Our digital marketing team spends the majority of its time working on the “agency side” of website launches. To us, there’s no better feeling than reaching the finish line and sounding off the gong––right after another client’s website goes live. Yes, we have an actual gong.
For our team, a new website launch is an opportunity to share the final product of weeks of discovery, strategy, content creation, design, and development––all rolled into one, cohesive SEO-friendly website.
It’s a labor of love, but it’s what we do best!
Website design and web development allow us to create new, attractive sites that are designed to help brands share their stories and engage with more customers around the world. And being objective during the website building process is key. It helps us make those harder decisions, such as what to keep, what to cut, and what to recommend for increased performance and conversion rates.
However, when it came time to build our own website, we suddenly found ourselves inside our clients’ shoes. We no longer had the advantage of being objective. This time it was too close and too personal.
No matter how long you’ve worked in digital marketing, you’re always learning new tricks––it’s why it never gets old. And we did, in fact, learn a few new tricks about building a website that we highly recommend!
1) Always Get an Outside Perspective
Staying unbiased and objective is easier said than done when you’re talking about your company website. Therefore, it’s absolutely essential to get an outside perspective, so you don’t fall into the trap of making a site that you “think” looks great, but your customers hate using.
While writing your website copy, for instance, it’s easy to write as though the audience is someone from within your industry. But more often than not, the user may be someone who doesn’t understand your industry terms, trends, acronyms, etc. Therefore, it’s important to have people from outside of your industry, and ones you trust for an honest opinion, to ensure your language isn’t getting too technical and that it reads well and keeps them intrigued.
2) Expect Hiccups
No matter how much you plan, things can––and often will––go wrong. Whether it’s design changes, timeline shifts, or development issues, it’s better to plan for hiccups before they occur, so you always have another path forward.
3) Go Through the Site with a User Persona in Mind
Put yourself in the customers’ seat. What are they looking for? What questions are they asking? How will they use your website to get the right answers, purchase a product, request a consultation, or stay connected to your news and updates?
Thinking critically from the mindset of your target audience will allow you to plan the user’s journey throughout the site. It will also help you with goal setting, site mapping, and split testing.
4) Don’t Forget About the Keywords You’re Currently Ranking For
It’s easy to start looking for new keywords and optimizing your existing content without taking into consideration the keywords you’re already ranking for. Keeping those in mind, and making sure to integrate them thoughtfully throughout the new site, will allow you to maintain, or possibly increase, your rankings in the SERPs.
5) Do Your Own Website Audit
A good way to ensure you don’t skip 3 and 4 on this list is to perform your own website audit. This is an essential service we provide when we’re creating a new website strategy. Why? It helps track your current site’s metrics (i.e., engagement, pageviews, user behaviors, acquisitions, etc.), as well as goal conversions, current keyword rankings, backlinks, and competition. It also helps you identify opportunities you might be missing out on!
We never start a new website build without conducting a comprehensive audit first. But when it’s your own website, you might already think you know who your target demographic is, what keywords you already rank for, or how users are engaging with your site. Granted, you may have a good idea of these analytics, but you need a website audit to create transparency. This helps you see where you came from, so you can plan where you want to go next!
So, just as we always do the foundational work for our clients before we begin the fun part of design and development, we quickly realized we couldn’t skip this important step on our own site.
Stay Connected with Our Team
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If you’re looking to build a new website for your company or eCommerce store, our team of experts can help you plan, strategize, and develop a site that brings in more users and has you seeing the results you want!
To get started, schedule a consultation today!