A trip to the apple orchard this past weekend led to rows of trees available for picking. Fallen apples lay scattered across the ground; low branches held a few ripe pieces in easy reach. This season, the website content is in a similar situation. Fallen apples represent the bushels of content that need to be cleaned up. The low hanging fruit is a handful of easy tasks to get started on.
If we want our visitors engaged and involved with Extension, then we have to be active too in providing relevant and current resources. If our online content becomes outdated, such as an article with crop statistics from 2002, then potential clients may begin to wonder about our advice. It’s easy enough to update, or leave out, time-dated information if it’s not essential to the article.
Updating your web content maintains trust and loyalty with Extension’s audiences. It also helps search engine optimization and builds the confidence of new visitors about our authority on the topics.
Cleaning the content
A year ago, the majority of archived county and program sites on Drupal 6 sites went away for good. The flurry in putting content on the new website meant some content didn’t get thoroughly reviewed. Others got left in Box unless someone asked for it.
Do you have content that needs a second look? Some of the low hanging tasks could include:
- Look on your groups page, filter by “events” and archive any old events that no longer need to be visible to the public.
- Ask EESC for a spreadsheet that shows all content for your group listed by publication date. Then start reviewing the oldest among them. If you’re unsure it’s worth updating, search around to see if there’s content that is similar or think about how it could be repurposed.
- Look at the the Box files or content in your groups folder marked “draft” to see what could still be reviewed and published.
While you need to look for accuracy and completeness of the content, EESC is contributing to this process too.
- The publishing team is copyediting your published content. Also, they are adding formatting that helps with website readability. They are currently 20% through all the web articles.
- The web and content strategy team is fixing broken links and changing published content to correct content types. This mostly means changing educational documents to more accessible articles.
- The administrative team is tagging catalog publications to improve findability. They are also helping with missing photos or image quality.
You can keep track of what we’re doing by looking at the “Revisions” notes tab of your content when logged in. If there are major changes, then we will email you directly with questions. Learn more in the web guide.
Keeping on top of content’s health is best managed when pruned a little each day over the winter months. Set a maintenance plan, and then come spring your resources will be fresh and ready for new growth. This will make our web visitors very happy.
In case you missed it, last week’s blog post shared what Salesforce looks like to someone using it. This can help you in better understanding how a CRM (customer relationship management system) works.
Thank you to all the Extension program area leaders for sharing your goals with EESC in October. This will help inform our communications and content strategy over the next year. Stay tuned!