I spend a lot of my time auditing brand and retailer websites, evaluating their content within category-level customer shopping missions.

One of the most consistent things that I find, is that they don’t give their customers good access to their content across their shopping journey.

In this context, I’m talking about content that is product-focussed. Content that is helping customers understand and shop the range; for example buying guides, or editorial and lifestyle content and blog features.

These content types can be expensive to be produce compared to standard product content, and whilst their strategic rationale can often be to drive natural search traffic, they also have a valuable role to play in engagement, product positioning and range navigation.

The main problem is that the content is generally placed outside of the natural customer journey, which means customers don’t have visibility or access to content across the full range of their shopping journeys.

The links between content and the customer journey are often broken, or work in a single direction only.  For example, content which features products or product categories don’t always link directly to those categories and featured products.

Of course that’s not alway the case, but often when they do link, the link is one way. For example if a product is featured in a blog post or editorial feature, the blog will link to the product display page, but the product display page doesn’t link back to the blog. So the shopper who comes to the product page, via other means than the content, will never know that product has been featured in an article somewhere.

Focussing on maximising content access will improve value from content to both the customer and the retailer. Building greater access to content will also increase the number of data points that you can use to learn more about the role of your content in the customer journey.

This data will also help you optimise content effectiveness and learn more about which content formats have the biggest commercial impact, so you can produce better content.

For more information about how we evaluate content access across customer journeys, please contact us at contentqueenuk@gmail.com