Are you thinking about taking your business online?
Then this article on planning your website is for you.
Note: This section continues from the previous article where we take you through the process of planning your business website.
- For Part 1, go here: A Basic Guide To Website Planning – Part 1
- For Part 2, go here: How To Plan Your Website – What To Do And What Not To Do – Part 2
A Basic Guide To Website Planning – Part 2
Up to this point, we have looked at the following areas of the website planning process:
- Step 1 – Your Website Goals
- Step 2 – Your Website Name
- Step 3 – Managing Your Technology
- Step 4 – Define Your Audience
- Step 5 – Identify Your Key Phrases
- Step 6 – Defining Site Categories
- Step 7 – Creating Your Content Strategy
You’re almost there with your initial website planning work. In this phase of the site planning process, we are going to set up an initial blogging schedule, define what type of content you are going to create for your website or blog, and decide who is going to do what on your site.
Step 8 – Creating Your Blogging Or Content Publishing Schedule
You need to publish content regularly for your business to grow online. A content publishing system is the most productive and effective way to plan, schedule and track your content creation and publishing process.
Creating Your Content Or Blog Publishing Schedule
After creating an initial list of content ideas, the next step is to set up an initial blog or content publishing schedule.
Although this step may not seem to related directly with building your website, by creating your content publishing schedule and then thinking about what types of content you will need to create and who will be responsible for managing all of this (see Steps 9 and 10 below) will help you understand what type of additional services and resources your business will need to have in place once your site has been created.
Content Scheduling Tips:
Tip #1 – Be Consistent
Adding new content to your website consistently is vitally important for building an online audience and increasing your site’s search engine rankings and results.
This is the step where you are actively marketing and promoting your business with content, and so it’s essential that you create a habit of publishing content on your website regularly.
Start by making a commitment to publish a new post each week or fortnight to your website. Decide on a specific day of the week and time that you will sit down to write your articles. Allow 1-2 hours to create and publish (or schedule for publishing) each item of content.
Now, commit to turning this into a regular habit. Keep monitor this commitment and if you need to, adjust your schedule accordingly.
Remind yourself when you sit down to write your content that you are you are working on growing your business, instead of just simply working in it.
Tip #2: Content Scheduling Tools
If you are going to publish content on your site consistently (and you should!), having content scheduling tools can help keep your workflow organized.
You can use simple spreadsheet-based Editorial Templates to help schedule and track the content content publishing, or use a WordPress plugin.
Spreadsheet-Based Editorial Templates
You can keep things simple and schedule your content creation using any spreadsheet program …
Content Planning Template Created Using A Spreadsheet
Use this master spreadsheet to plan your content production and publishing schedule. For example, in your spreadsheet, you can create the following columns:
- Publish Date: Enter the date you plan to publish the content. Tip: You can use color-coding to indicate when content has been published. You can also create a second column to record 1) the date your content needs to be written by, and 2) the date your content is scheduled to publish on your site.
- Author: Who will write or create the content. (See Step 10 below)
- Type: Enter the kind of content you will be creating for this topic. (See Step 9 below)
- Category: If you are publishing content to your blog, enter the blog post category you will publish this item under.
- CTA: What is this specific item of content designed to help you sell or promote? Record your offer or call-to-action here.
- Headline: Enter your article headline, title of your content item, etc.
- Description: Enter a brief description or purpose of your content.
- SEO: The main keyword phrase your content is targeting.
- URL: Once you have published the item, record its URL here. This will make it easier to find the content URL when promoting your content (e.g. on social media, emails, etc)
- Short URL: You can also add a shortened version of the content’s destination URL for promoting on Twitter, or tracking your campaigns.
You don’t need all of the above columns. You can keep things simple by creating a basic spreadsheet containing just these essential columns:
- Publish Date
- Content Author
- Content Format
If you want to create an Editorial Calendar to help plan your content every month, just search online for “free monthly calendar template” or download a free calendar template from WinCalendar.com …
WinCalendar.com – Calendar Maker
WordPress Editorial Scheduling Plugins
If you want to manage your content scheduling directly from WordPress, there are some useful plugins you can install:
Editorial Calendar is a Free plugin for WordPress that allows you to see all your posts and drag and drop them to manage your site.
The Editorial Calendar gives you an overview of your scheduling and when each item will be published. You can drag and drop to move posts, edit posts inside the calendar and manage your entire blogging schedule.
(Screenshot source: Editorial Calendar website)
To learn more visit this site: Editorial Calendar – WordPress Plugin
Edit Flow lets you collaborate with your editorial team inside WordPress.
Some key features of this plugin include:
- Calendar – A month-by-month look at your content.
- Custom Statuses – Define key workflow stages.
- Editorial Comments – Allows private discussion between writers and editors in the admin via threaded commenting.
- Editorial Metadata – Helps you keep track of important details.
- Notifications – Lets you receive timely updates on any content you’re following.
- Story Budget – Lets you view your upcoming content budget details.
- User Groups – Helps you organize your users by department or function.
(Screenshot source: Edit Flow website)
For more information visit this website: Edit Flow – WP Editorial
Oasis Workflow is a powerful feature-rich plugin for WordPress that allows you to automate any editorial workflow process using a simple and intuitive graphical user interface (GUI).
Some of the many useful features of Oasis Workflow include the ability to configure your work flow using a visual work flow designer and simple process/task templates.
(Above screenshots taken from plugin site)
It also also offers role-based routing, lets users view their current assignments and sign off on their tasks once assignments are completed, process history for auditing purposes, task reassignment, due date and email reminders to help you to publish your articles on time, and an out of the box editable workflow to help you get started.
Oasis Workflow also has a “Pro” version that includes additional functionality, such as allowing you to create multiple workflows, copy workflow and copy steps, auto submit, revise published content and more.
To learn more visit this site: Oasis Workflow
Step 9 – Define What Kind Of Content You Will Publish
What Type Of Content Will You Publish On Your Website Or Blog?
After setting up your schedule for creating content, the next step is to establish what kind of content you are going to create to publish on your website.
Are you planning to publish articles, videos, audios, interviews, product comparisons, downloadable PDF reports, etc.?
Knowing what types of content you intend to create for your website is useful, because this helps you understand what other technologies and resources you will need to purchase or budget for to create your content. This could include purchasing video screen capture software for videos and multimedia presentations, slideshows, etc.
Step 10 – Assigning Roles And Responsibilities
Who Will Handle All Areas Of Running Your Website Or Blog?
The last step in the website planning process is to decide who will be responsible for various areas of your site and content and assign these to your human resources, or consider outsourcing.
There are many roles and responsibilities involved in running a professional digital presence.
When completing this step, ask yourself the following questions:
- Who will decide what content gets written/published on your site?
- Who will create the content (e.g. researching, writing and rewriting, sourcing and creating graphics and logos, videos, audios, newsletter content, training content, FAQs, etc.)?
- How will you communicate what needs doing to others? How will people communicate with each other to ensure that everything works smoothly?
- Who will manage the scheduling and publishing of content on your posts and pages and update any outdated content?
- Who will promote and market the website with search engine optimization, online advertising, social media marketing, video marketing, etc.?
- Who will maintain and upgrade site software, install new applications, customize web templates, provide technical support, etc.?
- Who will be responsible for setting and monitoring the budget for all of the above areas (including budgeting for the cost of building your site)?
Who is going to be accountable for all areas of your site?
Depending on your situation, it may be just one person doing it all (e.g. you), or a few people, or perhaps even some outsourced help.
If you don’t know the answer to the above questions before getting your website built, you could end up investing a lot of time and money building something that will not only not help you grow your business, but cost even more of your valuable money and time.
Tip: Focus On Processes, Not People When Assigning Responsibilities
Document or flowchart exactly who will do what in terms of managing your website and content creation.
Focus on documenting which roles should be responsible for the processes involved before assigning names to responsibilities or making people in your team accountable for managing these. This will help you understand how much responsibility and work is involved in each part of the process, explain why you are asking people to take on additional responsibilities, and assist you in planning the allocation of resources accordingly.
Congratulations! You have completed all of the sections of the website planning process. You can now begin looking at options for getting your site built.
Hopefully now you have a better understanding of the web site planning process and how WordPress can help you get better results online. If you need information or assistance with any aspects of web development, see the other articles we have published on this site or contact us.
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The post How To Save Money With These Web Site Planning Tips – Part 3 appeared first on Quick Click Hosting.