It is amazing how many people come to me to design a website with only a vague notion of why they want one. Yet in the world outside the web they would never do this. You don’t rent a shop without having a plan or doing some research.
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Yet you will build a website without doing any real research, no plan, and often no real idea of how your website will support your business. This is a serious lose of time and money. Consider the cost of hosting, domain name(s) design and development and ongoing maintenance of the site. Can you afford to develop a site without a clear plan? A bad website can actually damage your reputation and certainly won’t gain you the new customers you hoped for.
If I asked you to write one sentence to explain why you want a website, you would probably write down one of the below responses.
These are all good reasons for wanting a site but let’s look at this from a different angle.
If you can’t answer these questions with some real detailed activities that your site will perform the answer is it probably won’t do any of them.
An amazing number of people think a website will solve all their problems without giving any real thought to how it will achieve all these things.
Let’s look at one of these statements in more depth
How will your website promote your business?
Some good responses might be.
But this still does not really tell us what the website will actual do to achieve this.
By raising awareness about what services or products we offer
Promoting new products and special offers
Hopefully you get the idea.
Of course that is very simplistic and different activities take more time than others. But hopefully you can start to see that with a little thought you can build a much clearer idea of what the aims of your website are and how your website is going to achieve those aims through actual content and activities. With this in place you will produce a site that actually supports the needs of your business and successfully sells that business to your customers.