Tuesday, 19 March 2013
Building a new web site is an exciting time for business. Fresh copy, new imagery and you have the best intentions to keep it updated. It’s your home on the web; your web site is your shop front and you want it to look amazing.
But then reality sets in.
You are busy running your business and have 101 tasks to complete. That web site update or article drops down the to-do list. In fact it never seems to make its way back to number one.
As time passes customers aren’t flooding the web site with enquiries so you question the investment you’ve made.
Your web site design company is nowhere to be found, after all their in the business of designing web sites, not supporting them.
You have reached a crossroads. Where to from here?
Why do your customers need your web site? What problems are you solving for them? What content do they need from you, their trusted advisor? Getting inside your customers’ minds is essential in developing your web strategy. Your site is a 24-hour shop front that is always open for business. Delivering relevant, timely content to your audience will ensure your traffic, and enquiries, will continue to grow.
By beginning with a great web site that has clear and measurable business objectives the project will be less daunting and results will come.
Choosing the correct partner in any project is vital. A web site is an ongoing continuous improvement journey. The right web design company will offer guidance, direction and support on this journey. Establishing your goals for the website together and clear objectives along the way will mean your site is an asset and not a liability.
Looking at the track record of your web design agency and their client partnerships are a good indicator. Your agency will guide you on best practises, content and design while keeping the technical complexities behind the scenes.
Many business web sites lack direction because they are built on the wrong platform. Essential updates are complicated or overly technical. Frustration sets in and the best-laid plans fizzle out. A Content Management System (CMS) is the framework your website is built on. It organises pages and content in a simple interface and adding content won’t be much harder than typing in Word.
A CMS offers you control. Many businesses have experienced the irritation of a designer disappearing and effectively not being able to access or update their own website. Having access to your own site with the right web design agency supporting your updates and security gives you total control over your web property.
The right CMS will evolve with your web site and web strategy and keep you in-line with current technology.
If you build on strong foundations you will not need to undertake a redesign of your website every few years. You can focus instead on developing your existing design by enhancing and refreshing the look of your website as and when required.
When structuring your website think about the needs of your target market, not your own. Remember that your web site is a vehicle for solving the business needs of your target market, not for telling people how great your company is. Your web site visitors will come to that conclusion themselves if you solve their needs.
Align yourself with a web design company who sees themselves as an online advisor and not a producer of web sites. They should be committed and accountable to your ongoing success.
We know that starting can be daunting. Download our Free report 10 Secrets for Website Success to begin the process of turning your website into a true business asset.