Many times when developing new websites we hear “everything has to be the best AND completed ASAP!” While this is the ultimate goal of every project, it’s not always the best approach when an immediate need for your web presence is the highest priority.
While competing for a market share of services or products online, it’s beneficial to be the first on the market. The longer your website is live online, the more opportunity it has to be seen by potential customers. This gives you the urgency to launch a website as fast as possible (the quick deadline). However, first doesn’t always mean you will be successful. If you launch your website too fast just to get it online, but it is full of links and images that are broken and other things that don’t work, this could reflect negatively on your business rather than positively. So what are the necessary steps to deliver a better website, first?
The Best Way to Deliver a Better Website in Good Time
Step 1: Draft ideas, experiment with design elements and be creative.
The first phase would naturally be design. During the design phase, ideas and concepts are flying around and the excitement of creativity can often mask the deadline. Don’t sweat the deadline too much here. Just let the creativity flow, experiment with design patterns, layout, and new functionality that is user friendly. Make a list of everything you would like to see on your website design and functionality wise.
Now you have all these cool features and functionality you want to implement but you don’t have the time to put them into development. What do you do? Do you deliver half the product that works with no bugs but is easy and fun to use, or do you deliver an entire product that sucks because it’s broken and filled with problems from a rushed development process? Again the ultimate goal is to complete every design feature and have bug free functionality while still being the first to the market.
Step 2: Prioritize the elements that are most important and launch your new website on-time.
I argue that it’s best to deliver a website that may not have all the bells and whistles that you want on it yet, but that works correctly and efficiently. Prioritizing is the key to getting a better website live in a shorter amount of time. Your website is not a stagnant product, changes to it can – and should – be made over time, even after it’s live.
While every idea you had during the design phase was amazingly awesome, it may not be what your customers need or care about.
You should first start out with your list of great ideas from your design phase and start scratching items off till you get to the bare bones of want is absolutely needed. Start with that! Build and launch that website using your best ideas and a good foundation to build on after it’s live. Your customers can easily forgive a website that may not have every single thing they’re looking for right away (after all, that’s more incentive for them to give you a call!) But customers do turn away from a website that is broken.
Step 3: Tell your customers about your new website and get their feedback.
Your next goal should be traffic. After your new automotive website goes live, tell all of your customers about it and share it on social media! Get real feedback on what your specific customers want and what they like about your website. Make a list and then again start scratching items off until you get to what is most important. Then you can build upon your foundation with things you know are needed, things that your customers would specifically like to see. Nothing can replace great functionality that meets the real needs of your customers: this is what leads to a great website.
Step 4: Update your website periodically with changes that are beneficial and current.
Finally continue this process until you have a well built website without overloading or bloating it. Having too many options or a cluttered design can be just as bad as a broken website. If the customer can’t find what they are looking for they will leave.
At the end of the day a poorly built website will turn a customer away much faster than a website that may lack every detail. Do not ever deliver a half-assed website. Take your time and deliver a website that may not have all the bells and whistles you dreamed about at first, but still has a great foundation to build on. Do the research and use techniques that you know will work for your market space and customers, and when its all said and done you will have a great website!