Pat yourself on the back. You’ve committed to redesigning your brand new beautiful website come January. 2023 is your year. You’ve taken the first step towards enhancing your website and ultimately creating more leads and revenue for your business. So how can you hit the ground running come New Year’s Day? As with anything worth putting effort into, pre-planning is essential and there’s a few things that your web agency will come knocking for. So prepare to prepare.
In general a web project is a big undertaking and one in which the client needs to be involved in throughout the entire process – it is a digital partnership we’re aiming for after all! So here are the key elements that you must identify before starting into a project:
Current website experience pain points –
Think about your current website, are you cringing? What is it that you take issue with? In other words, what do you hate about your website? There could be designs or technical aspects that are not working. Think of the navigation, is it intuitive? It’s common to have an overwhelming amount of links to choose from, or not enough calls to action. We’ve said it before and we will say it again: if you don’t know the journey your viewer will take, then neither will they.
Top-level business goals –
What is success to you? Is the sole purpose of your business website to create leads or is it mainly for awareness and online presence? If your KPIs are indicating a lack along the way, then note that down. Something is going array and it could potentially be fixed within the design.
Or maybe your website is primarily there to support your brand. In that case, from a PR perspective, are you communicating everything you need to? Do the visuals and tone of voice represent your corporate values and brand personality? Sites can age quickly, so if you feel that your site and branding could do with a refresh, this is the perfect time to do it and at Kooba, we do it well. Two birds, one site.
Keep your goal front of mind and work backwards. How can your website be designed to assist your values? Make your digital presence work for you. It’s not just about looking good– your website needs to be effective too.
If you’re dealing with sensitive information, or housing data in general, of course you want to ensure that site is fully secure. GDPR also needs to be considered as regulations are often updated. Being transparent in your design can really help with navigating the privacy laws that are in action. Best to stay ahead of the curve here, as GDPR is here to stay.
Target Audience -
A vital piece of information to supply your web designers with is that of your target audience. Hopefully by now you have a clear and specific idea of which demographic you’re targeting. Rather than starting with content that you want to give, think more on what is the content that this audience wants to receive.
Some companies have multiple target audiences so it is so useful for our designers to know this upfront. If your customer base consists of consumers and businesses, they can absolutely both be catered to within one website (see our creative solution to this problem for Screen Ireland). But a strategy will need to be put in place to streamline communications with both groups. The last thing you want to do is create a site without providing the information your viewer is looking for.
Technical requirements –
It’s okay to have a website exist to be entirely functional. If you need a place to manage form submissions or host a log-in area, this is essential information for our designers to know. Do you need a booking system? Third-party financial transactions? Or even if your CRM needs an overhaul to be able to fully manage it yourself rather than having to contact a developer – let us know as early in the process as possible.
Arguably the most important part of the redesign, what is it that you want to communicate? And do you have it polished, optimised and ready to go? Perhaps you want to use content from your previous website. But if you need a refresh or additional copy and visuals then get going on this now. Having a content strategy should be a part of your marketing mix but consider doing a content audit too. Knowing what content is generating leads is so important for your future asset creation.
So once you’ve seen the warning signs that it is time to redesign your website, and you’ve enlisted the help of a web agency, you need to begin your homework. While the website is being designed and developed you need to be simultaneously producing the content that will hold it together. There’s no point in a beautiful, flashy, fast website going live without your copy and visuals being generated. Furthermore your content will actually inform the design in most cases, so in an ideal world this would be done even before the technical work begins. Don’t forget that time is the secret ingredient of creating a successful website.
There’s a bit of prep and thinking to do before your website project kicks off. The question “what is success for you/your business?” is key and from here we can find the right solution to achieve this digitally. Get in touch with us today and we can guide you through the process.