I’ve had several conversations in recent days about websites suffering from extreme growing pains. You know the kind; they have tons of information that you can’t find using the navigation maze…I mean menu. It all starts innocently enough. “I need a simple website for my business,” you say to your designer/programmer/neighbor’s kid. “No problem” is the reply. And a new website is born, exactly the way you said you wanted it; Home page, About Us, Contact Us, Services.
But now you want to add a page about the new whiz kid you just hired. There’s another page. Hmmm. I guess we’ll just add that under “About Us”. And the new service package? Just throw that under “Services”.
You’re smart though. You know good SEO is all about adding content so you add those articles from your newsletter for good measure.
Ummmm. Those can go under…well, they aren’t services exactly, and they’re not about the company exactly. Just go ahead and squish in a new top-level menu item called “Articles” and drop the articles in under that.
Over time, you dutifully add more articles and information and include them where they kinda, sorta fit.
Before you know it your navigation – your clean, simple navigation – looks like your cat sat on your keyboard. The menu is awash with links to pages upon pages of great information but lacks meaningful structure.
O Blog, Where Art Thou?
Like most things, planning is key. Your website infrastructure needs to work for where you are now and where you will be in three years or more. Establishing a means for organizing your existing and future content is essential.
Including a blog on your site allows for easy scalability. By it’s very nature a blog is designed to organize and store lots of content with new content “pushing down” older content. Oodles of articles can be added over time without crowding the primary navigation of the website.
The articles provide fodder for the search engines, useful information for your potential customers and clients.
By planning ahead and including a blog in your website – or adding one to your existing website – you can avoid suffering through growing pains of your own.