Considering a website redesign?
The conversation is a familiar one. The marketing people tell the company CEO that they need a new website to grow the business. The CEO responds by asking how he or she built such a great company before the Internet existed. It’s a stalemate.
As web designers, we face this quandary quite frequently. The truth of the matter is that both sides are correct. Most of the companies that we work for were built by visionary CEOs who persevered through multiple recessions and grew their firms through sheer force of will and personality. Likewise, most of the marketing people we work with share the CEO’s vision but are seeking new ways to leverage their reputation and brand.
Understanding this natural friction is important to us as web developers. It’s impossible (and unproductive) to try and strip away the character that defined a business. The key is to understand what made the company leadership so successful and parlay that into an online message that reflects the organization’s spirit and value proposition. We accomplish this through rigorous interviewing from the beginning of the process.
Whether it’s a medical practice, global consulting firm or university, interviewing the stakeholders of a company is essential. Often times, our findings have the unintended consequence of demonstrating competing interests or objectives within the organization. Other times, the process helps leadership crystalize the organization’s mission and brand. No matter the outcome, the interview process is the single most valuable aspect of web design that we employ.
Once we understand and internalize the objective of a new website for a client, we are able to articulate the vision in a way that the marketing department can utilize and the CEO can justify. Sometimes it’s as simple as bringing both parties together to understand that while a great website doesn’t guarantee new business, a bad website guarantees business will be lost.
Let’s hang on that idea for a moment, because even this concept has an element of conflict. After all, not losing business means you’re gaining business. The most important thing to understand about your organization’s website is that it is more than a calling card or a good-looking brochure. The best way to understand what we mean by this is to examine your own search habits.
Gone are the days when a newspaper advertisement or even a referral from a friend will exclusively drive new business. While these are still effective methods to gain attention for a brand, consumers (of any kind) are programmed to independently research a company before making a purchase. Increasingly, consumers seek out online product reviews, ratings services, social media presence, and so on. We are constantly making value judgments about products and services based on the digital profile of an organization, no matter how big or small it may be. And perhaps nothing says more about a company/practitioner/firm than its website.
The most reputable organization with a terrible website runs the risk of turning potential customers away because consumers have been conditioned to expect a quality website. Likewise, the least reputable organizations that maintain a high-quality web presence are likely doing more business than they deserve. If you are considering improving your web presence and looking for a Long Island web design company, contact us to see what Morey Publishing can do for you.
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