Something brought you to our website. Perhaps it was a design you’ve seen we developed for a client, or perhaps it was through one of our previously optimized posts that you came across in your search results. Whatever the source, we are happy you are here.
We are often asked why does it matter whether you spend the time and resources on a good design? The answer is mainly psychology. We are very visual and subconsciously driven creatures – even you, it is what brought you here in the first place. Humans communicate as much with images as we do with words, and images touch us on many more levels than words alone.
Design takes this concept to a whole new level. Beyond merely being attractive, marketing materials serve a purpose. That purpose will be dictated by a well-thought-out brand strategy. And that is where 99.9% of websites utterly fail. You can be the world’s most stunning designer, but without a strategy and a plan of attack, your designs will be ineffective.
So what does that mean? How can we create effective designs for marketing?
It starts with understanding your goals. Are you selling a product? Or are you merely trying to substantiate and validate your brand with an online presence? Or are you a non-profit organization trying to raise donations?
These obviously require a different solution so why do they choose the same amateur templates?. Here is where the subpar web branding digerati thrive on bad advice and worse websites. Using templates, pretend designers will try to shove your needs and goals into a box. In other words, they force your needs to fit the solution, rather than create a solution to fit your needs.
A great website should tell your story, be your billboard, and quickly tell people how you can benefit them. There is no limit to the depth you can put into your website. But you need to plan it and lay it out, and utilize an interface that is easy to use and digs into your depths, while not overwhelming nor turning off your key target audiences.
This is never a quick or easy process. We often find with our clients that they do not always know who are their main customers or even where to find them. They have ideas, but rarely have they taken the time to ask and think through the following sets of questions we ask all of our clients.
- First, what is the primary goal of the website? Is it to educate? Is it to serve as a resource? Or is it to raise awareness and/or convince people to donate? You may have several goals, and if you do, you should list them in order of importance.
- Second, who are your users? For example, who are your main/ primary users and how do you want them to benefit from your website? Who are the secondary users and how do you want them to benefit from your website?
Questions like these are required to be answered to understand the situation. Only from this knowledge and an alignment of goals can one even begin to strategize about an effective brand strategy!
So before you rush to launch a website use someone else’s “box” solution, thinking the “box” solution will be good enough, take a moment to answer the above questions. This analysis is necessary for creating a purposeful design that encompasses specific targets and solutions to effectuate your business goals.