Your website is essentially a modern-day high street window, it's the medium through which 90% of your customers will engage with your business and guides their perceptions as to whether your business is hot or not.
Take the window example - imagine you're walking down the street looking to buy something cool (because apparently that's how people actually used to shop), and you stumble across a window that's framed with shabby old wood. I say framed - it is barely hanging on the wall. The glass is smeared in all manner of smeg, presumably the sweaty faces of little children struggling to take a look inside. You start thinking that maybe those kids were on to something, albeit gross, but you think about getting closer to the window to peer inside, because boy! the lighting in this joint is atrocious and you're getting curious.
Before you can commit to the act however, a glimmering light appears in your peripheral vision. You turn around to see the most beautiful window, framed in luxurious gold and surrounded by flower-crowned vines. You're already so far through their door that you've almost completely forgotten the near threat the last window posed to your skin care regimen.
It is the same with your website! Today's marketing teams understand all too well that their efforts to create engaging content and un-annoying email marketing may go entirely to waste if their website has seen better days. We all know that over 90% of consumers feel uneasy about a brand simply based on their website experience. Their expectations for a positive user experience, including website navigation, page load times and mobile optimisation are fast becoming top of mind.
Brace yourself, the hard truth is that if your site fails to provide an adequately modern experience, your prospects will bounce faster than the hyperactive rabbit I had when I was five (miss you, William).
So let's keep up with the times, and let me show you the pro's and con's of two ways you can optimise your site to rid you of your website-woes!
1. Traditional Web Design
To keep it real, traditional web design is the right option for some brands. Companies with booming marketing momentum and a dated website may choose to invest in a one-and-done development approach. So if you've got more than 10,000 monthly visitors and crazy good marketing assets that don't include excessive paid search, then whaddyaknow! Traditional Web Design might just be made for you.
But slow down bucko, before you make a decision, let's have a look at the pro's and con's of conventional web development:
You will have peace of mind knowing when the project will start and at which point it will be completed.
You have probably been through Traditional Web Design before, and you are comfortable with the process, and the fact that there is only a single expense for a website that will take a few months to build.
Large Upfront Costs
Even though it is a single expense, it is made upfront and as a result is usually quite hefty.
Doesn't Account for Change
Additional features or unforeseen requirements may create unexpected cost increases or extend the timeline past the set-upon date. Also, if any changes are needed once the site is complete, you'll need to pay for those new features.
Results are not User Driven
The project will have a lot of input from the agency, the developer and the client, but next to none from the actual user or their website interactions.
The Final Result is Months Away
Your best hope is that your visitors don't mind the 'under construction' graphic on your website for a few months.
2. Growth Driven Design
GDD is new to the party; it's a new way of approaching website development, that seeks to reduce the associated headaches by reducing the overall risk. Let's see why this approach to web design is so unique:
Cost is Spread Out
Due to the nature of the process, there is no need for a large upfront payment. The total expense is paid in smaller increments each month.
Quicker Initial Launch
GDD uses a Launch Pad Website that can be quickly implemented, so you don't have to spend time on features that may or may not be relevant or useful to the user.
User Data Dictates Decisions
Due to the speed of the Launch Pad process, you can start tracking user data ASAP. This gives you the opportunity to take both your goals and your users into account, and find the best solutions for your website.
Learning and Updating Monthly
The quick launch also means that your site will continually improve each month - allowing it to easily adapt to new discoveries or unforeseen issues.
It may feel as though there is no real timeline set-in-stone, in terms of deadlines, etc. Often having a continual monthly expense can be more daunting than just tackling a large payment at the beginning.
A New Process
GDD is new, different and unfamiliar. Willingness and patience will be key as you learn the new process as the project progresses to your desired outcome.
So, don't let one of your important marketing and sales assets sit there growing stagnant. Get onto optimising your website using a development approach that is best suited to you!