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How to Avoid Dreaded Content Delays

by Paul J. Scott

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Usually, once a new client decides what they want their new website to look like, they are anxious to see the job finished. But things don’t always go smoothly from the initial meeting to the final website launch. In fact, there is one part of the process that tends to trip business owners and marketers up time and time again…

What’s this productivity pothole that stops websites from being launched? Writing and editing content for the new pages.

Over the years, we have seen otherwise finished websites be held up for weeks or months at a time while clients tried to find the right words to fill them with. Putting your message together in a way that resonates with customers without wasting space is never going to be easy, but there are steps you can take to make the job smaller and ensure that content writing doesn’t become an obstacle.

Here are a handful of tips you can use to avoid dreaded content delays and make sure your website gets launched on time:

Start with Schedules and Guidelines

Your web design or development team should give you some guidance on when they’ll need content from you, and which pages need to be written. In addition, they may be able to provide you with some guidelines as to how many words you’ll need, and where the text will appear on different pages. It’s much easier to “fill in the blanks” with your web content than it is to start with an empty page, so use these resources to help you understand the size of the project.

Assign the Work

Depending on the size of your company, and the talent you have on your team, it might make sense for you to have your employees help write some of the content. That’s particularly true if they have more knowledge about specific products, departments, or FAQs than you do. If that’s the case, assign the work to your staff, but give them deadlines that leave you a good margin for error in case they procrastinate or become overwhelmed.

Follow a Three-Step Process

Even if you know what you want to say, putting words into a blank document can be difficult. To make it easier, approach the project the way a professional writer would and follow a three-step process: Outline your main points, write a first draft, and then go through successive edits until your web content reads the way you would like it to. By using this kind of progressive system, you don’t have the pressure of trying to make your writing perfect on the first try.

Work in Blocks of Time

You don’t have to write your web content all at once. In fact, things will probably be much easier for you if you don’t. Instead of binge-writing until your eyes and mind get tired, consider finishing the task in short blocks (for instance, 15 minutes a day). You’ll make progress faster than you think, and can get through the job without being burnt out in the process.

Hire a Professional

If you find that writing web content just isn’t your cup of tea, or that you really can’t devote the time to it, consider working with a professional copywriter. He or she should be able to take your ideas (from a first draft or interview) and then turn them into something that’s clear, compelling, and search engine-friendly. Plus, a reputable writer can deliver your pages with plenty of time to spare if you give them enough notice.

Writing great web content is an important part of getting your site launched and seeing it make the right impression with customers. So be sure to follow these tips to avoid common delays and get what you need faster.

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