Whether you are purchasing a website for your business for the first time or you are upgrading your existing website, it is imperative to do your research before committing into this investment.
Building your online business is an investment! Web development can get costly very quickly. When you decide you need a website be sure to understand that every custom feature you request (e.g. virtual tour, custom quote calculator, etc) will pile on more development hours and in turn cost you more money. Before your initial meeting with a web development company, be sure to have a list in mind of the features you absolutely require and the features that would be considered “nice to have.”
A common question we typically get asked, “how do I determine my website requirements?” If you change your perspective about a website, and view it more as your digital store, then this might be an easier question.
Examine your business and align your business goals with your website.
Ex: If you are selling products (clothing, sporting goods, cosmetics, etc) then you would require a website that allows you to manage inventory and accept online payments.
Ex: If you are selling a service (athletic training, legal counsel, medical services, etc) then you would require a website that allows for lead generation.
Do You Sell Physical Products?
- I need a platform to easily edit my website
- I need a platform to display all my products
- I need a platform to accept online orders
- I need a platform to manage inventory
- I need a platform to enable sales and discounts
- I need a platform to capture user emails for promotions
Do You Sell a Service?
- I need a platform to easily edit my website
- I need a platform to generate leads
- I need a platform that will connect with my CRM
- I need a platform with live chat
Building Traffic and Continuous Optimizations
After your website is live on the web, it is very important that you monitor your core KPIs to maximize your success in the digital world.
Too many times have I seen this situation occur:
If you have little to no experience with digital marketing or you are not “tech savy”, then be sure to ask your web development company about investing in a maintenance or digital marketing package.
Just because you have a website, this does not guarantee you will have online success! You need to fuel this machine (aka website) with traffic and monitor the user experience to achieve true digital success.
Common Digital Marketing Strategies to Build Traffic
We will not go too in-depth about digital marketing strategies in this post, but very popular methods of building traffic include, but no limited to:
- Search Engine Optimization also referred to as “SEO”
- Pay-Per-Click also referred to as “PPC” or “SEM”
- Social Media Marketing (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc)
- Influencers (Also a form of social media marketing)
- Display Advertising
Website Tracking & Marketing Technology Stacks
At Devex, we recommend at a bare minimum to have Google Analytics installed for quantitative data analysis. Every website we build for our clients has the Google Analytics script installed, so that our customers can analyze their digital traffic.
Google Analytics is a free, robust tool that will allow you to view your website metrics and monitor your goals. Beyond quantitative data analysis, there are many tools out there to help you better understand your customers and website activity, such as but not limited to:
Combining your marketing technology stacks will allow provide you an immersive analysis on your website and customer interactions. The key takeaway for all of this information is to always monitor your digital store after your initial website launch. This is the most effective method to achieve a return on your investment after your website goes live.
The Content Management System
If you do not have the budget to hire a company to continuously monitor and maintain your website, then be sure to have a robust content management system (CMS). When you hire a web development company, ask them which content management system they will use to build your website.
Having a robust content management system will allow you to do all of the aforementioned task(s) above. You will have direct access to manage your digital store or website as you see fit. In other words, the content management system or more commonly referred to as the “CMS” are the keys to your website: The CMS allows you to manage your website.
Popular content management systems include, but not limited to:
If you are in the market for a new website remember to examine your requirements, business goals, and your budget. If you require any additional assistance or would like to speak to a digital strategist, please contact us to setup a free evaluation.