Part 1: What Happens When UX, SEO & Content Teams Converge?
Exponential results are what happens when these teams synchronize and collaborate. They create remarkable user experiences and exceptional client satisfaction. And ultimately, a website that can sky rocket in engagement and ranking.
When UX, SEO and Content teams work together, they amplify their abilities and gain a multidimensional understanding of their clients’ needs. Bluespire experts take a client-centric approach every day to successfully implement user-centric strategies. In parts 1 and 2 of this series, our UX, SEO and Content experts share their perspectives on the hyper-collaborative working experience at Bluespire.
What Are Your Mutual Goals?
UX: To create a digital experience that makes it easy for users to gain access to the content they desire, in a seamless and intuitive way. A lot of the web content we create is informational or educational, so we start by answering the user’s key questions. We always strive to give users clear first and next steps — ways to engage deeper with relevant content or brand experience.
SEO Strategist: Our common goals are to ensure that users are able to find the information they need easily, and that the information meets their needs.
Content Strategist: To give the user the best online experience possible — providing them with clear, relevant, personalized content they can easily access and understand. Or with actions that help them accomplish what they seek to do.
What Does the Hyper-Collaborative Process Look Like for Clients?
UX: We always start by identifying the business problem or goal we’re trying to solve. For example, if we’re creating a campaign landing page, and the goal is to drive hard conversions, our approach is going to be different than if we were creating a series of long-form blog posts that are intended to drive engagement. Some clients have clear business goals. Other clients look to us to help translate their goals into the right prescription for execution. In either case, the dialogue is critical to the success of the project.
Involving the client in the design process, particularly when the problem we’re trying to solve is complex or involves a multipronged strategy, means we get client feedback early and often, with regular check-ins to ensure that we’re aligned as a team. We work and craft recommendations in a high velocity, iterative fashion whenever possible. Like everything we do at Bluespire, we implement an agile approach to collaboration.
SEO Strategist: It starts with the client. They identify an area or service line of focus such as differentiating their brand or driving ROI in Senior Living or improving patient or customer/member acquisition Healthcare or Finance. When we begin to work through an audit for content, UX and SEO — whether it’s for an entire site, a section of a site, a set of pages or a page — we start by assessing the current state of the information. We may present the client with a recommended information architecture to improve a sites usability. We will go through each page and audit the content and SEO, providing recommendations to optimize the pages. Sometimes, we work through the entire process, from gathering all of the current site’s information (information architecture, content and SEO) to creating a new IA and providing new content and SEO recommendations.
Content Strategist: The client needs to let us know their goals for the digital properties we are auditing — do you want engagement, conversion, authority, etc. From there we take it and sprint — UX leads with the information architecture and runs it by SEO and Content Strategy for feedback and approval. SEO and Content Strategy then work in tandem to make content recommendations. Once all our work is complete, we meet and work collectively to ensure all 3 disciplines are aligned to client objectives. It is a highly collaborative process.
What Challenges Would You Face Working Independently Versus Holistically?
UX: Most of the digital properties we build (and the campaigns we run) are content-focused. The content is the user experience. As a UX designer, it’s important to be able to think like a content strategist, and think like an SEO expert, but there’s no substitute to working hand-in-hand with experts. There’s also a lot to be said for diversity of thought, and thought partnership. It’s extraordinary to work under one roof, and be able to bounce ideas off of one another and work through challenging problems together.
SEO Strategist: A remarkable user experience lays the groundwork for an entire site, and is becoming an increasingly important SEO factor as well. If I did my work without input or direction from a UX designer, I might end up with recommendations that satisfy a search engine, but may not necessarily make the most sense for a user. Likewise with content strategy — which really brings empathy and humanity into writing and goes far beyond keywords and search engines.
Content Strategist: SEO is very technical. While our writers have a solid understanding of SEO fundamentals, a strategist looks for different things, and their perspective opens up possibilities — a new page, a better page title, reformatting content. The UX perspective challenges some of content strategy. It forces me to defend my thinking or change it. Often the user is simply there to “do a job” and sometimes that job is reading incredibly informative content.
When you engage a team, you benefit not only from the unique expertise that each member brings, but from the way that collaboration forces active engagement. We drive each other to answer thorny questions, consider new approaches.
Often, as we present a strategic approach the client will say “What if…” and we say, “Actually, we already considered that and here is where we landed.” Working in a vacuum, even with years of expertise under your belt, cannot replace the value of discourse.
The value to our clients is knowing that all these disciplines are aligned around their goals. It also creates an environment where complex problem solving and innovation get nurtured.
Collaboration allows us to align and meet (and exceed) our clients expectations and objectives. Hyper-collaboration allows us to innovate. Connect with Bluespire today and find out how our experts can help you deliver remarkable customer experiences and achieve your marketing goals.