Websites - Things that work: Write, write, write by Moira Ashleigh

Posted on July 31, 2015 at 12:30 PM

Swan feather floating Woburn, MA

So you have a new business, venture or organization, that is great! And now you want to put up a website, that makes sense. Where do you start?

Before you get a domain name, find a host, choose a content management system or find a designer; the best thing you can do is spend some time writing. I know I am not fond of it either, but it will make a big difference to the end result.

"What do I need to write? I just want a website with cool pictures and animations."

Spend some time writing about:

1. The goals of your business, venture or organization.
2. What you need the website to do for your organization (and be specific).
3. Who "you" are including bios of personnel or members and what three short paragraphs you would want to see in an article about your venture.
4. Who you believe your audiences are and rate them by order of importance. Are you required by law to have your website be an ADA compliant website?
5. Create a list of similar businesses, ventures or organizations.
6. Show how are you different from those on your similar list. What will make you stand out?
7. What do you want your contact information to be? Is it all going to one person or a group, or several separate persons? Will you post your mailing address or not? Will there be a phone number to use for folks who are electronically challenged?
8. Estimate how often you think you will have new material for your website, and what type of content you expect it will be.

This is a short starter list. After you have your website under way there will probably be a need for more writing. But when you get this completed you, and any designer you may choose to help you, will have a much better understanding of what your needs are for your website.

Remember, if you don't feel super confident in your writing, you can ask someone to edit it after you have completed the first pass. You could even hire a copywriter after they get a sense of where you are going from this base set of written information.

Finally NEVER NEVER plagiarize any text. The Internet will catch you, it always does. When caught you will loose a great deal of credibility in the eyes of your audience. It is just not worth it.

A list like this is also a good starting task when redesigning a website. Writing will help you get that fresh look, feel and sound.

New website mantra: Write, Write, Write.

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