Keep Your Content Structure User Friendly

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Content structure refers to the overall hierarchy of your content as well as how each article is structured.

Keep in mind that the call to action (CTA) needs to be suitable for the audience.

So for example, if you are writing an introductory article for people at the top of the funnel, a hard-sell CTA will not be appropriate. A better option would be to use a CTA linking to more information or requesting an email subscription.

Ask yourself (and your reader/customer) these two questions:

What are the 2–3 things your people are going to want to do/ learn/ find when they land on your site?

What are the 2–3 things YOU want them to do/ learn/ find when they land on your site?

Content structure can also vary based on article type. For example, Shopify offers 4 different free templates for e-commerce blog posts.

Product review articles should also be structured differently. A typical review might follow this outline:

Introduction and overall ranking

Product description and features

Who is the product suitable for

Pricing and purchase options

Pros

Cons

Alternative products

Final opinion/ recommendation

Since most visitors will scan through your content using headings, subheadings and sufficient white space also helps.

Other factors to consider to maximize readability for your audience include:

Font size & type — Choose an easy to read font such as Verdana, with a size of 16 pixels for body content.

The contrast between background and text colors — Keep it simple, such as black font on a white background.

Focus on keeping your paragraphs and sentences short.

Try to use numbered and bulleted lists.

The general consensus is that longer content performs better. This makes sense when you consider the goal is to provide valuable information that is not too thin. However, the exact ideal content length varies depending on which study you read.

Here is a summary of character sizes provided by Contentmart:

Content is king! It probably doesn’t take much convincing from my side to tell you that your content is the most valuable asset of your website. Be it that you offer information, services, or products, your content is the reason you have a website at all. People visit your website because they are looking for something and it should be your main goal to help them find it.

Certainly, the most logical starting point is to define a clear information structure for your content. Now what is clear? An abstract mind and some experience with content organization will help you to define a first draft version. However, no matter how smart you are, or how much experience you have, don’t think the final structure is something you can do on your own.

At the end of the day, it’s the future user, who has to decide which content is relevant and which is not. More even, it’s about which content is relevant at what point during their visit. To find out how people are going to use your site, there is nothing more logical than just to ask them.

Once you have a clear structure for your content, you need to go into more detail and decide on where to display that content on your site. Important is that you start with the most critical content. What are the core questions people have when visiting your site? Try to answer these, or at least offer a clear starting point right on the landing page. Then, you can think about less central content and decide where, or maybe even more important how to arrange it on your site.

While it is important to focus on what’s relevant and to leave out redundant, or distracting content, it is just as essential to really include anything relevant. Again, it all comes down to knowing what your visitors do and what kind of content they are interested in at different stages during their visit to your site.

How to Write a Blog Post:

Step 1: Plan your blog post by choosing a topic, creating an outline, conducting research, and checking facts.

Step 2: Craft a headline that is both informative and will capture readers’ attentions.

Step 3: Write your post, either writing a draft in a single session or gradually word on parts of it.

Step 4: Use images to enhance your post, improve its flow, add humor, and explain complex topics.

Step 5: Edit your blog post. Make sure to avoid repetition, read your post aloud to check its flow, have someone else read it and provide feedback, keep sentences and paragraphs short, don’t be a perfectionist, don’t be afraid to cut out text or adapt your writing last minute.

When organizing your content, make sure you have identified the different kind of people, who visit your site. You might want to create user scenarios to get a clear picture of who your users are, and how they use your website. Then prioritize them and see if some are more important than others. Start with the most relevant user. However, make sure that at the end you have thought your content organization through for all users. You might have to include some content elements double because different users might group them differently. Don’t worry about that. If duplicate links are the only way to ensure that all your users find certain content, why not include the link twice.

You know blogging is critical, paramount, indispensable and a must to be successful at marketing. Without it, Google will stop crawling your site; your SEO will tank; your social media accounts will run dry; you’ll have no clout with your leads and customers; and you’ll have fewer pages on which to place calls-to-action and collect new and reconverted leads.

Roger Keyserling


Keep Your Content Structure User Friendly was originally published in eCom Tips on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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