A content strategy is not a content audit or inventory, but it is the first step in gathering the information necessary to perform a winning content strategy. You must first inventory your existing content. The next step would be to analyze your content using any data available (Google Analytics). After analyzing your content, you can draw conclusions and plan a strategy based on those conclusions.
The content strategy process is a complicated one. One of the most intensive steps is the process is a detailed content audit. You need a detailed content audit to first realize the full scope of your project. DYNO Mapper simplifies this first step by gathering a list of all the items in your website by crawling your url or importing an XML sitemap file. DYNO Mapper returns a full list of all items contained in your website including the number of content levels, subdomains, pages, links, bad links, and site errors. DYNO Mapper will also group pages together based on URL group associations. Don’t worry if some of your pages do not have a parent. DYNO Mapper will create a parent bucket for items that do not hat a parent to save you time organizing your content.
You need to categorize all of your content after your perform your content inventory. DYNO Mapper enables you to categorize your content based on archetypes. If you don’t know about archetypes please visit Todd Moy’s blog entry titled “Improve your site maps with page archetypes”. The following definitions were taken from this page.
Consumption: a view designed for extended reading, such as an article. Often this is presented as a stack to suggest lots of content that shares an identical form.
Dialog: a modal view. I use this when it's essential to describe an interaction that occurs within a certain page state.
External Entity: an object outside of the scope of the design, but whose presence needs to be accounted for. A direct mail campaign that drives users to the site would be a good example.
File: a physically downloadable file, like a PDF or an executable program
Fragment: bits of consumable information on a page. I use this only when it's essential to document in-page content like lightboxes or tabs.
Gallery: essentially the same as a listing, but represented as a grid.
Interactive: a game-like or novel interactive experience. Usually the quality and nature of interaction is meaningfully different from a Form archetype.
Process: a process that a user can't see, but whose operation is critical to the experience. A process that blocks for a long time before returning data is a good example.
You are not stuck using these archetypes if you have developed your own custom categories. DYNO Mapper enables you to create your own custom archetypes. All archetypes can be applied to multiple pages with one click, saving your precious time for more important activities.
Each sitemap has the ability to sort and filter by your assigned archetypes. This is extremely useful when presenting and working through your strategy.
You can also categorize your content based on WorkFlow status. You can tag each page as complete or incomplete and filter these pages on each sitemap. This is a great feature if you are also working your way through a website redesign.
After you have performed your content audit and categorization, it is time to pull in all of your analytics data. DYNO Mapper makes this extremely easy by just connecting your Google analytics account.
Each page on your sitemap will have an analytics icon that will allow you to see date ranges and comparisons.
Use your sitemap filters to highlight pages based on analytics metrics. The highlight filter will let you quickly discern pages of importance and pages that are just keeping your users from finding pages of priority. If you believe in the 80 / 20 rule as it applies to web content, then simply filter Top 80% of Pageviews and DYNO Mapper will highlight the top 80% of Pageviews in your sitemap. If you want to see what constitutes the least amount of traffic on your site, simply enter Bottom 1% of Pageviews and you will be extremely surprised on how much clutter is caused by pages that users do not visit or priority content that is hidden because of poor navigation.
Now that you have all of your data in one place you can start planning your strategy. Your strategy should be based on defined goals. Each website’s goal is a unique one, so we are not going to tell you how to do this last step.
When thinking about content, first ask yourself why? Your content strategy should include detail about what you create, when you create it, and how it is created thought a content calendar.
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