An introduction to content design and how we use it to create GOV.WALES content.
Designing content, not creating copy
Government has a tendency to publish content that is more focused on what it wants to say than what the user needs to know. This makes content difficult to understand and act on.
Good content design allows people to do what they need to do or find the information they need from government simply and quickly. It is based on user behaviour, analytics and feedback.
Content design always starts with user needs
Content design is when we take a user need and present it on GOV.WALES in the best way possible.
User needs are the needs that members of the public, businesses and partners have of Welsh Government.
Before publishing to GOV.WALES, you need to know your users’ needs and design your content around them.
Designing by writing great content
Writing clear content in plain English helps people understand and find the information they need quickly and easily.
We must write so that GOV.WALES is accessible to anybody. Our users have different reading abilities and view GOV.WALES on a range of devices.
Designing to avoid duplication
Content design also involves making sure content can be found on a large site.
Duplicate content produces poor search results, confuses the user and damages the credibility of GOV.WALES. Users end up using offline channels, like calling a helpline, because they are not sure they have the right information.
Content strategy and design
Depending on what your user needs are, you may need to:
- reduce the amount of content you plan to publish
- change the format of the content
- remove content from the site
- publish your content elsewhere, like social media
Applying all of these content design principles mean we do the hard work for the user.
If you have new content for GOV.WALES, contact your web manager or the Corporate Digital Team as early as possible for content design advice.