Have you ever stopped to ask the question “what am I / my business trying to achieve from our web site?”.
Don’t be surprised if you can’t answer this question straight away!
In the late 90’s, through the 00’s and even today, many businesses and organisations were told they needed a web site but never really stopped to think why (and more importantly what it could do for their business).
This has led to million of web sites being published with no clear message and no clear objective.
I also think that this problem has been perpetuated as many web sites are designed by graphic designers or more technical focused people who are very must focused on making the design look good and / or the technical infrastructure that makes the site work!
Both are very important but it does not help meet the objectives of your business.
So it is important when building a new web site (or reviewing and existing web site) that you ensure that suitable time is committed to defining the objectives of the web site (what will you as a business consider as success).
I would recommend keep it simple and less is more. You should be able to clearly articulate the objectives. It is a good idea to right them down.
Examples of real objectives for your web site will normally fall into 3 general catergories:
Allow potential clients to understand what your business does, location, opening hours, etc.
Provide information to potential clients to prompt them to engage with your business i.e. place a call, book a meeting, request more information, join mailing list, etc.
Provide information to potential clients to allow them to make a buying decision and place a transaction through your web site.
Obviously this is only covers the objectives in a very high level and over the coming months I want to unpack some of these topics in more detail.
So lets take one example. You may own a kitchen fitting company. Therefore, the objectives of your web site could be:
- Provide examples of your work (credibility)
- Prompt potential clients to contact you for an estimate
A kitchen sale is a big transaction so it is very unlikely a client will place an order through a web site without meeting you face to face. Therefore, it is sensible that your objectives are to make you stand out from the other kitchen designers causing the required action of the potential client to phone or e-mail you to book a free estimate.
With this objective clear in your mind, you then can maximise the design of your web site to achieve the required objectives. This means that your business web site has a clear purpose and you should gain an increase in business.
Over the coming months I will develop these themes further. In the meantime you may be interested in the free resources on my web site for planning and designing your web site. Simply join our web site by following this link and completing the simple form Free Web Site Design Guide.
Digital Ark is very focused on helping businesses and organisations to use their web site and online marketing to achieve real business objectives. If you would like to know more, please drop me a line firstname.lastname@example.org.