As I mentioned in my last article “the importance of planning the website development” that, the website plays a major role in Marketing and Sales. Hence, like any other marketing activity, the website planning should start with Audience Segmentation.
Segment target-audience based on their interest, demographics and behaviour
Consider the example of a shopping mall. A customer enters your shopping mall, the first thing he will do is start finding the things he is interested in or finding things that will benefit him personally. What will happen if he doesn’t find anything suitable for him or it was there, but he couldn’t find it? He will leave the shopping mall.
Similarly, a target customer belonging to a particular segment comes to your website, but he doesn’t find what is relevant to him, he will leave your website.
Hence, it is important to find audience segments. How to do that? Like any other marketing activity, create audience personas that closely resemble your target audience.
But, this can create too many segments, and addressing the needs of all those segments can create the website more complicated.
Prioritize the audience segments
Once your segment the audience, you have to prioritize which audiences do you want to address first and which can be omitted. Only the business owners, CEO, Marketing head or any other decision-maker in the company can take this decision. Your graphic designer or website developer can not decide this as he may not have a complete idea about your business. Take this decision wisely.
Prepare the structure based on the audience behaviour
This is an important step. This is where you will decide the sitemap, features and functionalities for the website.
Identify how and for what purpose your each audience segment will visit your website and which page on the website will satisfy their needs.
E.g. For an Interior designer company, there are two audience segments.
- People who are looking for an interior designer – this is a warm audience, and they will look for past projects, testimonials, designs, awards & recognitions, etc.
- People who want to solve small problems in the house – e.g. Someone is looking for a solution that will fix the top ceiling in his apartment. Such things can be covered in the blog – this is a cold audience. They are not directly looking for your services, but they might think of hiring you by checking the solution that you have shared in the blog.
Based on these two segments, we can prepare a rough sitemap like this:
- Home page
- About page
- Services – subpages with a separate page for each kind of service
- Projects – subpages with a separate page for each project
- Awards and Recognitions
- Contact Us
The above sitemap is suitable for an organic audience. What if you want to address PPC audience also. In that case, you will have to create a separate landing page for the PPC audience which will be optimized for lead generation. It is up to you whether to put this requirement in the current scope or not. But it has to be discussed in the early stage.
Make a list of all the existing resources
This is an important task before starting any kind of project. You must prepare the list of all the resources you already have. This way you will be able to utilise your existing resources and it will save your team and money.
Define goals for your scope.
What is the purpose of the “Projects” page? To showcase your work to your potential clients. The goal would be to create a page that will load images in gallery format with some caption and the page should be optimized for speed without hampering the pixel quality of the images.
The above goal clearly gives the direction to the designer, content writer and programmer on what is the final outcome. This reduces the rework, save costs and time and delivers the project on time.
Like this, prepare a plan for the website.
In the next article, I am going to talk about the importance of prototyping tools.
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