By Bob West
We have built websites for a number of clients in recent years, and most of these clients hired Meister Custom for one of two reason:
1. They needed a website that is easier to update and maintain; or
2. They needed a website that offered a better mobile experience.
Deciding you need a new website is step one in the process. Step two centers on determining what you want from your new website, so let’s talk about seven important questions we’ll ask before even giving you a website proposal.
Question #1: What is the main purpose of your website?
Different companies have different goals for their websites. Some websites exist to produce sales leads while others are designed to sell product. Most of our clients want to use their website to engage prospective customers by educating them and demonstrating their own expertise.
Question #2: Who is the main audience for your website?
This should be one of the simplest questions we ask, but clarifying this key point ensures that the website design and development efforts are aligned to accomplish this goal.
Question #3: Who are your main competitors?
We want to review your competitors’ websites to understand what your prospective customers will expect for your website, identify ‘must have’ features and determine opportunities for you to differentiate yourself.
Question #4: What does your website need or not need (from a technology standpoint)?
Different technological needs can certainly influence a proposal and a project. Different technologies we have tackled range from e-commerce capabilities to faceted search that allows users to customize their product search to integration with a client’s customer database so website visitors can check order history, etc. Just about everything is possible in today’s world, so determining a clear scope for the project is critical.
Question #5: What new features or functions does the website need?
Another way to look at this is, what features do you absolutely want to keep from your current website or wish you could add to that website? What parts of the current website do your customers value the most? What do you wish your current website did that it doesn’t do?
Question #6: How will you measure whether the new website is a success?
Answering this question can be difficult in our world since so few clients transact sales online. So, will you use traffic growth to evaluate success? Are you going to count on anecdotal feedback from the market to indicate how well the new website works? Or, do you have some other measuring stick.
Question #7: What’s your budget?
Yes, we’re going to ask this. Sharing these details – even if you only have a range – helps ensure we all share the same vision for your project. (Most websites we build for clients range from $10,000 to $20,000.)
Bob West is the Director of Meister Custom. You can contact him at 440-602-9129 or firstname.lastname@example.org to further discuss your website needs.