Content strategy during web project
Large-scale website projects require content planning and gathering to be decided early on in the project. Often the content needs to be gathered and written even before the page templates have been agreed upon. Hence, it cannot wait until the CMS has been set up. Instead one needs to work on a separate, parrallel to the technical development, content path.
Structuring content using sitemaps
Using pen and paper for sketching up a site map is good enough, if the website is not too big and if the stakeholders are already aligned on the structure. But, for large-scale websites where stakeholders from around the world are to iterate the sitemap process other tools are needed.
That's when Slickplan comes in. It creates sitemaps using drag and drop functionality for making changes in the structure. Saving the sitemaps in different versions allows for going back and forward in the process, perfect for iterating the content structure process.
Gathering text, image and file content
Gathering the web content before the CMS has been set up, and still being able to involve project stakeholders, requires seamless tools. That is why we recommend and use GatherContent. It is a tool to plan, organize and collaborate on website content. Its greatness comes from
- having an overview on how the content emerges
- being able to collaborate between content stakeholders
- being similar to a CMS making it easy to work with for editors
Exporting the content into the CMS
Okay, so the content is ready in GatherContent, what do we do? Either the pages can be exported manually by copy pasting, which is very time-consuming. However, we have built an automatic export using GatherContent's API.
It automatically sets up the pages in EPiServer and imports the content from GatherContent. This is not only timesaving, but also allows for spending more time on reviewing the content and improving the SEO when in the CMS.
Summary of content development
Content is important for a website. A website without content is not a website. That is why it is important to focus on the content long before the CMS structure has been set up. Allowing the project team to iterate the content process in order to find the best structure to optimize the web, long before it has been developed.
Using the above mentioned tools plays one part in making the content process as seamless as possible, in order to achieve great results. Do you have any experience of similar tools?