Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
1
Rick Allen
@epublishmedia
Beyond SEO: 

Writing Findable Content
HighEdWeb 2016
#heweb16

October 17, 2016
Hi, I’m Rick.
2
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
Hi, I’m Rick. And I hate
looking for things on the
web.
3
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
4
5
I can’t find it.
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
6
How did I get here? 

What is this page about?
7
Findability is the
biggest content
problem in
higher ed.
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
8
Low
45%
Medium
42%
High
13%
Higher Ed Findability Scorecard
22

.edu websites

75,000+
webpages
Findability impacts
people's ability to easily
understand and find

web content.
People won't use your Web
site if they can't find their
way around.“
10
Steve Krug
Author, Don’t Make Me Think
#heweb16 • @...
Why SEO is important
and why it’s not enough
Search engine optimization (SEO)
is the practice of increasing the
quantity and quality of traffic to
your website through o...
13
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
14
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
HOMEPAGE
15
16
Our content is more than a destination…
17
…it’s a helping hand
Search Optimization for People 

#SOPnotSEO
How people find stuff.
20
Navigate or search?
21
Look around or 

ask for help?
22
How may I help you?
“How do I sign up for a meal plan?” SEARCH
23
“Maybe financial aid is under Plumbing”?
24
25
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
26
Is this the right page?
Where do I go from here?
I give up…
Context Search
Browsing Wayfinding
Elements of Findability
A note about UX and IA…
29 https://www.flickr.com/photos/lakelandlocal/
Impact from the bottom up
Improve findability 

here.
Context Search
Browsing Wayfinding
Content is made relevant
by the context in which
it’s perceived.
33
Photo Credit: Photo by Ed Yourdon
34
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
35
Find out more about what?

How do these links relate?
36
Content appears irrelevant when…
it seems out-of-place

it lacks clear purpose 

or a clear audience
#heweb16 • @epubli...
37
38
“An unmatched faculty…”

“…BOOTH ONLINE STORE.”
39
40
Old date = 

irrelevant content?
41
42
43
To help establish context, consider:
• How does this page support or enhance
related web content?

• Where will people ...
Context Search
Browsing Wayfinding
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
#SOPnotSEO
45
46
Search optimization
needs to be part of the
writing process—not a
post-launch fix.
48
Sources: https://flic.kr/p/8X7JTF https://flic.kr/p/29rzrg
49
Search optimization guidelines 

for content contributors:
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
50
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
1. Publish relevant content
51
2. Make every page on your website unique
52
3. Make every meta webpage title, alt text,
and meta description on your site unique.
53
Clear
Unclear
4. Use relevant and accurate keywords
54
Helpful internal & 

external resources
5. Link to relevant websites that provide 

value to your users.
55
6. Structure content to enhance 

keyword relevance
56
6. Structure content to enhance 

keyword relevance
Clear and distinct 

secondary headers
Context Search
Browsing Wayfinding
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
“It’s on the website.”
58
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
59
“The info is at the top 

of the page.”
“I’ve already been on this
page. I don’t see it.”
Sigh.
60
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
61
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
62
63
Scanning elements are
your “introduction.” This
is where we need to
communicate purpose
and relevance.
65
• “Click here”

• “Website”

• “Homepage”

• “Download”
Non-descriptive link text:
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
66
Click here to download.
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
74
75
Content elements that 

enhance browsing and scanning:
• headers

• links

• highlighted text

• bulleted and numbered ...
…but not too much.
76
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
Context Search
Browsing Wayfinding
#heweb16 • @epublishmedia
78
Museum Wayfinding and Signage company based in London UK
79
Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG
“I hope someone reads this
webpage and then leaves our site
and forgets about it.”
- s...
80
Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG
“I hope this website only has a
limited amount of information on 

the topic I'm inter...
81
82
83
84
85
86
87
88
Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG
“Next steps” to help you 

on you way.
89
Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG
“Next steps” to help you 

on you way.
Findability is customer service
91
Photo Credit: Photo by Ed Yourdon
92
Source: https://flic.kr/p/6WWWx2
Findability is thinking
beyond the content on
the page to consider how
people experience that
content.
94
How can I help?
Rick Allen
Content Strategist

ePublish Media, Inc.
Meet Content LLC
rick@meetcontent.com
Thanks!
#heweb16 • @epublishmedi...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Beyond SEO: Writing Findable Content

199 views

Published on

"I can't find it." Yep, I hear that one too. In fact, it's the most common complaint I hear from students, faculty, and staff about their university website. I also hear them ask: "Where am I?" "Is this for me?" "Where do I go from here?" These questions are symptoms of poor findability—and we need to answer them. No page on our website should feel like a dead end. Institutions that take action often responded to these problems with a redesigned website or new information architecture, but what about the content we create? Beyond SEO, how can we effectively guide web users toward their destination—as well as enable their discovery of useful, relevant content? It starts with a content strategy and continues by educating content contributors about findability and navigation.

Published in: Education
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

Beyond SEO: Writing Findable Content

  1. 1. 1 Rick Allen @epublishmedia Beyond SEO: 
 Writing Findable Content HighEdWeb 2016 #heweb16
 October 17, 2016
  2. 2. Hi, I’m Rick. 2 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  3. 3. Hi, I’m Rick. And I hate looking for things on the web. 3 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  4. 4. 4
  5. 5. 5 I can’t find it. #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  6. 6. 6 How did I get here? 
 What is this page about?
  7. 7. 7 Findability is the biggest content problem in higher ed. #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  8. 8. 8 Low 45% Medium 42% High 13% Higher Ed Findability Scorecard 22
 .edu websites 75,000+ webpages
  9. 9. Findability impacts people's ability to easily understand and find
 web content.
  10. 10. People won't use your Web site if they can't find their way around.“ 10 Steve Krug Author, Don’t Make Me Think #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  11. 11. Why SEO is important and why it’s not enough
  12. 12. Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results. “ 12 Moz, Inc. https://moz.com/learn/seo/what-is-seo #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  13. 13. 13 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  14. 14. 14 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  15. 15. HOMEPAGE 15
  16. 16. 16 Our content is more than a destination…
  17. 17. 17 …it’s a helping hand
  18. 18. Search Optimization for People #SOPnotSEO
  19. 19. How people find stuff.
  20. 20. 20 Navigate or search?
  21. 21. 21 Look around or 
 ask for help?
  22. 22. 22 How may I help you? “How do I sign up for a meal plan?” SEARCH
  23. 23. 23 “Maybe financial aid is under Plumbing”?
  24. 24. 24
  25. 25. 25 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  26. 26. 26 Is this the right page? Where do I go from here? I give up…
  27. 27. Context Search Browsing Wayfinding Elements of Findability
  28. 28. A note about UX and IA…
  29. 29. 29 https://www.flickr.com/photos/lakelandlocal/
  30. 30. Impact from the bottom up Improve findability 
 here.
  31. 31. Context Search Browsing Wayfinding
  32. 32. Content is made relevant by the context in which it’s perceived.
  33. 33. 33 Photo Credit: Photo by Ed Yourdon
  34. 34. 34 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  35. 35. 35 Find out more about what?
 How do these links relate?
  36. 36. 36 Content appears irrelevant when… it seems out-of-place it lacks clear purpose 
 or a clear audience #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  37. 37. 37
  38. 38. 38 “An unmatched faculty…”
 “…BOOTH ONLINE STORE.”
  39. 39. 39
  40. 40. 40 Old date = 
 irrelevant content?
  41. 41. 41
  42. 42. 42
  43. 43. 43 To help establish context, consider: • How does this page support or enhance related web content? • Where will people interact with this content? • How will people use this content? • What content type will be most relevant and useful for the user? #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  44. 44. Context Search Browsing Wayfinding #heweb16 • @epublishmedia #SOPnotSEO
  45. 45. 45
  46. 46. 46
  47. 47. Search optimization needs to be part of the writing process—not a post-launch fix.
  48. 48. 48 Sources: https://flic.kr/p/8X7JTF https://flic.kr/p/29rzrg
  49. 49. 49 Search optimization guidelines 
 for content contributors: #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  50. 50. 50 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia 1. Publish relevant content
  51. 51. 51 2. Make every page on your website unique
  52. 52. 52 3. Make every meta webpage title, alt text, and meta description on your site unique.
  53. 53. 53 Clear Unclear 4. Use relevant and accurate keywords
  54. 54. 54 Helpful internal & 
 external resources 5. Link to relevant websites that provide 
 value to your users.
  55. 55. 55 6. Structure content to enhance 
 keyword relevance
  56. 56. 56 6. Structure content to enhance 
 keyword relevance Clear and distinct 
 secondary headers
  57. 57. Context Search Browsing Wayfinding #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  58. 58. “It’s on the website.” 58 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  59. 59. 59 “The info is at the top 
 of the page.” “I’ve already been on this page. I don’t see it.”
  60. 60. Sigh. 60 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  61. 61. 61 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  62. 62. 62
  63. 63. 63
  64. 64. Scanning elements are your “introduction.” This is where we need to communicate purpose and relevance.
  65. 65. 65 • “Click here” • “Website” • “Homepage” • “Download” Non-descriptive link text: #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  66. 66. 66 Click here to download. #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  67. 67. 67
  68. 68. 68
  69. 69. 69
  70. 70. 70
  71. 71. 71
  72. 72. 72
  73. 73. 73
  74. 74. 74
  75. 75. 75 Content elements that 
 enhance browsing and scanning: • headers • links • highlighted text • bulleted and numbered lists • photos and graphics • captions • pull-quotes #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  76. 76. …but not too much. 76 #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  77. 77. Context Search Browsing Wayfinding #heweb16 • @epublishmedia
  78. 78. 78 Museum Wayfinding and Signage company based in London UK
  79. 79. 79 Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG “I hope someone reads this webpage and then leaves our site and forgets about it.” - said no author ever
  80. 80. 80 Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG “I hope this website only has a limited amount of information on 
 the topic I'm interested in.” - said no web user ever
  81. 81. 81
  82. 82. 82
  83. 83. 83
  84. 84. 84
  85. 85. 85
  86. 86. 86
  87. 87. 87
  88. 88. 88 Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG “Next steps” to help you 
 on you way.
  89. 89. 89 Source: https://flic.kr/p/8SZvsG “Next steps” to help you 
 on you way.
  90. 90. Findability is customer service
  91. 91. 91 Photo Credit: Photo by Ed Yourdon
  92. 92. 92 Source: https://flic.kr/p/6WWWx2
  93. 93. Findability is thinking beyond the content on the page to consider how people experience that content.
  94. 94. 94 How can I help?
  95. 95. Rick Allen Content Strategist ePublish Media, Inc. Meet Content LLC rick@meetcontent.com Thanks! #heweb16 • @epublishmedia (I hope this was helpful)

×