Five Things We Need to Know Before Building Your Website
Target audience & website goals
The basic question: what do you want to get out of your new site? Is your aim to provide information on your services? Promote an event? Advertise the launch of a new product? An online store to complement your existing shop? Once we know what goals you’re trying to achieve, it makes the rest of the process a whole lot easier as it guides us towards design elements and functionality that will help you reach those targets.
Identifying your target audience will also help point us in the right direction – for example, a website aimed at millennials will visually be a lot different to a site aimed at a more conservative demographic.
The next step is becoming familiar with your company branding – even the style of your logo will inform the art direction and visual style of your new website in terms of colours, images and UI (“user-interface”) elements.
Another thing which is a big help in pointing our design team in the right direction is being familiar with a few websites that you like the design of, and what it is that appeals to you – whether it’s the colour palette, the large images or typography, this can help us refine the design wireframes and efficiently hone in what design style you’re after … in the same vein, knowing what websites you dislike us helps us know what to avoid!
As mentioned above, being specific about what your website to achieve is a big step in the right direction in delivering a site that you love, and letting us know what features you are after feeds into this. If you feel uncomfortable with technical jargon, that’s totally okay – we’re here to translate your ideas and goals and find functionality that fits into those.
For example, are you looking to communicate with existing customers and inform them of promotions? A newsletter subscription option could be the answer. Or, do you own a holiday cottage and want people to be able to book easily online? A reservation calendar and payment gateway can achieve this. We will work together with you to determine what features and functionality you need, and integrate these into the project plan and visual design from the beginning.
This is something that is often overlooked until the site is almost complete, but it is important to think about your website content right from the beginning. Not only can your content help inform the design, especially for the homepage, it is helpful for us to know if you require copywriting services and stock photography so that this can be included in the project plan to give you clear and accurate delivery timelines. Or, maybe you want to write your own text, or need your existing website content brought over into the new site. Knowing this allows for a much smoother and efficient process to get your site and up running.
Marketing & ongoing maintenance
Having a sleek, shiny new website is fantastic, but if nobody is visiting your site it defeats the purpose. SEO, or search engine optimisation, is an integral part of website development these days and is all about formatting and designing your website to give it the best possible advantage of ranking in search engines such as Google. With so many people searching for services and products online now SEO is vital in your marketing strategy, and knowing your goals will help us create a site that is beneficial to these.
Another factor that can affect the way we build your new site is an ongoing maintenance plan and who will be managing the site. For example, if you or someone on your staff is planning to make updates to the site and add new content, we will definitely recommend a website built on a content management system, or “CMS”, such as WordPress to let you do this quickly and easily.
We are experts in efficient and high-quality website design and development, and being armed with the knowledge above will ensure that we can deliver a new website on time, within budget, that you are proud to show off and, most importantly, helps you achieve your business goals.