Template for Website Content
But how do you get started producing website content if you’ve never done it before? Templates are one answer. Every brand-owned template for website content helps scale content production and marketing ROI.
Templates also create consistency across your content, streamlining the writing process and helping you communicate brand guidelines efficiently.
In this guide to website content templates, we’ll cover:
- Using templates to scale your content production
- Creating your first website content template
Let’s start with…
Why You Need Templates for Website Content
With templates, you can create new content quickly and at scale. You can also use a content template to keep content consistent and profitable. Let’s go over all the benefits of website content templates below.
First, let’s talk about saving time and resources. With templates, you don’t have to design and format each blog post, video, etc from scratch. Instead, you’re using templated elements each time, minimising the amount of work required to produce content.
Second, using templates helps you make your content more profitable. Templated content gives you more data insights because it’s consistent. You get to see how people engage with different media types, offers, etc. This helps focus content production on what’s really working.
Third, website content templates focus your efforts on what’s needed. You’re working with premade templates, so you’re not going to produce something random. Instead, you’re always going to create content that’s necessary and important.
Last but not least, templates make it easier to manage created and published content. You can use templates to create a consistent naming convention for your content files, for example.
It doesn’t matter if you need high-value pillar content or not. Templates save money, increase ROI, and make life easier for your team.
Note that for larger projects, you may want to create a library of templates for different types of content. Blog posts, social media posts, and landing pages all need different templates. To make sure you enjoy the 4 benefits listed above, keep templates versatile and diverse!
Template Example: Website content
These would include templated headings, subheadings, body text, images, and calls-to-action (CTAs). Working with these could be as easy as putting your keywords – e.g. “landline phone service in Georgia” – into the templates.
This is a lot more productive and less time-consuming than creating content from scratch. Valuable!
How to Create a Website Content Template
Now that you’ve learned how using templates can help you scale your content production, it’s time to design your own. Below, we outline the most important components of a content template and explain how to set your creative team up for success.
1. Research Your Topic and Keywords
When selecting keywords, it’s important to consider what users are interested in. Here, keywords can be a huge aid.
If you’re focusing on SEO, online tools like Google’s Keyword Planner, Yoast, and Ahrefs can help you find the right keywords. Enter a seed word, and the tools will give you a range of keywords that match it.
Analysing the keywords will give you a strong idea of what your audience is interested in… And which content types work in your industry.
Another good way to find concepts and templates that work is on social media. Here, you’re going to use hashtags to identify themes and content types that work for your audience.
2. Write a Content Brief
Content briefs help streamline the content creation process by providing all necessary information upfront.
With briefs, writers and other content creators can focus on producing high-quality content without having to guess what you want. Thorough, thoughtful briefs also align content with your big-picture goals and your target audience.
This is why it’s important to create brief templates that work as a checklist for editors and a guideline for writers, illustrators, and other creators. For website content, you’ll mostly need blog posts and landing page briefs that cover…
- Objectives: The goal or purpose of the webpage. This may include information on the target audience, the desired outcome, and any key messages or calls to action.
- Audience: A detailed description of the target audience. This might include demographics, interests, and any other relevant information to help your writer create engaging copy.
- Tone and style: Specify the tone and style of the webpage. Should writers use formal or informal language? A serious or lighthearted tone?
- Keywords: A list of relevant keywords. Include these to help your writers optimise their copy for SEO.
- Sources: Any sources that the writer should review before beginning a draft.
- Due date: Specify a deadline and target milestones for steps in the drafting and editing process.
We’ll cover some of the above points in more detail below. Suffice to say, standardised briefs are essential to any template for website content.
3. Plan Search-friendly URLs
Sometimes called ‘slugs’, web page URLs work like street addresses for houses.They help users and search engines navigate to precisely the right page.
URLs matter in content marketing because they help search engines to identify and distinguish different pieces of content, and users to access and share it.
A search-friendly URL typically includes a relevant keyword and makes a direct reference to the content of the page. It should be easy to read and understand for humans, but not so long that it might confuse an algorithm.
Your templates should include standard URL formulas. This way, your writers, editors, and website managers will keep URLs consistent and SEO-optimised at all times.
4. Standardise Meta Titles
The title tag for your webpage should accurately describe the content in about 50 to 60 characters. Your visitors won’t see it, but this piece of site information plays an important role in getting your page found by the right people.
A clear, concise title tag helps search engines categorise your page correctly and connect it to relevant queries. As with URLs, you want to include simple title tag formulas in your templates.
5. Standardise Meta Descriptions
A meta description helps search engines understand the kind of content a page contains. It’s also what users see when they look you up on Google, so it needs to appeal to both humans and robots.
A good meta description provides a short, relevant summary and uses engaging language to capture interest. But good meta descriptions can be very difficult to write because they need to appeal to both Google and human readers.
This is why you need to templatise meta descriptions for your website content. Examples of points to include in a template:
- Using action words like “discover” or “explore” to encourage visitors to click through to your page.
- Including numbered points in meta descriptions for list articles (e.g. “top 10 coats for this summer”)
- Keeping descriptions short because search engines truncate descriptions over 160 characters.
6. Plan Your Headings and Subheadings
Together, the headers and subheaders form the outline of your webpage content. They tell Google what each page is about. They also help readers navigate your content and tell your creative team what to include on each page (and in each content piece).
Think of header content as the skeleton of your piece. It should flow logically enough that someone can immediately navigate website content. Good headers will also visually divide webpage content into sections, making it easier for visitors to find the information they need.
The words you include in your headers and subheaders also have a significant impact on your page’s SEO score. Sprinkling important keywords through your main headers helps search engines understand the topic and content of the page. And the higher the heading level, the higher the rankings for that heading’s keyword.
That’s why you need to add rules and formulas for headers and subheaders. Different brands use these differently, and you want to stay consistent (and easy for Google to discover).
This is also a good opportunity to style your website. For example, do you want headings and subheadings to be sentence case or title case? This is something else to consider when creating templates.
7. Body Copy Instructions
For blog posts, be sure to leave space for this in your content creation template. This is where your content creators will add their text.
It’s important for the body copy template to include information that helps educate, entertain, or inform an audience. For example, how long should each section of body copy be to stay readable? How long can (and should) paragraphs be?
We suggest creating separate mini-templates for 3 types of body copy: educational, entertaining, and informative.
Educational content focuses on teaching the audience about a subject and helps position your brand as an expert or thought leader. Tutorials, white papers, and infographics are all examples of educational content.
Entertaining content builds brand awareness and loyalty by engaging potential customers. Contests and quizzes can also serve as valuable sources for data about your audience, while personal stories from founders and employees humanise your brand.
Informative content adds value by providing solutions to common problems in your target industry or sharing sector-specific news. Blog posts and articles are two of the best-known types of informative content but this category also includes e-books and guides.
Taking a moment to remind your writers of the ultimate objective for your webpage leads to more effective copy. This goes double for projects like landing pages, where you need conversion-specific copy that encourages visitors to take action.
If your content will include a call to action button, be sure to make a note in the content writing template. Including information about buttons in the content brief can help writers to craft effective copy that enhances user experience or guides visitors to take a specific action.
For example, if you want users to submit a form, the writer may need to include specific instructions or messaging on the button to guide visitors through the process.
A button that leads to a new page needs a label that accurately previews what visitors will find on the destination page.
9. Images & Videos
In your templates, leave space for links to images or videos that capture your audience’s attention and make your content more engaging. If possible, add instructions to give content writers insight into the kind of visual content you want.
This section of the content writing template will make finding and vetting much more efficient. Instead of hunting and clicking on embedded links, you can see the source of an image at a glance. Be sure to include appropriate meta tags to help with SEO.
10. Self-Editing Instructions
With templated content, reviewing becomes extra-important. You want to make sure that your writers understand the templates they work with and use them properly.
The best way to make sure content is reviewed and edited properly is to add self-editing instructions to your template. Add simple steps that help your writers and editors make sure the content is exactly what it needs to be.
After reading this part of the template…
- Your writers have a clear understanding of your expectations.
- Your content editor has a simple, easy-to-follow set of guidelines to keep content consistent across pages.
Make sure your writers and editors understand that the page will undergo several rounds of edits focused on different aspects of the page. One round for structure; another for accuracy, clarity and style; and a final round to check grammar, test links and confirm images.
Don’t Leave Without Reading This
The better your templates, the less work you and your content production team has to do. And with website content, there’s a lot you can automate and standardise with templates.
Key elements to standardise include content briefs, body copy, and visuals. Secondary ones include on-page elements like meta titles, headings, and subheadings.
Want Australia’s #1 marketing agency to help you create winning website content templates? We’d be happy to jump on a free strategy call and share our expertise. Click on the image below to schedule now (before we run out of free slots!).