Stay ahead of your content updates

Make sure your web content stays relevant, accurate and current by planning your updates ahead of time!

Think of these content strategy best practices as standard operating producers for continuous improvement of your web presence.

Collect Feedback

Create a mechanism where colleagues can send you page updates, feedback and ideas. Similarly, work with colleagues and student audience to record feedback about your pages: what’s working and what’s not working. How well is the page performing in internal and external search results? Then, work with your department to prioritize those concerns. You may decide to introduce new multimedia content (ie videos, social media stream) or restructure the page to focus on a particular initiative or activity.

Review Analytics

Are users visiting your landing pages? How long are they staying on the page? Request an analytics report to understand the page views, average time on page, entrances, exit percentage, and traffic sources for pages managed by your department. Then, compare the analytics report with CCBC’s overall website key performance indicators to set new performance goals for your pages.

Audit content

At least once a year, assess the freshness, validity, accessibility and accuracy of your department’s content. If the content is for students, audit the content in the summer before the start of the new academic year. If the content is for a fundraiser, audit the content before the launch of the next fundraising campaign. During the audit, (1) proofread the content, (2) test your links and calls to action, and (3) validate the contact information. Is the information still relevant?

Develop a Content Calendar

Having a well laid out plan, such as a content calendar, is essential to ensure that your content updates are posted on time. We know planning your content ahead of time sounds like a big commitment at first, but you can rest assured it will save you time and frustration in the end and you’ll enjoy the peace of mind knowing that all your content updates will be published on time.

Think of content strategy as a cooking recipe for your favorite dish. You could try to go from memory, but why risk it.

What is a content calendar?

Often, we have reoccurring tasks for a project or event. A content calendar (aka editorial calendar) allows us to organize all those tasks in chronological order so we're less likely to forget something (or miss a step).

If a contributor is out sick or leaves the college, a content calendar would help another contributor, or the content owner quickly get up to speed.

Your calendar should be shareable so that your team and other departments can use this tool to plan and coordinate all content activity.

Why is this important?

Producing compelling and sustainable content requires routine maintenance. Content is never finished. It must be audited and updated every few months maybe even every few weeks.

If you’re disorganized with your content production schedule, you’ll forget things, publish less often, or neglect a step that worked well last year. Put another way: a content calendar ensures that nothing falls between the cracks.

What content should be included in your calendar?

There are different types of content that should be included in your content calendar. These types of content include pages, PDFs, images, forms, search engine optimization and videos. Example: Academic departments should update their keywords and page descriptions before each academic year.

How to create a content calendar

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry! The Web Team has created a content calendar template to help you organize your web requests and updates.

  1. Download a template to help you create your content calendar. They are available in two sizes:
  2. Complete the template. Use the template as a guide, however you can adjust to suit your department's needs. For example, we organize the calendar by month, but you can group differently, such as quarterly or bi-monthly. The sky is the limit!
  3. Print your content calendar and check off as you make the content updates in Sitecore.
  4. Share your completed content template with others on your team, and the Web Team.

Remember, web publishing is not instantaneous. When creating your plan, make sure it accounts for the processing time needed for publishing.

For example, if you have program data that needs to be updated once a year, in your content calendar, allow enough time to account for the 2-3 days approval time.

Use the below chart to help you plan when to submit your updates to the Web Team.

Estimated Completion Time

Services Trained Web Content Contributors & Owners All Other Departments
Update existing page 2-3 business days 1-2 weeks
Add new event up to 5 business days up to 5 business days