Website design can be an emotional and creative process. There is an egocentric element to website design. But, unfortunately, these are the very things that distract from the goal and purpose of the website and ultimately leads to failure.
Webmaster for Hire is currently doing a website build for www.sportdogtrainingcenter.com. Foremost, the purpose of this build is to create a successful website. To do so, there are a couple of key ingredients that we need to take into consideration:
There are several purposes: generating revenue, branding, community, education, entertainment, and so on.
“Our website is for a group of dog trainers. We are positive trainers. No bite work or police work. Just people having fun with their dogs,” says Suzanne Wiebe.
The website needs to focus on urban pet owners, as well as small dog kennels. The message has to say ‘trust us’ but at the same time be fun. As we plan out the website, every page and every element must conform to this purpose.
As website designers, we have the knowledge and expertise needed to know best how a website should be laid out. Sometimes we run into hurdles with our clients when we know that something they want would actually go against their best interests. People who run organizations, entrepreneurs, and business owners are not actually their customers, they come at the project with a completely different perspective than their customer would.
A website needs to be designed to ‘sell’ or ‘engage’ with the consumers, not the website owners. Luckily, the individuals behind the dog training organization were willing to allow us the creative freedom to determine the layout, the colors, and the background. In this way, they enabled us to build the site they need, not just the site they want.
“We loved what Elizabeth showed us. It was so different from what we had tried to create, but it ‘worked’, and everyone who has seen it loves the colors and layout.”
It is always difficult to obtain content from business owners. This project is no different. Most people looking for a website want the website first, content second. However, a successful website build should include effective content. We asked our client to write out their content and get pictures to us before we started the project. Then, we were able to identify trouble spots, such as, missing bios, stock photography, and low resolution photos.
Businesses who need a website should create 5x more content than they need, at least 20 blog posts, and supply pictures. In addition to blog posts, content includes anything you want explained on the home page, about page, staff page, service page, etc. If you can supply high resolution, original photos and pictures, that’ll help to personalize and brand your website even further.
We were lucky with this client. They had a flyer and a logo. We could take the images and the overall ‘feel’ from these items and use them on the website.
“We had an idea of the content we wanted. We didn’t want the poorly written content we see on some sites. But we were unsure how to write our own content. In the end, we wrote as if we were talking to someone and it worked.”
All websites should offer people solutions. The solutions are what encourage people to make a purchase or sign up. When we started this project the client had a list of classes, but no solutions. Customers cannot read your mind. You need to ‘sell’ your product.
We encouraged the client to write blog posts and take lots of pictures before they started their web design project. This keeps the project on schedule, and it also gives the development team a better idea of the project scope.
While everyone loves cheap website hosts and free Do-It-Yourself websites, the fact is that many of these sites are built on overloaded systems running on outdated software. Where a good hosting company may only have a couple hundred websites on a server, a cheap host may have thousands of websites on a single server.
There are many great websites that receive little or no exposure, or whose marketing plan is not producing results because they are hosted on overloaded, slow servers.
These five tips will help you create a good working relationship with your website development team. If you are interested in engaging our services, please contact us
Schedule time to connect and discuss your specific needs.