Do you want your intranet to be successful?
Of course! Who doesn't?
There are several things you can do to help set your organization up for intranet success. Picture two halves of a successful intranet: the platform and the content. The platform itself should be well-designed, secure, and reliable. The technical side of an intranet, however, only accounts for half of the equation. The other component is not directly tied to the technology of the intranet: the content. You can expend significant amounts of time and money on the perfect platform, but without engaging content, users have no reason to visit the site.
An intranet with no users is a valuable tool gone to waste. You want an intranet people will use! Create engaging content for your intranet, so users look forward to visiting it long after the shine wears off.
Here are four tips for creating engaging intranet content.
1. Have a purpose.
Being able to understand what an article is about at a glance makes readers happy. Grab your users' attention and keep them interested in your post with a clear, specific purpose. When people see a rambling or scattered post, most will struggle to read it or not even bother to finish it. However, when users can easily identify and relate to the purpose of an article, they are more likely to connect. If you engage readers with intentional content, they are more inclined to read, comment on, and share it. Make sure the content you publish on your intranet has a distinct, easy-to-grasp purpose.
2. Vary the types of content your publish.
Publishing the same kind of content over and over again is a surefire way to bore your users and decrease engagement. Don't just post variations on the same topic; mix things up to keep users curious and interested. Publishing the same type of article each day causes it to lose its luster. If users feel like they have read an article before, why would they read it again? And again? And again? (You're already tired of reading that phrase after a few times.)
Instead, give your content some variance! If users encounter something new and unique, they are far more likely to look at it more closely. Don't be afraid to think outside the box. The more varied and interesting the content, the better. Incorporate things like images, videos, and graphics. Change up the format of your articles. Provide workplace tips, showcase something unique about your company, highlight accomplishments of specific departments or employees. Feel free to try things like polls and surveys to learn what types and formats of content interest your readers.
3. Give your content a clean structure.
The way your content looks at first glance plays a significant role in a visitor's decision to read on. If the fonts, colors, and formatting are inconsistent or distracting, readers will likely move on. Make sure the overall appearance of your intranet content is clean, modern, and user-friendly. It's best to have an intranet platform that already accomplishes these things, but if yours does not, there are still things you can do to help. Keep your sentences and paragraphs relatively short. Use plenty of space between blocks of content. Avoid abrasive things like SHOUTY CAPITALS, scary text colors, and distracting font choices.
If something initially looks low-quality or too unusual, most people will outright skip over it. It doesn't matter how great your written content is if people don't take the time to read it. Make a good impression by making your content look polished and professional.
4. Don't overwhelm your readers.
Be clear and concise. I'm not saying you should truncate your content. Just make sure that it doesn't drag your readers along a long, winding path. Tell a story, but make your point. Simplify complicated language, cut out technical jargon, and shorten lengthy sentences. The easier your content is to read, the more likely people are to read it.
Keep it light and skimmable. Avoid walls of text. Nothing pulls readers out of what they're reading like a dense block of black on white. Make sure your readers can understand the meaning of your content at a glance, then draw them in with more detail as they read further.
Why should you care if your intranet content engages employees? Check out our white paper, Importance of Employee Engagement, to learn about how engagement impacts organizations.