By getting clear on your website strategy, you can create and design a website that truly serves your business goals.
Last week, we touched on the questions to ask when creating a strategy for your website. In case you missed the post, click here.
Why do we start with questions? Because when you understand the right questions to ask and answer, you are able to clarify the purpose, goals, functionality, layout and design of your site. If you don’t dig in and do the work up front, you wind up focusing solely on the design of your site. And as we talked about last week, that only gets you so far.
Once you’ve answered those strategy questions, it’s time to transfer that information into your website layout, design and aesthetic. We’ll map out the necessities for your new site and this is what you can share with your designer or use as a reference guide when looking for a template to purchase.
Creating the visual sitemap
Your website’s visual sitemap is the blueprint of your site. It generally includes all the pages and the flow of how they interact with each other. See an example below.
By understanding the goal of your site and the type of pages you’ll have, you can plan the website’s sitemap based on your business goals. For example, let’s say you’re an author and your number one goal is to get people on your email list for an upcoming book launch. So, most pages, if not all of them, should link to an email list signup.
Or, let’s say you’re a copywriter and your website’s goal is to get people to schedule a free consultation call. You can utilize the sitemap, then, to create a flow so that all pages lead to your consultation signup form/page/link.
Optimizing content for each individual page
Once you know what page(s) your website will contain and the overall flow is structured in a way that supports your website’s goal, it’s time to map out the content for each page. And because you did the strategy work, you will take into consideration who you’re serving, how they’re getting to each individual page and the goal of that page.
Who you’re serving // Why it matters for content
It goes without saying but your content should speak directly to that perfect-for-you client. The goal of your website content is to make it abundantly clear who is AND is not a good fit for your business. People are busy and they don’t want to dig around your site to see whether or not you can help them. Make it easy, my friends. Call out their problem, speak directly to their paint points and for the love of all things, do not say you work with everyone.
How they’re getting to your site // Why it matters for content
By considering your marketing strategies and how people are landing on your page, you’ll be able to tailor the content directly to where they are in the customer journey. If your primary strategy is landing on podcasts, the content on your website page can speak directly to that visitor’s experience and how they found you. For example, let’s say you have a web page that you always share during interviews. The heading on that page can then say something like, “Oh hey, podcast listener. So happy you popped over to explore!”
If people are primarily a cold audience and know nothing about you, the content on the individual page will look different versus a warmer audience that has an experience with your brand.
The goal of the page // Why it matters for content
The goal of your site and the goal of each individual page will most likely be the same, however, there could be differences. For example, the goal of your site is to get people to book a consultation call but perhaps the goal of your blog page is to lead people to sign up for your email list. By understanding these differences, you can alter your content based on the desired result.
Looking at the design
Now that you have a better understanding of the type of content you’re sharing on each page, it’s time to consider the website design and aesthetic.
How you want people to feel // Why it matters for design
There’s a difference between having a website that is beautiful and pretty, and having a website that is strategically intentional about evoking certain emotions in the visitor. It’s possible to have a lovely website but is misaligned with how you want people to experience your brand. That’s why it’s important to answer the question FIRST before you dive into creating or purchasing a template.
For example, let’s say you purchase a website template that is bold, bright and fun but you want people to feel calm, relaxed and grounded when they experience your brand. Because the website design, layout and aesthetic is structured for a certain feeling, there will most likely be a disconnect, even if you change out the colors.
By being intentional with your website and clearly understanding its purpose, you’re setting yourself up for success. Because here’s the deal: when your website functions well, it will bring ease into your business. And remember, your website isn’t stagnant, nor should it ever be. It’s a part of your brand, which means the more action you take, the more clarity you’ll have on how it can serve your business well – meaning, the more it will evolve and grow.
Last, but certainly not least, you’re not in this alone! If you’re ready to update your own brand and website, we’d love to help! Click here to learn more about our strategic brand and website package or, better yet, grab our services guide and set up a no-obligations consultation call to see if we’re a good fit!
All my best,
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