A website gives your business a huge amount of credibility. The better designed your website is, the more functional it is, and the more tailored to your audience, the more credibility it will bring you.
A website can be a daunting task, there’s content, graphics and photography to think about — and that doesn’t even include the web design, back end development or any additional coding. As a business owner, how do you know what you need from your website? Or, perhaps more importantly, how do you know what your customers needfrom your website?
For the most efficient web design and development process, it is helpful to have your foundational branding in place. What is branding? It can feel like a bit of a buzzword and is often confused with your logo, or corporate identity. A brand is built of every impression your business makes on every person. These are good, bad or neutral impressions that include customer service, pricing, web design, print design, messaging, social media, and more. A well put together brand can lower the cost of acquisition of your dream clients, and also deter clients that you don’t want to work with (price point, for example). If you are comfortable in your brand, articulating it to a web developer will make it easier for both of you. There will be fewer revisions and you will know when something works, or doesn’t work. No more hemming and hawing or asking for multiple opinions. You have a deep understanding of what your customer is looking for and what they need from you.
Your website is a huge piece of your brand. It’s a place where all the pieces culminate. Where your visuals will meet your messaging in a place that interacts with the customers when you’re not there. It’s accessible 24/7 from any where in the world. Your website can do a lot of work for you, but the right brand needs to be in place to convert viewers into buyers into loyal customers.
To start building your brand, identify your ideal customer in as much detail as possible. Where do they live? how old are they? are they married? what are their hobbies? Paint a picture in your mind of who these people buying your product are and start to tailor your visuals and messaging to them. When you are clear on who your ideal customer is, you can ask people in your network who meet the criteria their opinions and what they look for in a business like yours. This is how designers pick fonts and colours, or how a content writer crafts messaging to draw in certain types of people. Some people are immediately attracted to the word “SALE” and will buy something on sale whether they need it or not. Others wouldn’t be caught dead buying something on sale because it’s important to them that they keep up appearances that they can afford things at full price — these are two different audiences that need very different strategies. When you know who your ideal customer is you can also tailor your web content to help draw them in, and also help with SEO.
The web design and development process doesn’t need to be scary or overwhelming. Having a clear idea of who you want to work with can dictate content and user experience. Build a great marketing team of experienced designers and developers who can bring your vision to life and advocate for your business.
Brand Strategist - Paperlime.ca