Gerry McGovern’s top 10 predictions for 2005 concerning web content management.
1. The editorâ€”the person who knows the difference between good and bad contentâ€”will get increasing authority for the website.
2. Websites will get smaller, as editors begin to get rid of the large quantities of out-of-date content that have built up over the years.
3. Websites will get simpler as complexity is hidden, and a set of straightforward choices are presented to the impatient scan reader.
4. Senior management will get more involved in developing web strategy.
5. Some hard questions will be asked as to the value websites are delivering in relation to the money that is being spent on them.
6. The importance of writing quality web content will be recognized, but the people who write quality web content will still not get due reward.
7. As the attention span shortens, so too will content. It will become more and more difficult to get anyone to read anything over 500 words.
8. As the need to get people to the right content as quickly as possible increases, the importance of writing quality metadata will grow.
9. Website design will continue to standardize. As websites focus more on navigation, the principle of reducing uncertainty and increasing familiarity will become more important.
10. Things won’t change dramatically in 2005. The Web has begun to mature, and certainly when it comes to text-based content, it will be about getting the basics right.
I’ve always been told since I began developing on the web that content is king. I still see many websites trying to dazzle the visitor instead of providing the information users are looking for in a quick and easy to find manner. I especially like prediction number 7, this is where RSS content syndication comes in. If your company’s business is to provide information in a timely manner you better find a way to feed it to your customers quickly.
Don’t even think about delivering information via email. With the amount of spam people receive everyday you will be lucky to get your legitimate newsletter delivered and read by your customers. I’m not saying that email is a thing of the past but progressive companies are finding new ways to deliver content and information.
Robert Scoble often asks bloggers to be more descriptive in their article titles and headlines. Users are overloaded with information so writing compelling content will draw in the user and not so much fancy design.
The new year looks to be an exciting year in web development with many new technologies emerging but don’t forget that content is king.