If the brand website is the most important channel to support customers as they research products and look for information, then you need to ensure it’s not only providing the right information, but also that the information is easy to find and understand.
Complete a Content Marketing Strategy
Your content marketing strategy identifies the key personas and audiences you want to visit your website and what their journey looks like. When you plan your strategy, think about personas and audiences separately. Personas represent your ideal customer, and their purchase journey. You need to understand what kind of information they are looking for at each stage in their journey and have that information available on the website in the right location.
An audience isn’t yet a customer (although your customer could be part of your audience) but it’s a group of people that you’d like to think about your company if they are ever considering a purchase or suggesting relevant brands to someone who is in purchase mode.
There is some overlap in the type of content you create, but there’s no purchase journey to think about with an audience (although there is hope that maybe someday someone in your audience may shift to being a customer). As Robert Rose said in his keynote address at Content Marketing World 2020, “you have to teach audiences how to be customers.”
Your content marketing strategy will help you define what content you need for your website and how to create a web experience that offers the right information in the right place and is engaging and easy to navigate.
Get SEO Right
Getting SEO right is important if you want customers to find your website. It requires that you know the keywords and phrases that people are searching that you want to be found for and creating content on your website that supports them.
Whether it’s a product page, a blog, or some other area on your website, you need ensure the content you create is relevant to what people want and to show it is, you include keywords and phrases that help search engines index it properly. Leverage a tool like Hrefs or Ubersuggest to research keywords and phrases and make sure the content you develop includes them in the proper way.
Your web CMS should also provide tools to help with SEO including capabilities such as:
- Enforcing the use of metadata (for web pages and content), both system-generated and manually entered.
- Search engine friendly URLs.
- Defined XML Site Maps and customized index rules for specific pages.
- Employ a broken links checker to monitor and fix broken links continually.
- 301 redirects for when you move content around your website to ensure it continues to be findable.
SEO is not only technical and about keywords, but also about creating relevant content that your customers want to consumer (see Content Marketing Strategy). You can’t stuff your content with keywords and assume you’ll win the first page of SERPs.
Create a Blog that Supports Customer Needs
Every brand website has a blog. But every blog doesn’t cater to the needs of the customer or prospective customer. Part of your content marketing strategy includes defining the purpose of your blog and the content you need to publish.
Categorize it according to customer needs, write content is the helpful and useful, and have a way for visitors to subscribe to get regular updates.
Integrate a Chatbot
Conversational marketing is popular way to support website visitors. Help visitors to your website find the information they need quickly and easily by employing a chatbot. You can set up specific chat flows for certain web pages or sections of the website, personalizing the experience using information you may know about the visitor through website cookies.
Offer Relevant Search
It’s surprising how many websites do not offer a search capability even though it is one of the best ways for visitors to the website to quickly find information. A reliable website search requires good search technology that can properly index all your content. Features like browse-by topic navigation, faceted and guided search, and related content widgets can help visitors quickly find what they want.