Content Critical: Gaining Competitive Advantage Through High-Quality Web Content / Edition 1

Paperback (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $1.99
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 94%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (25) from $1.99   
  • New (5) from $26.30   
  • Used (20) from $1.99   


"The term "bible" is now highly over-used in reference to tech books but if it weren't, that's how I would categorize Content Critical."
Rowan Wilson, Knowledge Management Review "This book is highly recommended. It belongs in every design library. It should be on the reading list of every course in Web design. Any Web designer who plans to be in business five years from now should read this book." Design Research News, J an 2002

In the age of information overload and content glut, how do you get people to read what¿s on your website?

The modern world runs on content. And the Web is fast becoming the medium of choice for content delivery. Increasingly business is about getting the right content to the right person at the right time ¿ and making a profit out of it. Content is critical. Content Critical will change the way you think about the Web. If part of your job involves writing original content to be placed on the Web ¿ product support material, a marketing pitch, or internal communication ¿ you¿re part of a publishing process. Think of your website as a publication and it all begins to make a lot of sense. Think of the person who visits your website as a reader and your objectives become clearer. Content Critical explains the theory and practice of producing reader-focussed, compelling content. It includes highly detailed, practical advice about what it takes to build a professional, content-oriented website, including classification, navigation, search and content layout. It shows you how to organize a publishing team and how to create a web publishing strategy.Discover what high-quality content really is, and learn how to create it.Content Critical will help you:

  • discover the key skills required to write compelling content for the Web
  • understand the rules of publishing content online
  • know how to appeal to your online readers
  • develop an effective Internet communications strategy
  • build publishing skills within your organization.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Content Critical is highly recommended. It belongs in every design library. It should be on the reading list of every course in Web design. Any Web designer who plans to be in business five years from now should read this book."

Ken Friedman, Design Research News

"Content Critical is amply provided with reality checks, examples, and practical ideas and suggestions ... The authors have succeeded in writing a book that will appeal to both beginners and experts."

Geert Jan Kraan, Net Professional magazine

"Content Critical is another good example of a book that can make a difference. The book is well written and full of useful insights on web publishing. And, as such, the book is a very useful tool for everybody who is in charge of a commercial website."

Gert Birnbacher, chairman of DEBA, Scandinavia's largest network of e-business companies

"Content Critical is the best non-technical book on the subject of web content that I have come across to date ... For those interested in the 'change management' dimension of content and knowledge management, Content Critical may well become the standard text."

Andy Harrisson, Content Management Focus magazine

"Content Critical is an excellent book for academics and practitioners alike ... It should be read by anyone involved in Web content management, of course, but it should also be required reading for those with responsibilities including internal or external communication (and what academic or executive does not?)"

Colin Jevons, Journal of Consumer Marketing

"The term "bible" is now highly over-used in reference to tech books but if it weren't, that's how I would categorize Content Critical."

Rowan Wilson, Knowledge Management Review

"In this wonderfully straightforward book, Gerry McGovern and Rob Norton show why the success of your business depends, more and more, on getting 'the right content to the right person at the right time'."

Jonathan Price, author of Hot Text: Web Writing that Works

"In two books about the Web (Content Critical and The Web Content Style Guide), Gerry McGovern and his co-authors have made the subject as easily understandable as it is disorganized in reality."

Robin Sherman, American Society of Business Publication Editors

"Students and practitioners alike will benefit greatly from Gerry's book and I have made it a core 'must have' text for my undergraduate new media studies courses."

Andy Price, University of Teesside

"I can't think of anyone more clearly focused on the issue of good site content than Gerry McGovern, and I found myself nodding in agreement on every page,"

"For me, it was an important book to read, because, as a copywriter myself, I find the line between 'content' and 'copy' is very hard to discern sometimes. I think it's important for online copywriters to understand the work of content creators, and vice versa."

"Best of all, you get the sense with Content Critical that McGovern has a deep, deep knowledge of the subject. And he writes in a way that makes his knowledge accessible to others. Absolutely THE book on creating and managing content online."

- Nick Usborne, author of Net Words: Creating High-Impact Online Copy

"In this wonderfully straightforward book, Gerry McGovern and Rob Norton show why the success of your business depends, more and more, on getting "the right content to the right person at the right time."

"Their book cuts through the dot com hyperbole to show why your content is critical to profit. On the Web, therefore, we are all becoming publishers."

"With common sense, good humor, and sharp focus, McGovern and Norton give practical step-by-step advice on creating and managing content. I think you'll laugh out loud, as you mark passages to quote to your boss and your team."

- Jonathan Price, author of Hot Text

"Everyone involved in the Web should read this book; it is Tom Paine's Common Sense for a wired world. Buy it now or watch your empire fall."

- Rob Benson, TrainingZONE

"Content Critical does a terrific job of laying out the reasons why content itself must take priority and then, even more importantly, the reader is the number one priority. The book has been of great value in getting this vital rule across to the students."

- Diana Botsford, Director of Information Services, Drury University, USA

"Every serious webmaster, web designer, online editor, web developer or student-in-training will find Content Critical will make them stop and critically think about their web design work. My students are now required to read it."

- Curt Schroeder, University Regina, Canada

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780273656043
  • Publisher: Pearson FT Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/2001
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Gerry McGovern is a content management consultant and author. He has spoken and written extensively on Internet issues over the last seven years. He is advisory editor for BOSS (Bloomsbury) on the subject of ecommerce. (BOSS is a 3 million word plus one-stop reference and interactive tool, embracing all aspects of the world of work.) He writes a column for the popular marketing website,, on the subject of content management and also has his own highly regarded and widely read online newsletter called New Thinking. He is a member of the Financial Times Knowledge Dialogue, a network of thought leaders advising executives on critical business issues. Previously Gerry founded Nua, which became best known for Nua Internet Surveys, a leading resource for information on Internet trends.

Rob Norton

is a freelance journalist in New York City. He is a contributing editor at Business 2.0 magazine, for which he writes the Leading Questions column, as well as news stories and feature articles. He also writes and publishes Net Style, a weekly online newsletter. Rob also does consulting work in journalism, publishing, website design and information architecture.

Previously Rob was Executive Editor at Fortune magazine, where he was a member of the management team that revamped Fortune in 1996. He was responsible for "First," Fortune¿s innovative front of magazine section, and directed Fortune¿s economics coverage. Rob joined Fortune in 1984, and worked for several years in the magazine¿s Washington bureau. He has written several cover stories and dozens of feature stories, and also edited Fortune¿s 70th anniversary issue in February 2000.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Topics that Content Critical explores include:

  • How publishing is a model for content management within organizations
  • How to establish a publishing strategy
  • How to develop a website that reflects publishing best practice
  • Issues relating to metadata, navigation, search, layout and design
  • How to measure the cost and benefit of content
  • How to define the roles and responsibilities within a publishing (content) organization
  • How to encourage collaboratively created content
  • How to motivate people to create high quality content
  • How to write better content for the Web
  • How information overload is impacting on the organization
  • Practical examples of content management strategies and experiences
  • Information on important conferences, events, books, articles, etc., relating to content and knowledge management
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)