Any experienced business owner knows an effective website is more than just a beautiful design. The website must function perfectly for all users. This includes the facilitation of users to take action and complete their purchase or goal seamlessly.
This is why creating a web design strategy is key to the success of a website, and more importantly, your business. By the end of this process, you will understand web design strategy objectives and how to reach those goals for your own business.
What Is A Web Design Strategy?
A website design strategy is a three-phase process in which you will learn more about the industry you operate in, determine the goals you intend to accomplish, and determine how to construct your website to achieve those goals.
The Three Phases Of Web Design Strategy Are:
- Research Phase.
- Audit Phase.
- Website Strategy Phase.
It is vital to the success of your website that you complete a web design strategy before proceeding with your site. Read on to learn how to properly complete each phase to ensure your new website design will align with your business’s objectives and reach your audience.
Phase 1: Research
During this initial phase, competitive analysis and in-depth research into your industry will be essential to your success. Examining current website performance and metrics and speaking with key team members or stakeholders will provide important feedback and data.
Here Are Some Steps To Get You Headed In The Right Direction.
- Start by asking trusted staff members from each department what they feel the website should contain to help them efficiently succeed.
- Ask what areas of the website are weakest or most difficult to navigate or find. This information will help you correct and refine areas that have previously hindered the user experience.
- Find out the pain points of your users and determine how best to address them in your web design.
If you run a small business with no employees, look into utilizing the services of a test group. This can provide you with this kind of feedback in exchange for compensation. Please note, this test group should be comprised of people who fit into your target audience profile.
You may be asking yourself, “what is a target audience?” To create a successful website, you will need to determine who you’re trying to reach. To discover who is most likely to need and buy what you have to offer, conduct a target market analysis as part of your website design strategy research. Hundreds of thousands of dollars in marketing budgets are wasted each year by business owners who fail to complete this step.
For example, if you find your customers want to pay a certain way, make sure your website can accommodate this. Your business should be able to offer various forms of credit card processing so no customer falls through the cracks. Research is vital here to highlight the friction your users may be running into when utilizing your website. Make sure you don’t skip any steps of the research phase, as it’s the foundation of your overall strategy.
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Phase 2: Audit
Now that you’ve acquired data and insights from the research conducted in phase one, you can give this information to your website developer. Include an overview of your findings and list the problems you want to be addressed. In addition, discuss ways to use technology to create systems for efficiency and success. It’s important to communicate your goals to your developer so the website design fully aligns with your objectives.
The person or agency you hire will work with you to develop an action plan for the website, taking everything into account. Also, as a business owner, you will need to become familiar with online tools like Google Analytics. This is a tool that tracks various performance metrics for you and lets you regularly compare how your website is performing against your goals and outside competition.
During this audit phase, you can look into metrics such as your website’s bounce rate, mobile vs desktop loadability, and behavior, or use industry benchmark data to compare how your website is performing compared to industry figures.
The audit phase will help you identify areas for further improvement. Additionally, it will provide you with useful, data-driven insights, and help identify trends in the market you can leverage for success.
Phase 3: Website Strategy
During the website strategy phase, you’ll take the insights from your audits and create sound recommendations to improve the website design and functionality.
Creating a marketing funnel explaining each step your potential buyers take along their purchase journey will be key. You want to create a flow from the first click to the final checkout that makes sense. In the initial stages, the user is gathering information. Then, as they delve further down the marketing funnel, creating interest and consideration will be essential to get them to the final step…conversion.
The content on your website, when done properly, will convey a message that speaks to your audience and aligns with your objectives. Content is king and can make or break the success of your business. It’s imperative to take actionable steps to ensure the design, functionality, and other elements of your web design strategy are clear, easy to use, and interesting to the user.
The Benefits Of Creating A Web Design Strategy
As you can see, appealing to your audience is vital to the success of your website design strategy. In every phase of the process, key information will be discovered and evaluated to ensure every detail of the design supports the goals of your business.
Some Of The Benefits Of Creating A Strategy Include:
- Credibility. If the website design is out of date, users will leave, either because it’s unattractive or doesn’t feel right.
- SEO. A good website design can do wonders for your website’s rankings on online search engines.
- Competition. Your competitors are most likely already doing this, it’s time to level up.
- Consistent Branding. The design of your website tells your online visitors everything they need to know about your company. It helps to keep your branding consistent across channels.
- Builds Trust. Your customers want to know if they can trust your business. A professional and elegant website helps them do just this.
Create A Website Design Strategy Today
Your website design is directly related to your online success, and the only way to make it successful is to create a strong strategy. All the components of a website design strategy (whether that’s an audit, completing a target market analysis, or deciphering a marketing funnel), will lead to more clarity and usable data. This will help your business correct any hang-ups and thrive.
Take the first step today and begin analyzing how to reach your audience. Then, decide how you can provide them with value and outshine your competitors every time.