If you don’t have a website strategy, then think of your website as only half completed – now is the time to get it sorted.
Before the onset of mass digitalisation having a website was a huge deal, standing you out from the crowd and even your competitors. Then more and more of us built our own websites, the simple 2 or 3 pagers. Then came blogs, service pages, lead pages and landing pages. Everyone realised this was a must rather than compulsory option. Is it even possible to stand out in today’s crowded online space? The answer is a simple – yes it is. Enter the website strategy.
What is a website strategy?
Everything you create, build and grow should have a purpose and website strategy is no different. A website strategy is your clear path to pursuing your website’s purpose. Your strategy is for driving traffic, completing your website’s goals and ultimately ensuring your visitors have the ultimate experience when they visit.
Before you get started
It’s important to set clear business goals before you get started. You work hard, so should your website. The main point of this strategy is to create a website that lets you reach your goals in the easiest way possible.
So before you begin, make sure you are clear about:
– What is the main purpose of your website? Are you trying to sell your products or services? Maybe you’re getting money from advertising and that’s the most important feature of your website? Whatever it is, make sure you have this at the front of your mind when creating your website strategy!
– Who is your target audience? The more specific you can be, the better! And don’t think of it only in terms of who you’d like to get attention from. Make sure to research who are the people that are really interested in what you’re doing and who keep coming back for more? Unless you are Google or Macy’s, you are not going to appeal to everybody. But that’s OK. Strategise which people are going to buy from you – it’s OK if you do not have a product or service for everyone. It’s not always possible to match your imagined perfect audience with your actual visitors but you should keep in mind both target groups when growing your website.
– What is the most important action you want your visitors to take? Is it a purchase of your product? Are you looking forward to getting new clients on board? Maybe you’re trying to get them in your sales funnel and gather their emails? This is your ultimate goal, think how are you going to get a visitor to do what you want when they visit your website.
Always consider these points
There are several topics that can be covered in your website strategy. Although the days of 2 or 3 page websites are now behind us, more pages do not necessary equate to a better goal-orientated website. So what are the points you definitely should consider to skyrocket your business with website strategy?
– How obvious is the goal of your website for your visitors? Can they obtain all the most important information about your website at first glance? Specifically checking points including header text and design. How big and obvious are your website’s headers? How catchy is your tagline? Does it not only get your visitors attention but also provide them with the information they need?
– If they have only 5 seconds to stay on your website, will they get what they came for? Let’s say, I’m researching digital marketing firms because I want to work on my social media management with a professional. If I get to your agencies website, can I easily notice information that says “Come here for more information on social media management”?
– It’s always about usability. Is it EASY to use your website? Amazing design is a great (and nonetheless beautiful) thing. But is it usable, navigable? For example, your target visitor has found your website and is searching for the topic of their interest. Will the interest to research the topic last if they won’t be able to find a “Learn more” button? No, it won’t. People don’t have time for websites they don’t know how to use. Furthermore, visitors scan for information, they do not read anymore.
– Your website has to be responsive. Always. This should come as a no surprise to you – each day more and more people are using their mobile phones instead of computers to surf the web. So, without doubt, your website must be responsive. Google have even begun penalising websites that are not mobile responsive and down ranking them in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPS). Putting SEO aside can your visitors follow the same easy and navigable path they would take on desktop? If not then you will not achieve your website goals.
– Create a simple user interface! A simple user interface doesn’t always mean minimalism or complete simplicity in design. The best user interface should be created with your user in mind. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking complexity equates to brand sophistication. Don’t do this! Your website can be unique, well-designed and truly beautiful if you keep your user interface simple and obvious for your users. That’s what keeps your visitors coming back – be hard to use. They will go elsewhere.
Your website strategy doesn’t have to be complex, simply place your goals and target users at the core of your strategising. Ensure that visitors can complete your required goals on site, and this alone will ensure they come back, thus increasing your online visibility. You can read more website tips here.
About the author: Ieva Laicāne a multi-passionate graphic designer and digital marketer. After working as a freelance graphic designer for several years, she decided to pursue her true passion and connect with digital nomads and freelancers around the world and spread the message – your random passion also can be the career of your dreams! Ieva is the author of The Random Passion project: a story and resource library for aspiring digital nomads and new freelancers. Check out their Facebook page.