In this second of three posts on what you should consider when planning a new website, we’ll be address three more points for your list.
In last week’s post (1 of 3) we talked about:
- Business Goals
- Customer segments and buy personas
- Your brand values
Ready to continue?
4. Developing your brand story
Clif Bars are health-bar producers that have built a community of over 1,500 pro and amateur athletes online. They aren’t just trying to sell energy bars though… they try to make a difference, and this is something people appreciate and engage with.
You can read their brand story here.
Another great brand story and how it is communicated, is Lego’s. Let’s consider the release of the Lego Movie in 2014. Lego’s About Us page tells the basic story of their company history, vision and differentiation. What a stroke of genius to have taken these things and turn them into a Hollywood hit movie! The movie doesn’t talk about the history of Lego, but rather it is a tale told to inspire and empower – similar values to those stated on their website.
The clever thing is, that once you have come up with the basic story, you can tell it in many ways and through multiple mediums like video, audio, imagery and text. That’s where the real fun begins!
5. Competitor Research
When working on competitor research, it’s important to focus on these things:
- What your competitors are doing with their websites
- How to position your company and website in a different and more attractive way than your competitors
- Basically how to out-do them…
Some aspects to look at when analysing competitor sites are:
- Functionality (search, comments, shopping cart, reviews, etc.)
- Design styles (colours, fonts, look and feel)
- Layouts (where different elements are positioned, size and focus on page)
- Navigation (menus, sections, links)
- Content (what information they’ve included)
- Imagery (types of images and why they are there, how many, where they’re located)
- Calls to action (buttons and clickable elements)
Ask your friends, family, and staff for their ideas and inputs too. Sometimes we can get so wrapped up in our own way of thinking, that we miss the obvious. You’ll be surprised how interested some people can become when asked about their opinions and ideas for a website. It’s a beautiful thing.
6. The Customer-Centric Approach To Requirements
If we compare creating a website to building a house, the personas and brand materials are the foundations of a house we’re building, and the high-level requirements list which you’ve just completed is like the superstructure. Everything else will be fit in onto the foundations and superstructure.
Here, we are building the foundations by focussing on the persona.
- What is this persona’s main need/problem?
- Why would they come to your website? What are they trying to achieve exactly? (main user-goals)
- What can you do on the website to make it easy for them to find what they need?
- How can you make the benefits clear to them on your website?
- How can you make it clear they’ve come to the right place by arriving at your website?
Each persona should have one or more problems and user-goals.
You should enable each user-goal to be achieved with ease on your website.
Next week we’ll cover: content, site structure and the overall plan.
In the meantime, you can start planning with our help: check out our course on Udemy, where we share our insights and instruction with videos and templates you can download. And we’re available to answer your questions. Only £20 with the coupon code below!