YOU NEED HELP!
Your website isn’t performing to the standard you’d like it to.
You are not generating leads or business enquiries.
No-one is interacting with your content.
Your website has little or no traffic and the small amount of traffic that does come through, doesn’t stick around.
You are perplexed by the situation – and you have tried numerous ‘solutions’ to rectify the problem, with no success.
You have taken the decision that ultimately, your website needs to be overhauled and redesigned.
You want a website that is not static and one that will grow with you.
YOU NEED GROWTH-DRIVEN DESIGN
With traditional website redesign, constructing your website was – and still is – a complicated and time consuming process. It could typically take anything from six months to a year – or even more – and in this period of time, your existing, unsatisfactory website is still there, giving out the wrong messages and not contributing to lead generation for the business.
And, even when the new, replacement website is finally launched, it is typically then left untended, receiving no major updates to its content, layout, navigation or usability, as the business focuses on ‘other things’, having solved the ‘website problem’.
Today your website is the nucleus of your marketing activity – and without regular maintenance, enhancement and support, it will fail to reflect the business’ up-to-date positioning and messaging.
SO WHAT CAN I DO?
Today, thanks to the data, analytics and marketing tools available, marketers have more power than ever to make informed decisions about their website. A clear understanding of web analytics and marketing automation will enable your business to develop an ever-improving website, one that captures prospect information and delivers enquiries to your sales team. One that grows with your business and which transforms and builds as your business does.
This is the idea behind Growth-Driven Design in that it utilizes the data that is accumulated about your website visitors’ behavior – the pages they like, page performance, what content people engage with on your website, and what they ignore. It enables you to create a streamlined, prospect-orientated website which continually grows and provides up-to-date relevant, high- quality information.
This blog post will highlight exactly why your business needs a Growth-Driven approach to not only its website redesign, but also to the rest of its marketing activity. In addition, this blog post will convey the benefits of a Growth-Driven design approach over a traditional website redesign.
HOW DOES GROWTH DRIVEN DESIGN WORK?
With a Growth-Driven Design approach, instead of reconstructing the entirety of your ‘unsatisfactory’ website and spending a significant amount of your budget over a long period of time, you instead launch your website from a point of MVP – the minimum viable product – which is essentially the most practical and effective website for your business to launch with in the shortest period of time. Your MVP website then becomes the foundation of your new website model.
This MVP website is comprised of your highest value pages, the pages which have driven, and will continue to drive, the majority of your traffic and therefore, your overall lead generation activity.
From this point on, you agree with your website team, subject matter experts and management department that you will add new, high-quality pages in increments over a period of time to your website, instead of trying to redraft it in its entirety in the space of a few weeks – which is usually impractical and unachievable for most businesses.
STEP 1. GOALS
Firstly, what are the goals for your business?
What are you trying to achieve by redesigning your website?
As with any marketing or sales activity, it needs to be grounded in context – and that’s why you need a SMART goal, a goal which is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely, as it will help you to understand what you truly need to do, as well as measure your progress in the future.
STEP 2. BUYER PERSONAS AND EXISTING USER RESEARCH
Once you have established what you want to achieve with your website redesign, you need to address the kinds of people that will be visiting your website – your buyer personas. This part of the process is absolutely fundamental, as your buyer personas will permeate throughout all of your business’ marketing activities.
Think about what problem your business is trying to solve and the pain points that your buyer personas might have, as well as their demographic, occupation, industry, job title – all of these variables will enable you to make a more granular, forensically accurate buyer persona which in turn, will enable you to create a website that’s tailored to a specific audience.
Also, for the contacts you have generated already, take some time trying to understand who they are, what they do, why they do what they do and the general day-to-day business problems they face. Your existing contacts database is a valuable and incredibly lucrative source of information, as it will provide you with a standardization of the types of individuals that interact with your business – something which you can use in developing and validating your buyer personas.
STEP 3. ANALYSE YOUR EXISTING WEBSITE AND SELECT YOUR HIGHEST VALUE PAGES
It’s highly likely that you will have collected some form of data in regards to your business’ website. This data will provide not only a platform to work upon, but also a benchmark for your future activity, so you can measure the differences between your current website and your ‘growth-driven’ new website.
In addition, a comprehensive website analysis which investigates: page performance, content performance, page views, conversion ratios on each page, and traffic to particular areas of the website – will enable you to determine what is working and what is not working, and allow you to select your highest value pages and improve them.
STEP 4. DETERMINE THE FUNCTION OF YOUR HVP PAGES
The pages you have chosen, your highest value pages, all need to have some kind of call-to-action, something which encourages visitors to convert, to download a piece of content, or to contact your business. At this point, you need to agree with your team what the functionality of each of these pages will be – will they focus on:
- Converting visitors to leads?
- Delivering useful and relevant content?
- Engaging with your business in regards to a solution?
Once you have established the core functionalities of your HVP pages, you can determine how best your business can engage with your target audience and influence their decision making process.
STEP 5. YOUR MVP WEBSITE
When it comes to your new, Growth-Driven website, you need to forget about ‘perfection’ and ‘completion’, as in reality, your website is never truly complete, but rather a piece of your business that you continually improve and add to. However, at this point, you want to launch the most feasible, practical and effective website in the shortest period of time, so that your business has an active – rather than static – presence online. This website is your minimum viable product (MVP).
You must accept that you will likely launch your website with only 20% of its overall pages. The idea is that the pages you identified previously as your highest-value pages (HVP) are the pages you launch with, your core service offerings and the pages which drive people to your website, and deliver conversions. These pages will help you to learn more about your audience as well, their behaviors on your website, what content works, and what design and layouts are appealing. Also, for the pages you have not launched with, assess whether they are an absolute necessity or whether they will have any kind of impact on your website’s traffic, lead generation, conversion activity and other elements. If not, you should discard them and replace them with pages that work.
Remember, your website will never be perfect – and perhaps to some extent, thinking that it ever will, is complacent. You should always strive to improve the lead generating nucleus that is your website.
STEP 6. DATA COLLECTION
It goes without saying that in order for this project to identify successes and failures, you need to have data collection software set up, and in this day and age that means Google Analytics as the bare minimum. The data you collect should reflect the original SMART goals you identified earlier.
For example, if one of the KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for your MVP website was to generate X% more conversions from a specific page, your data recording and reporting should be set-up to capture that information – and that’s entirely possible through marketing automation tools.
This process is absolutely vital to the future growth of your website, as it allows you to understand what worked, what didn’t work and how visitors interact with your website.
STEP 7. REMAINING PAGES AND GROWING INCREMENTALLY
As mentioned before, your website will never be perfect and you should use the data you collect from your MVP website to address the rest of your website. The pages that remain should be refined and adjusted based on the information you have been collecting. Make this a regime, a ritual if you will, that your marketing and sales departments come together to assess the efficacy of their growth-driven website. Once they have, ensure they agree on what pages should be added next, and with what purpose and function.
Even as you exit the MVP phase and begin to construct your full website, you should streamline the process and grow in increments. At no stage should you attempt to add every single page at once, as this will not only make it difficult to measure what is and isn’t working, but it may not be feasible for your team, as they may have other commitments.
STEP 8. WHAT YOU NEED TO DO
- Regularly share what you have learned and discovered from your MVP website with your marketing and/ or sales departments.
- Evaluate your performance vs your original goals.
- Continually refine the website based on user activity.
- Add new, high- quality content and assets on a regular basis.
- Use the data you have acquired to develop further and learn what you could do better.
- Repeat this six point cycle.