Did you know? There are 180,000,000 active websites? How many of them do you think need an overhaul because it was poorly executed? When thinking about this question, I did some research online and came across a fantastic article this week called, How Our Eyes Move On A Website. I highly suggest you take a look at this article because it is full of great information. If you’re a marketer like me, it’s always good to be on the lookout for best practice information. If you’re a freelancer developing and creating sites for your clients, this is also good stuff. Regardless of what profession you’re in, if you are in the business of creating website content, this is a must read because if the website stinks, everyone suffers.

Before you begin your next website development project, you really need to think about a few things prior to writing content or designing the look & feel. Here’s where I would start if the job were my responsibility. Start with a big question; one that is at the ten thousand foot level, then dive in closer with each one.

10 Questions To Ask Before You Start Creating A Website:

  1. If the website is to be successful, what has to happen?
  2. What are the goals and objectives of the site?
  3. What does the business want to customer to do when they get to the website?
  4. Describe in detail your customer profile, this will help to define what type of content to create for the website
  5. Is there existing content the company is using that needs to be displayed o the website? (Products & Services?)
  6. Do you want your site to be mobile friendly?
  7. Is there a brand guideline that needs to be followed when writing content and designing a look & feel?
  8. Does the company have key performance indicators already attached to website metrics, online purchases and inquiries?
  9. Will the site content be developed in-house or at an agency?
  10. Technically, who is responsible for managing the site?

In order to stay ahead of the game and connect with more prospects online, you need to do more than just have a nice-looking website. You need to spend time learning how consumers think, act, and behave online. – SocialMediaToday

The ten questions above are just the start of accumulating information about your brand, your customer and your goals. However, there’s more. In the article mentioned above it talks about how users absorb content on websites, where they spend the most time and what direction their eyes go, to name a few. If you know this information before you begin the web development process, you will be far more equipped to create a site that performs well instead of a site that falls flat.

Here are a few stats, courtesy of SocialMediaToday:

  • Users spend 80% of their time looking at information above the fold
  • 69% of users’ time is spent looking at the left half of a webpage
  • Users maintain an F/E shaped viewing pattern
  • Place important content on the left side of the page

Yourbrandexposed.com is designed to look at digital with an eye into the future using a creative, innovative marketing perspective. We’re a consultative and tactical resource for companies looking to leverage the power of digital, social and content marketing strategies.

Scott MacFarland

Web: www.Yourbrandexposed.com

Linkedin:http://www.linkedin.com/in/scottmacfarland

Twitter:@scmacfarland

Huffington Post:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/scott-macfarland/

Email: YourBrandExposed@yahoo.com

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Sources:

SocialMediaToday

http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/how-our-eyes-move-website-infographic

TechMadeEasy

http://www.techmadeeasy.co.uk/2014/01/18/many-websites-january-2014/

Photo Credit: HubSpot

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