“Looks will only get you so far, sweetie.” Oh, how my mother was right! Especially when it comes to websites. Sure, your website design looks snazzy, but are you really getting the results your company needs? What were your website goals in the first place? Websites are critical investments for companies and imperative to their survivals in this digital age, but just because a site looks great doesn’t necessarily mean it works great.
A website that truly works and produces results requires intentional, critical thinking on the part of the company and the development team. If your executive team is not involved at this stage of the project, I highly recommend rescheduling to ensure they can attend. The decisions you make now will determine the trajectory of the website design and core functionalities, and the worst would be getting to the end only to realize it doesn’t accomplish the very needs you set out to meet.
A quick litmus test. If you answer “no” to any of these questions, then you know you have a design problem. Here are some key questions to ask yourself as you review your site. I recommend writing out your answers, sharing them with your team (including your designer and your developer), and keeping them as reference points for future iterations. (You can’t go wrong with keeping good documentation. You just can’t.)
Note: Your website will constantly be evolving, so naturally the process of reviewing and evaluating your website should be ongoing as well. So how do you do it?
LOOK AND FEEL
- Does it look professional?
- Is it appealing and appropriate for your target audience?
- Does it authentically reflect the look and feel of your business/brand? Colors, imagery, layout, etc.
- Does the design compliment the look and feel of your social media profiles? I.e. If you looked at them separately, would you know they representing for the same brand across the board?
- Is the message you’re trying to convey to visitors clearly stated and consistently communicated throughout?
- Is the call to action clear? Is it the right call-to-action?
- Does it include the right content?
- Is the content arranged/presented in the best order?
- Can users easily navigate throughout the site?
- Are the most important pieces of information easy to find?
- Do the navigation menus account for all important areas?
- Is there an obvious way for visitors to contact you on any given page of your site?
- Does the site load fast? Is it responsive to clicks, scrolling, window adjustments, etc.?
- Is the site easy to access, navigate, and use on mobile and tablet screens?
What has worked for you? Do you have a specific process for reviewing your website design? Please share your ideas with us below!