Why the content deck?: The content deck comes at a key juncture in the life cycle of an interactive project - it is driven by information design, but will inform creative design. It is a lynchpin for the team, touched by everyone. More importantly, it may be the only complete reference to the site that exists. Wireframes and storyboards are often only produced for key or unique pages, but the content deck will likely include copy for each and every page of the site.
What to incorporate: Beyond actual copy, the content deck should reference and incorporate the following elements:
- Numeration from the information architecture and wireframes - this allows an individual to understand exactly where individual content elements will live within the site and on a given page. Not only will this will help the client greatly during content review, which can be a disjointed experience, it is necessary for the technical team, who will have to populate each website page with the proper copy.
- Multimedia files and server location - most sites include photography and/ or video, and the content deck provides an ideal opportunity to reference which specific media assets should be placed on which screens. Again - the content deck may be the only complete reference you have to the entire site, so it's a simple and easy way to pass this information along to the technical team for the build. But, don't stop at the image or video name - include the location of that file on the server, or on an external social media site, as well, so the team will know where the asset currently lives.
- SEO data - title tags and meta descriptions for individual pages can also live in the content deck. This means the tech team will have a single place to refer to for all this information, instead of disparate documents they'd otherwise have to try and connect to one another.