I was wrong.
I used to believe website/blog design took the cake in matters of marketing significance. Not anymore. Important? Yes. But in a second-tier kind of way.
After the past few months checking out different blogs with notable traffic, I discovered some of the busiest to be the most bland. No flair. Boring color scheme. Simple graphics. Single or two-column layout. So what’s the fuss all about?
CONTENT. A handful of posts on a few of these high-traffic sites blew me away. And consistently so, the more I read. Post after powerful post, with fresh, timely, and deeply insightful information. Exactly what I was looking for.
Take Seth Godin, for starters. At first glance I wouldn’t have guessed his blog to be ranked as one of the most trafficked. Nothing about his site aesthetically drew me. It’s clean, but simple. Void of the pictures and graphics I normally look for. But his posts? Wow. Most are ripe with keen insight, astute market perspectives, challenging maxims. And (very important!) he keeps them short. Now I understand all the fuss.
My conclusion is what so many have said before me: CONTENT drives traffic far more than COLOR. Color may entice someone to stop by once. Or twice. Content keeps them coming back again and again.
Think of it this way: if I want to take a ski trip to the mountains, I won’t book a chateau in Nebraska. Even it is has clean sheets, a free breakfast and a great view of the neighbor’s corn field. If I want to enjoy the sound of the ocean and the feel of white sand between my toes, a 5-star inland hotel in Mexico City isn’t going to cut it. Regardless of the marble floors and authentic local artwork.
Like every other consumer out there, I want what I want. And I’ll go to the place that gives it to me.
Funny, but it seems to me we spend more creative energy on the external package than the quality of the internal delivery. Like choosing a favorite football team because you like the uniform.
And I’m not just talking about blogs anymore.
How true the post is. I used to go to 10-15 blogs a day, now only 3-4 a day. Because these have content.
I wanted to absorb the life in them.
Absorption is good for my soul.
Well, thank you for visiting mine, Heidi. It’s so good to share life with you. 🙂
i want MY contents (my heart) to be worth coming back for.
Oh but some of us who do have traffic… have no one to make it look fancy and fun like yours. hahaha! I told carlos… her site looks so much like yours I am so jealous! I love your site. Look and content. 🙂
Hey will you email me Ken’s email. I need to plan our trip to CO! H
whittakerwoman — thats a compliment as your site looks great too. Nice pictures. Not sure if you are a writer, a Mom with a blog or a photographer but Michele seems to be in good company.
thanks, H! glad you like it … and even better that we get to hang out together on our blogs. Lovin’ yours … feels like I’m sitting right next to you. Keep it up!