Responsive web design (RWD) is no longer an “upcoming” technology trend; it is here and it is time for your business to make the switch. One of the scariest parts of moving from a traditional site to RWD (a site that automatically resizes content and layout depending on the type of screen your visitors are using) is deciding what to do with the content.
Worry no more! I am here to guide you through getting your content ready for a responsive website.
Study the analytics
You should have been using analytics from the beginning, but even if you haven’t, now is the time to start. Look around and find out what pages people are looking at and what ones have had no visitors. Use Google Analytics as a way to guide you through what types of content should remain on your site and what would be OK to take a hike.
Add and subtract content
The analytics will tell you what content needs to stay, be moved, or ditched. Don’t be afraid to ditch content. Smartphone screens are small and people will appreciate your brevity.
Organize the winning content
Once you have decided what content is worthy of staying, you need to prioritize it. Order your content so that the most important pieces are at the top of the page. That way most people will find what they need without having to scroll too far. That said, don’t be afraid of the scroll factor. Designing “above the fold” is no longer a worry; if you’re audience is checking out your site via their smartphones and other mobile devices, chances are they’re hip to the need to scroll.
Format the winning content
People using mobile devices rarely read website content word-for-word, so it is best to format your text so it is scannable. Bold headlines and the most important details, use bullet points, and break up paragraphs. Make sure you have a visual strategy as well and work with a responsive web designer who also has an eye for what will look good from a visual standpoint on all screen types.
Give a preview
If you have especially long pieces on content, it is important to break it up. Use a header to title your content, give a brief description, and link to the details. This formula is similar to that of an email newsletter. It allows users to see the highlights of what you offer and decide what details they care to read. Looking for other tips to trim down your content? Check out this great post on getting your content ready for responsive design.
Be responsive in your own right
As a copy writer, you need to be responsive to the world around you, both online and off. Listen to what your audience is saying and if you get a lot of complaints about a section of your website, fix it. Check out your competitors’ websites and take hints from them. Finally, if you hear people talking about what they love/hate about a certain website, take note.
Is your current website designed responsively? What do you think some of the challenges are when editing content for responsive design? Let’s talk about it below!