You've decided it's time for a new or redesigned website. Looking at competitors websites you see many different gadgets and widgets that you think your site simply must have. Does your site really need all that flash though? Before you get carried away here are some questions to ask yourself when dreaming of your new website.
What do my visitors want from my site?
It's time to get into your visitor's heads and figure out what they are actually looking for. If you are a celebrity or musician your fans will be visiting your site. They will want to know all about your life, and be looking for exclusive content they can't find on other sites. If you are selling widgets people will want to know what kind of widgets you sell, if you have a brick and mortar shop and if so where.
Will that gadget benefit my users/visitors?
Having that fancy gallery, or other widget seems like a great idea. However, take a moment to think about your visitors. The ones who will be using your site. Do they actually have any need for it? Will it make their experience on your site better? If you cannot say with absolute certainty that it will benefit them, it's probably best to forgo it.
What content must be on my site?
Most sites will want to have similar pieces of information like contact information, services, promotions, and basic location information. You want your site to tell your visitors what your brand is all about and how it can help meet their needs or improve their lives. If you are a musician you'll probably want to include your music, and show dates. Artists will want to showcase their work and process.
Will my site be monetized?
Will your site have sponsors, or ads? Placement of ads is very important and should be considered while your site is being designed so that they are placed in not only the most clickable locations but also look like they are part of the site's design and not an after thought. If you are going to sell your own products you'll want to ensure they are featured prominently as well.
Does my site fit with my overall brand image?
Your site should reflect your brand. Make sure your site's design is in keeping with branding you have done in other places, from your stationary to your social media accounts. Your website should compliment and unite your other branding efforts, not distract from it.
Building your site can get overwhelming and the wants may threaten to overwhelm the needs. However, you can prevent scope creep and get the perfect site for your brand by keeping these 5 questions in mind.