Understanding your web development goals is critical to the long-term success of your website. Before you begin the web development process, your organization should clearly define the business goals that it hopes to achieve through the website. Without clear website goals, your project will be aimless, and there is no guarantee that your business will see any benefit from website development.
It doesn’t matter if you are doing a website redesign or building a new website. You need to clearly define your business goals. Maintaining a digital presence is crucial in the modern business world. Let’s explore common business goals and how you can achieve them with your website.
Understanding Web Development Goals
Defining your website goals will depend mainly on the type of business you operate. For example, a retail business with an eCommerce website will have different goals than a law firm will have for its website. Getting more traffic to your website is a goal that every website should have. However, once users are attracted to your website, you need to ensure that your web design is aligned with your business goals and the objectives you want to achieve.
Broadly, we can simplify all website goals into four major objectives. Only one of these objectives will be applicable for some websites, but for others, all four objectives might be a part of their website goals. Every business has its own goals and objectives. This categorization is not flawless, but it is a helpful way to begin the conversation about what business goals and expectations you have for your website.
Broadly, there are four major website goals you could have, and they are:
- Increase sales/conversions
- Become a subject matter expert
- Improve customer interactions
- Build a brand image/reputation
Keep in mind that many of these goals assist one another, and the boundaries between them are often fluid. As a result, some of the actions you could take to improve your website’s conversion rate, for example, might also help your business improve customer interactions as well.
Generating more online sales or conversions is the goal of many websites. If you sell products on your website, this is a business goal you will likely want to focus on during website development. Even if you don’t necessarily sell a product online, many businesses sell themselves or their services and focus on website conversions. A conversion could be a phone call, a submitted form, a chatbot interaction, etc. Conversions don’t always lead to final sales, but they give your business a better chance at making a sale.
If you want to increase sales and conversions with your website, the main focus of your website development project should be creating a seamless User Interface (UI) and User Experience (UX). One of the major hurdles that get in a user’s way and negatively affect online sales and conversion rates is a poor User Interface. You would be surprised at how many businesses squander opportunities because their website doesn’t function properly. For example, maybe users can’t add or remove items from their shopping cart. Once users have an interface issue, they are likely to abandon your website because they had a poor experience.
Additional design tips that can help your website generate more sales and conversions include clear call-to-action, clearly defined buttons and action items, and simple, uncluttered screen designs.
Become a Subject Matter Expert
Another common goal for many businesses with their website is to establish themselves as subject matter experts. Becoming an authority in users’ eyes has several benefits, including increasing sales and conversions, generating more web traffic, and developing a respected brand image.
Focusing on this goal is important for websites that sell niche items or services. For example, many HVAC service providers seek to position themselves as subject matter experts with their websites because their ultimate goal is to increase the number of users who hire them to service their heating and air conditioning. HVAC service providers don’t sell items on their websites, and in most localities, this is a competitive industry.
Positioning your brand as a subject matter expert can also be helpful for websites that sell items online. Still, unless the products are highly specialized, it isn’t surprising to see many of these websites invest their website development efforts in other ways.
The best way to position your brand as a subject matter expert is to create content around your subject matter. It is important to create content regularly to signal to Google and other search engines that you are active in the industry. In addition to content creation, your website needs to focus on search engine optimization best practices and cross-marketing your website on other respected websites and forums to build trust with your audience.
Improve Customer Interactions
Many businesses invest in website redesign and development to improve their interactions with existing customers. Websites and mobile apps have given businesses unparalleled access to their customers. However, if your business doesn’t have a well-designed website, you could be missing out on key customer interactions that can help increase online sales, conversions, and build more brand trust and loyalty.
If you want to improve your interactions with your existing customers, there are a few things you can do with your website. First, it is important to offer online customer support that helps customers address and resolve issues they may have. Many businesses are discovering that AI-powered chatbots can help cover customer service 24/7/365.
Additional ways your business can improve customer interactions include hosting informational webinars, offering live online support, utilizing email marketing lists, and creating valuable, informative content that users can access and share at any time.
Build a Brand Image/Reputation
Often businesses will create a website or digital presence just to increase awareness around products, service offerings, or the brand. Digital marketing is one of the most effective marketing channels because almost everyone is online in some fashion. The business goal behind increasing brand awareness and reputation is about attracting more customers.
As a result, many of the things we already discussed can help your website build a strong brand image for your business. The most effective ways to build brand reputation include creating content and positioning your business as a subject matter expert, engaging your users on your website and social media, and offering promotions and deals to your users.
As you can see, many of the common website development goals overlap either in desired result or action required to achieve the goal. However, most businesses will likely want to actively pursue most of the four goals covered in this post. If your business needs help establishing web development goals and creating a unique digital experience for your users, reach out to an app development partner with years of industry experience and technical expertise.