When I first started as a freelance writer, I didn’t know much outside of content strategy and creation, but I knew that the path of least resistance meant I could complete projects faster and therefore make more.
I therefore took the approach of writing blog posts directly in my clients’ CMS platforms, whether it was WordPress, Shopify, HubSpot, or something else. It seemed to skip the step of uploading it later… but then I realized that my “effective” process was anything but.
I now swear by creating content drafts in Google Docs, and it’s something I strongly recommend that all freelancers, agencies, and even in-house marketers do. Let’s take a look at why you should always use Google Docs for content creation.
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Table of Contents
1. CMS Systems Sometimes Eat Posts
I will never forget the weekend I moved into my house. It was Easter weekend, and I had the hair brained idea to have a huge dinner at my new place. I’d spent all weekend unpacking, and I just had to finish this last post before my guests arrived so I could finally relax.
Ten minutes until the guests arrived, I wrote the last sentence. There was a glitch and the page auto-loaded. For some reason, it hadn’t auto-saved. I lost the entire post I’d spent two and a half hours on, and there was no way to recover it (I had my tech-savvy boyfriend check).
I had to start over after everyone left and I was up until 2AM.
I’m not knocking any tools here, but the reality is that technology sometimes fails.
Sometimes, the issue is that my computer disconnects from the internet and I don’t notice because it still looks like it’s saving on my end. In other times, I’ve seen chronic issues with a single client’s updated software that causes posts to go missing or have their formatting go wonky.
Google Drive isn’t perfect and can have its own glitches. Sometimes I’ll have a comment or two go missing, or my last update isn’t saved. That being said, it’s easily the most reliable platform, and worst case we’re talking a few missing edits compared to an entire missing blog post.
And the best part: I get notified the second there’s an internet connection so I can copy the post into my notes or a Word doc if needed before it crashes.
2. It’s The Best Option for Easy Collaboration
In most cases, content creators are going to be working with other team members.
For freelancers, this means client approval (sometimes with multiple team members involved). Agencies need to work with both freelancers and clients, acting as the middle man voice. And even in-house marketers will likely be getting feedback from product development teams and supervisors.
CMS systems are ineffective for this reason. People have to leave comments in the text itself which sometimes get missed and published, or resort to emailing “That one paragraph, can it be changed” which is time consuming and confusing.
This means that you need to be creating the content in a platform that allows for easy collaboration. Google Docs fits that bill.
Everyone can be commenting on a document in real time. They can suggest edits in comments, or in-text. People can tag each other to ask questions or assign tasks.
You can track all of these changes over time by looking at the different version histories. (You can do this by going to “File” and then finding “Version History.”)
Even a Word doc doesn’t excel with this level of collaboration, because it’s not happening in real time. I used Word documents for awhile, and it got messy, with people getting confused about which versions were current and comments being missed.
3. You Own the Document
This is most relevant to freelancers and agencies, and while hopefully it will never be relevant to you specifically, it can be invaluable.
When you create content in your own original Google Doc, you are the owner. No one can cut off your access and then say that you didn’t submit anything, which they can do with a CMS system.
I only had this happen once, but it did happen. A client was angry I was booked for the rest of the year (which I had warned him about a month in advance) and that I couldn’t complete his project. He removed my access to their CMS, said I’d never turned in a post, and that I owed him another or he’d do a credit card chargeback.
Fortunately, I had the post saved in Google Docs. I’d written it there before uploading, and it showed that he’d been given access three weeks prior and approved it in-doc. I had enough to make sure that he couldn’t withhold or do a chargeback on payments.
And while this person became an ex-client, he had been perfectly wonderful to work with before this event. Having small things in place to protect your business is an excellent call, and this is an easy one.
4. It’s Easy to Export & Upload to Other Platforms
The content has been created, edited, and approved. So now what?
With Google Docs, it’s easy to export it and/or upload it to get it wherever you need the content to go.
You can share it with clients so they can do with it as they wish, or create a PDF or Word doc with just a single click.
You can also use Wordable.io to upload the content (images and all!) with just a few seconds and a few clicks to several CMS platforms, including WordPress, Medium, HubSpot, Shopify, and many more coming soon.
You just need to import your documents from Google, connect to your CMS, and upload it directly. Everything will be formatted correctly, and you can make adjustments like alt text and author name as you go. See how it works here:
Wordable.io is the easiest way to upload your content fast from Google Drive to your CMS. Try it here, with your first 5 exports free.
While no content tool is truly perfectly or immune from tech issues, Google Docs is about as good as it gets. It’s the most likely to be reliable, it keeps you in the driver’s seat, and it makes collaboration, editing, and uploading as easy and efficient as it could possibly be.
I strongly recommend that all content creators write their content drafts in Google Docs before uploading it to their CMS, especially since tools like Wordable.io make the publication process so simple. It’s an easy way to protect your business and your content, all while making sure that the end result is exactly what everyone was hoping to see.
Ready to streamline your content production process with fast and easy uploading? Get started with 5 free exports through Wordable now.