With the number of Web sites growing day by day, it is the content that makes any good site stand out from the pack. But what distinguishes the content from the chatter? Good content scores highly when measured against three vital criteria – the three C’s….
The content itself must be high quality. It needs to be accurate and grammatically correct. It needs to be concise and free from formatting or spelling errors. Ultimately, it must contain something actually worth saying. Small errors and inaccuracies, obvious omissions and wild exaggerations – all these undermine the good work of your content.
To be worthwhile, your content needs to be relevant to the general subject of the site, and relevant to the section of the web site in which it is placed.
The content itself could be of the highest quality, but if it is irrelevant or incongruous, it will destroy the flow of the site and lead your visitors into dead ends.
If your site is structured around selling your books and newsletters about stationery, for instance, why include stock prices or weather forecasts?
Even if they are slick and sophisticated, with interactive graphics and constantly updating content – if it doesn’t lead your visitors towards fulfilling their goals – or your goals – it will be a distraction. In the worst case, it will distract the visitors and provide them with a convenient route out of your web site, before they can become a customer.
The content needs to contribute something to the overall message or purpose of the web site. It may be high quality content, exquisitely written and beautifully presented, and linked seamlessly into the flow and structure of the site, but if it contributes little or nothing towards the overall purpose of your site, it is a wasted effort.
Whether you want your site to educate, inform or amuse your visitors; whether you want to encourage and entice your site visitors with products and services that you would like them to purchase from you – or from your resellers; whether you want your visitors to feel confidence in your brand or company; your content must reinforce this purpose and lead your visitors towards the goals of your site.
Unless your site content can match up well to the three C’s: content, context and contribution it isn’t content at all – it’s just a distraction and you may be better off without it.