Align the goals of your websiteWhen starting a new webstite project, I suggest you (and your group) run through the following questions.  Doing so will help you to define the goals of the website, who it will serve, a basic page structure, and an initial keyword list.

  • Purpose: What is the purpose of this website?
    • Informational, commerce, or entertainment.
    • Describe this as a percentage of each group, with the total equaling 100%
  • Target audience: Describe who is going to be visiting this website.
    • Age group, station in life, male/female ratio, income range,  and so on.
    • If the site has multiple target groups, describe this for each group
    • Describe this as a percentage of each group, with the total equaling 100%
  • Problems to solve: What problems of your target audience, will this website solve?
    • Write a group of solutions for each target audience group.  Be concise, and organize this list as bullet points.
      • Add a second layer of specific solutions.  These specific solutions will become the pages of your website.
    • Describe these problems in broad terms, and short phrases.  These terms will be the start of your keyword research.
      • Even if you’re not aiming to dominate the web with SEO, having a keyword set keeps your website built around a central topic.  When the whole team has a list of keywords to work from, the intent of the website is maintained as time goes on.  This will keep the website, and you, focused on solving the target audiences’ problems.
This approach has many similarities to writing a business plan, or any strategy statement.  It is important to remember that you cannot provide everything to everyone, and your goal should be to become an source of expert knowledge on the topic.  Following these steps, before discussing user experience and functionality, your website will be a lot stronger and much easier to optimize!

Post filed under SEO, Strategy, Web Marketing.