Podcast Episode 49 – The Ultimate Guide to Planning Website Content

Unlock the secrets to planning compelling website content in this episode of Website Success. Chrissy Rey guides you through the steps in her Ultimate Website Content Planner, which includes crafting your mission statement, identifying core values, and establishing your website’s unique personality. You’ll learn how to create a content strategy that resonates with your target audience, drives engagement, and boosts your online presence. Discover practical tips for organizing your content, creating effective calls to action, and maintaining consistency across your digital platforms. Start your journey to planning your website’s content today!

Don’t forget to subscribe for more insightful episodes on creating a successful website. Grab your Ultimate Website Content Planner today to simplify your content planning process and ensure your website truly represents your business.

Listen to the Episode

Show Notes

Welcome back to Website Success! In this episode, your host, Chrissy Rey, walks you through the essentials of effectively planning your website content. Discover the tools and strategies you need to engage your target audience and set your website up for long-term success. Chrissy breaks down the content planning process into simple, actionable steps that anyone, tech-savvy or not, can follow.

Key Topics

  • [00:01:28] Importance of content planning and its impact on audience engagement.
  • [00:02:57] Key steps to define your mission statement and align your content strategy.
  • [00:06:00] Crafting a vision statement to inspire and guide your business goals.
  • [00:07:16] Establishing your website’s personality and how it resonates with your target audience.
  • [00:08:24] Setting clear content goals to support your business objectives.
  • [00:13:56] Tips for organizing your content effectively to optimize website navigation.

Resources Mentioned


[00:00:09] Hey there, website rockstars. Welcome back to website success. I’m Chrissy Rey, and I know it’s been a little while since the last episode, but I took a much needed break to work on a few projects, and now I’m back. And today I am ready to talk about planning your website content.

[00:00:27] We’re going to explore my Ultimate Website Content Planner, which is sort of like a cheat code for planning and organizing all of your content, because there’s a lot that you’ve got to do, but don’t worry because I’m going to break this down into simple, manageable steps that anyone can follow even if you’re not tech savvy. And really creating content and planning your content, it doesn’t require you to be very tech savvy. There are some things for the tech savvy, but not a whole lot.

[00:00:52] Now we won’t actually cover the writing of the content in this episode, but we will get to that. I promise.

[00:00:59] By the way, if you want to get the most out of this episode, make sure you head over to websitesuccessacademy.com and go to the resources section to grab my Ultimate Website Content Planner. While you’re there, you may also want to download the Website Success Blueprint if you haven’t already. Or go back and listen to episode seven through 18 of the podcast, because you are going to need some information from that in order to create your content.

[00:01:26] Okay. Let’s get started.

[00:01:28] Now, if you’ve already listened to the website planning series that I talked about again, that’s episode seven through 18, then you know I’m a big, big, big fan of planning things out when I can. And sure you could just wing it, but then you might find yourself missing the mark when it comes to engaging your target audience, because it’s really all of your content, your website, everything is all about them. Now having a well-planned content strategy can help make sure that you’re writing your content effectively and really communicating your message, engaging your audience and ultimately driving the actions that you want that target audience, those visitors to your website to take.

[00:02:08] And here’s the best part. Spending time on planning now is going to save you tons of time and headaches down the road. So trust me, your future self will thank you for planning now.

[00:02:20] So, where do we start? Well, before we can do that, we do need to rewind just a tiny bit because before you can actually start planning your content. You do need to go back and figure out your offer, your goals, your target audience, and all of that stuff. And that’s not really what I would consider part of planning your content. That’s really more part of planning your overall website. And I do cover that in the Website Success Blueprint. And I also covered that previously in episode seven through 18 of the podcast. So make sure you go back and listen to all of that. And then after you’ve got all that figured out, then come back, listen to this and you can start planning your content.

[00:02:57] Okay. Now for the first real step in planning your content, and that is going to be coming up with your mission statement. You want to use your mission statement as sort of like a north star for your content and you can break it down into three simple questions. Number one. What is your business’s core purpose? Number two, who is your target audience? And number three. How do you solve your target audiences problems or fulfill their needs?

[00:03:25] Once you answer those questions, you can combine them into a two to three sentence mission statement that summarizes those answers. For example, a mission statement for a virtual assistant might be, “I help overwhelmed entrepreneurs reclaim their time by managing their administrative tasks efficiently and effectively, allowing them to focus on growing their business.”

[00:03:47] And this might seem small, but trust me, it’s very powerful because every piece of content that you create should align with that mission so you’re going to have focused and consistent messaging across your entire brand. So not just your content for your website, but keep that mission statement in mind for your social media content. If you’ve got a podcast, keep it in mind for that. Any email newsletters that you send out, you want to keep that mission statement in mind. So again, it’s sort of like the north star for guiding your content.

[00:04:18] Next thing we’re going to do is move on to identifying your values and the values are the heart and soul of your business. They’re going to be what you stand for and what you believe in and what your business stands for and what your business believes in. When your content consistently reflects your values it’s going to build trust and loyalty with your audience.

[00:04:39] Now in the content planner, I guide you through reflecting on your business’s guiding principles, considering your personal values and how they align with your business, and identifying values that resonate with your target audience. And the goal is going to be to narrow it down to three to five core values that truly represent your business. Those values should be authentic, memorable, and easy for you to communicate. So for instance, a sustainable clothing brand might have values like environmental responsibility, ethical production and transparency.

[00:05:13] Once you’ve got correct values nailed down, it’s time to move on to your vision statement. While your mission statement is all about the here and now, your vision statement is about the future. It’s going to be your big audacious goal for your business. Where do you see your business going? What impact do you want to make? It should be a big audacious goal. It should be inspiring and ambitious. It’s going to be what gets you out of bed in the morning, excited to work on your business. And for your audience, it’s going to give them a sense of where you’re headed and why they should come along for the ride. So for example, a vision statement for an online education platform might be to create a world where quality education is accessible to everyone regardless of their location or financial situation.

[00:06:00] All right. Now, we’re going to get to one of my personal favorite parts. Establishing your website’s personality. I want you to do something for me. Close your eyes for a moment, and imagine your website as a person. Who are they? Are they a 40 something mom who juggles a family and her own business, but still has time for self care? Or maybe they’re the 40 something. Mom who’s really struggling to keep it all together but uses her wicked sense of humor to get herself through the day? Or maybe they’re you and maybe you’re one of those two? I actually work with a lot of women business owners who use their own personalities for their websites. They create a persona that’s based on them. And that’s totally okay when that personality is what resonates with their target audience and what reflects the business in general.

[00:06:47] So the key here is to create a persona that does resonate with that target audience while still staying true to your mission, values, and vision.

[00:06:57] And this persona, this personality is going to guide your way when you write your content, the tone you use, and eventually you might even use it for the design choices that you make when it comes to your logo, your colors, your fonts, and the visual appearance of your website.

[00:07:16] In the planner, I ask you to describe your website’s personality, the specific words or phrases that this personality or person might use and the communication style and emotional tone that your website should have. Documenting all of that can be incredibly helpful in maintaining a consistent voice across all of your media. So not just your website, but all of your content, including your social media, printed materials, email newsletters, your blog, and any other content that you create.

[00:07:45] Now that we’ve got the foundational elements in place. It’s time to establish our content goals. This is where we get really specific by answering questions like: Why will people visit your website? What do you want to achieve with your content? What content will customers need to see before they will make a purchase? What objections will you need to proactively address? What questions can you proactively answer? And these questions really help you focus on creating content that serves a purpose. Remember every piece of your content on your website should be working towards your larger business goals. And those are the goals that you established for your website When you did the Website Success Blueprint.

[00:08:24] Now here’s a bonus. When you create that content with clear goals in mind, you are also naturally optimizing that content for search engine. So you’re doing a little bit of both.

[00:08:36] Now once you’ve established your goals, it’s time to list out all of the necessary information that you need to share on your website. And this is going to be where you brain dump everything you think your ideal customer avatar or your ICA, which you created in the Website Success Blueprint, everything that they need to know before working with you. They probably need to know who you are, what you offer, how you address their wants, needs, challenges, and pain points, who you’ve helped in the past and why you are the best choice. Don’t hold it back here, get it all out . Just write it all down into a Google doc or word doc or something like that.

[00:09:12] And then the next step is going to be to take all of that information and turn it into a site outline. So you can think of it, like creating the chapters for a book. What are the main sections you need? And then what information that you put in that brain dump is going to go where. Now most businesses need at least a homepage, an about page, products or services pages, or both, and a contact page. And your website might also need pages for testimonials, staff bios, a frequently asked questions, and more. You also need legal pages like a privacy policy and terms of service. Your outline might look different depending on your business and what your target audience is, but that’s okay. The key is to have a clear structure that makes sense for your content and your audience.

[00:09:58] Once you have an outline, you can take it a step further and create a site map. And this is a visual representation of your website structure. It’s optional, but I do find that a lot of my clients find it very helpful to really be able to visualize what’s going to go where. The site map is going to start with your homepage at the top, and then it’s going to branch out to your main pages and any sub pages under those.

[00:10:21] Now here’s a pro tip when you’re organizing your content into the site outline and to the site map, try to limit your top level pages to six or fewer any more than that can overwhelm your visitors. So if you find yourself with more than six main sections, see if you can combine some of them or nest them under other pages.

[00:10:40] Alright, we’re making great progress. The next step is going to be to identify your calls to action, which are also called CTAs. And these are going to be the signposts that guide your visitors toward taking specific actions on your website. Maybe you want them to book a call or sign up for a newsletter or make a purchase. Those CTA should be phrases that encourage visitors to take the desired action. So for example, book a call or start your free trial.

[00:11:07] Now before you start creating your content, let’s talk about where to put it because you probably don’t already have your website ready to go at this point. I usually create a shared content folder in a Google drive for my clients and this folder is gonna have all of the documents for each page of your website, plus it can have additional folders for things like blog posts and images, and any other media that you want to upload to your website. Now trust me, having a clear organization system is going to save you so much time and headache down the road, especially if you’re working with team members and service providers.

[00:11:43] I just worked on a project with a client and we had this shared Google drive where they could put all of the Google docs for their content and their photographer was able to upload their images and they were able to upload additional images and logos and any other content that we needed. So everything is in one place and we could see what they had and what they still needed.

[00:12:04] After you get that folder set up, if you already have some content, so maybe from an existing website or other marketing materials, I do recommend going through what you already have and deciding what you can keep, what needs updating and what you need to create from scratch. I usually create a content inventory spreadsheet to document all of that information. And you can find an example of that inventory spreadsheet in my content planner. So if you’re going to use that, make sure you grab that content inventory spreadsheet.

[00:12:35] The next thing I like to do is collect all of my social proof. And this is going to include testimonials reviews, media mentions. And expert endorsements, all of which are invaluable when it comes to building trust with your audience. You can create a document and put it in that shared drive or shared folder and store all of that information until it’s time to add to your website.

[00:12:57] Okay. Now we are getting to the meat of it, which is actually creating your content. You might already have some content at this point from your previous website, any marketing materials that you’ve got, and I will get into advice for actually writing the content in another episode, but for now, what I want you to do is create a document for each of the pages that you put in your site outline, or your site map and put those in your content folder.

[00:13:22] In the planner, I do give you templates for common pages like about services, contact, and individual blog posts. And those templates can be super helpful in making sure that you cover all of the important information on each of those pages.

[00:13:37] Now you might’ve noticed that we haven’t talked about the homepage yet and that’s because I usually save it for last. Your homepage is going to usually include snippets of content from other pages. So to me, it makes sense to tackle it after you’ve written the rest of your content. The content planner does include a template for planning the perfect homepage.

[00:13:56] Last but not least. I do want to talk about legal pages. I mentioned them earlier, but I want to talk about them a little bit more. Every website needs certain legal pages, like a privacy policy and the terms of service, and depending on your content and where your customers are located, you might also need a disclaimer, cookie policy and cookie notice. Now, unless you’re an attorney, I strongly recommend using a service like Termageddon, which is what we use with all of our clients. And that service is going to generate all of those legal documents for you. You’re going to answer a bunch of questions and it spits out the policies for you.

[00:14:31] I’m not an attorney, so I can’t advise you. I can’t tell you what documents your website is going to need, but it’s a good idea to use a service like Termageddon or speak with an attorney to figure it out because it’s going to be better to get it right than to risk legal issues down the line.

[00:14:47] All right.

[00:14:48] I know we’ve covered a lot of ground today and I know it might seem a little overwhelming, but remember, you don’t have to do it all at once. Take it step-by-step, and before you know it, you will have a solid plan for your website’s content. And the best part, this plan isn’t just for your website. It can help to maintain consistency across all of your marketing materials. So from your social media posts, email newsletters and everything in between.

[00:15:13] Remember the Ultimate Website Content Planner is available in the resources section at websitesuccessacademy.com. It’s going to walk you through each of the steps in detail, and it’s also going to give you templates and worksheets to make the process easier. And it doesn’t get into any of the details about actually writing your concept, but the templates do have a lot of suggestions for that. And I will talk about that in a future episode.

[00:15:38] Creating content for your website is a journey, but it is well worth it. With a solid plan in place, you’ll be well on your way to creating a website that truly represents your business and resonates with your target audience. And here’s something exciting to think about this plan isn’t just for now, just like your Website Success Blueprint wasn’t just for creating your website. It’s also about setting up your future for success. As your business grows and evolves, you can easily update and expand your website because of all of this planning that you’ve done before you started creating it.

[00:16:12] That’s all for today’s episode. I know it was a lot, but you’ve got this. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out and don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast for more tips on creating a successful website until next time, happy planning.​