Now that you’ve decided to take the plunge, or at least start thinking about your website design / redesign, what are the next steps you should take?
From our experience, there are a number of things that are common to most website projects, whether they are a new build or a website redesign. Below are a number of questions you should ask yourself, to help you get the ball rolling and get best out of your investment.
- The question I usually hate asking, but it’s the most important thing you need to know, is, are you working to a budget or is the website spec the overriding factor?
- This question usually puts people on edge, but the costs involved in developing a site vary massively, depending on the size, complexity and dozens more factors. If you have a rough idea of what you are willing to spend, or at least your maximum, it can speed up the process greatly.
- Who are your customers / visitors?
- It is absolutely vital to know who you want visiting your site. It can really help to create an “Avatar” of your intended visitors, by describing one fictional website viewer in detail, including their job, likes, dislikes etc. This can give you a person to keep in mind while developing your site.
- What is the main purpose of the website? Is it to list and describe your services? Is it to sell your products or services online? Have you a different purpose in mind?
- The purpose of your site and who your customers are will have the biggest effect on the design of the site.
- Do you want to be found via search engines, or will you be sending visitors there via social media, newspaper ad, or telling them in person?
- Again this affects the design of the site. While it can also determine how much you will initially spend, it may just mean that the same money can be used to focus on areas such as SEO, Social Media, Design, Email Marketing etc, depending on your specific priorities.
- What do you want to include in your site?
- This may seem obvious, but you really need to think through what you want to include in your site. A good method involves, on a blank page brain storm and write down everything that comes into your mind when thinking about your site. Well, maybe not everything, but you get the idea!
- How many pages do you want? What are they?
- From the previous brainstorming session, group similar ideas and phrases together and see do they naturally form into individual pages. If your site is a little more complex, it may take a bit of rejigging, but they will fall into place after a few passes through.