Yes, you’re rushed. You’re busy. Time is rushing by and you’ve a list a mile long that needs completed now … but pour a coffee (tea, soda, water) and take just three or four minutes and see if you can answer these questions. They’re pretty important.
#1 — Who am I?
Look in the mirror. That’s you. Now look at your web site. Consistent? Does your site reflect your style, your essence? Or were you trying too hard to copy others so what is unique about you got lost in the process?
You know how you get a first impression when you meet someone and shake their hand? What vibe does someone get when they’re first viewing your site? How does it (you) present itself? Are you genuine?
#2 — Who am I talking to?
Think about someone you always listen to. They speak, and they have your ear. Do those that visit your site feel that way? Do they feel confident in your authority in your field of speciality? The days of “build a web site and they will come” passed with the old millennium. Choices abound. Do I know the people I want to speak to — do I have them clearly in mind — and does my site express that I understand?
#3 — Have I put up barriers?
Is my site sending subtle messages? Were you dragged into putting up a site so it’s the bare minimum and your visitors feel the cold shoulder? Did you try to do the site yourself so you don’t understand why people (on other types of computers) are getting error messages? Are the interactive areas of your site giving cues and feedback to help people? Does your site hide information or make it a puzzle to get from Point A to Point B?
#4 — Am I stale?
Picture a movie theatre that always plays “Jaws” (the original, of course; the sequels were horrible). Great movie. But how many times can a person see the same thing? Ticket sales would be pretty sad. Why would you do that to your website? Are you planning on never having repeat visitors? So why do they want to see the same thing each time? What are you doing to keep your site content from being old and stale?
And if you’ve got an established site, check out if your visual presentation and user interface (ack, sorry, techy term) and even the back end programming are holding you back from giving your visitors the right idea about you or your organization.
#5 — Where am I going?
Where do I expect to be in 1 year, 3 years, 5 years? My web site is a part of the body of my organization, a tool in my toolbelt, a key element. Have I asked myself how I can best utilize its strengths to help me get there — things I can implement now? And do I have a flexible structure that will allow me to integrate and expand where I see and/or want growth?
Can you answer these questions? If I can help you communicate the answers, let me know.