You’ve finally decided on a web designer or web design company and now they’re asking you to provide content. Content refers to text, photos, PDFs, video, etc. that you’d like on the website. Since this is usually the place people get stuck, I thought I’d offer my two cents.
Hiring a professional photographer is going to be your best bet for quality photos you can use on the website and in printed marketing materials. However, I realize a lot of people can’t afford that. Whether you decide to take them yourself or have a professional photographer take them for you, here are some guidelines to follow:
- I prefer uncropped, original photos for the entire website.
- Resolutions of 240 pixels per inch or higher are best so make sure your camera is not set to the lowest resolution. I will update the resolution for the web, but it’s better for me to work with in case I need to do any editing.
- For each page, I will tell you how many photos I will likely be able to use. I may not be able to use all of the ones you give me for each page, but it’s best to supply extras up front.
- You must have the copyright to these photos, which you do if you take them or if it says so in your contract with your photographer.
- Please don’t add any filters (black/white, sepia, pixelate, stylize, blur, sketch, brush strokes, etc.) to the photos as these may not match the design.
- It helps me a lot if you name the photos as page-name-01.jpg and page-name-02.jpg. The numbers should be in order of the photo you’d like used the most for that page, second, third, etc.
Content Copy Writing
I recommend writing the content as if the reader has never heard of you before and you are actually speaking to them. Using business jargon makes it harder to understand for the average user and usually turns people away. You want to use the website to really develop your businesses voice. Friendly, but direct and to the point is usually best.
Also, break up your writing into chunks. Use headings and paragraphs. Bulleted lists are also a good way to get out information quickly and concisely. Since we know from studies that users don’t read websites, but instead they scan websites, headings help them find the content they want more quickly.
Another tip: Instead of saying things like, “We can get you the results you want.” you may want to say, “We do get you the results you want.” It helps solidify in the visitors mind that you’re proactive and good at what you do. If you’d like an example, I wrote most of this page for Darrah’s Towing.
Please designate which things are linked to other internal pages on the website as well, just include the text in a blue, underlined font with [link to: page name]. Ideally, I should be able to copy and paste most of what you’ve written to push the website development along as quickly as possible.
Most important of all, if you have any questions just ask! I’m more than happy to offer advice or do some of the copy writing for you, if you are pressed for time.