with me; do I fancy a purple bar (Dairy Milk) or a black bar (Mars)?
- What voice is talking to me; Cadbury’s ‘There’s a glass & a half in everyone’ or KitKat’s ‘Have a break, have a KitKat?’
- What brand values do the companies considered adopt? How are they contributing to society? Cadbury are owned by Kraft, who are American and have changed the original recipe.
How do I create website content?
Once you have successfully conducted your research and identified some of the deeper emotional problems your customers are looking for solutions to, you can begin considering how you will communicate them across your website.
Consider an online retailer that sells cushions and pillows, we will consider first the rational and emotional decisions potential customers will make when considering their purchase. We will then look at how to influence these at different stages of the AIDA model, using their website.
Rational based decisions
- The design of the cushion/ pillow and if it’s coordinated with the room.
- Needing a replacement due to the old one being worn.
- The price.
- What reviews has the cushion/ pillow received?
Emotional based decisions
- How soft are they and what support do they offer?
- How easy are they to keep clean?
- The reputation of the manufacturer.
Understanding the customers rational and emotional based decisions, these can be plotted across the AIDA model to influence purchasing behaviour.
At this stage of the decision-making process your potential customer doesn’t know about your product, so how can your website grab their attention?
Through looking at the rational based decisions we know initially potential customers will need a new cushion because their existing one’s worn out. Therefore they’re looking at options, without considering much more detail beyond colour, style and price. To grab their attention, it’s essential the retailer provides a range of designs and price points to capture both conservative and more outgoing consumers, as well as people who are more and less affluent.
Once the potential customers’ awareness has been captured, it’s important we begin to increase their interest.
Once a potential customer is aware there is a range on offer, from a number of retailers, they will begin to consider what they need from a cushion, considering the more pertinent points around comfort and ease of looking after them.
This is when the website will need to be able to showcase the different levels of comfort they offer, through explaining what they’re made from, what the materials offer and show people using the cushions. In addition there can be some cleaning instructions offered to customers, to show they’re easy to maintain. These deeper benefits will begin to move them close to the desire stage and taking action.
To continue to communicate effectively with it’s audience and differentiate from the competition, it’s important the website continues to demonstrate solutions to deeper emotional decisions, such as:
- The reputation of the manufacturer. Is it a recognised, reliable brand?
- Having an aspirational home to show off to friends.
- Offering a comfy place for friends and family to relax in.
- What different colours say about the person purchasing them.
- Providing different pillows for different seasons.
- Benefits/ breakdown of different fabrics.
At this point, they may be looking for reassurance they’re making the correct decision which could be achieved through reviews of the cushion/ pillow, a rational based decision.
To encourage a conversion, it’s important the website provides the potential customer one more reason for purchasing the cushion, versus purchasing it from a competitor. This can be achieved through a promotion or loyalty scheme.
If your websites’ correctly navigated the customer all the way from awareness, through the interest, desire and action stages you will have successfully converted the customer.
If you’ve taken your customers all the way from awareness, through to interest and desire but they haven’t converted, what can you do? A lot of the time your potential customers will visit your site more than once before making a decision. How do you ensure you stay front of mind when people will often view multiple options before making a decision? Easy, this is where remarketing can help.
Using either Facebook or Google, you can create an advert linking through to the product or service page your customer visited previously, to ensure you’re in their minds whilst they’re continuing to make a decision.
If you would like us to begin planning your website content using the AIDA model, along with producing recommendations to improve your conversion rate free of charge, get in touch here.
What else do I need to know?
Your website is the cornerstone of any successful marketing campaign, online or offline. Every type of lead generation tool, whether it’s SEO, PPC or any of the Paid Social Media channels can attract customers to your site with the view of reading content that will resonate with them. The more you can appeal to their needs and use marketing tools successfully in collaboration with each other, the more likely you are to convert.
“Of all of our inventions for mass communication, pictures still speak the most universally understood language.”