With operators in every industry seeking to maximize the efficiency of all business processes, agile methods and project management philosophies have become extremely popular over the last several years. From manufacturing to software engineering, every industry has been impacted by some form of iterative and responsive management. In online marketing and website design, the trend has been upheld in the form of growth-driven design. In this blog, GoingClear Interactive explores the steps of agile growth-driven design approach to responsive web design, how the process compares to traditional website design, the impact that it has on a company’s ability to convert sales, and how the firm can help you realize the same results with your website.
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Taking An Agile Approach to Your Website Design or Redesign
There are three key stages to the growth-driven design process, and once you understand the purpose behind each stage of the process, it’s hard to imagine building a website using any other methodology. In the next three sections, we’re going to discuss the strategic stage, the launchpad stage, and the continuous improvement stage, in order to provide a proper roadmap for the path forward.
Strategizing for Success
Before a single piece of code is written on the backend of your website, we have to first consider the strategy behind what we’re trying to accomplish with the website. We want to start with the objective of the site, so that we’re not constantly revising our vision of what we should be trying to accomplish later. A clear and concise vision of the way forward leads to less confusion and a more focused final product. If we’re building a marketing site for a local small business or a redesign of a small to medium-sized business, we want to make sure we are laser-focused on the services or products we intend to offer to our customer base.
Speaking of our customer base, we must approach the site from the start with a focus on customer’s needs, the problem we’re trying to solve for them, their pain-points, and how we intend for the customer journey to address those customer needs. This portion of the strategizing process is extremely reliant upon data and research to shape how the website will look, what approach to take in your inbound marketing landing pages, and the types of sales conversion strategies you need to be ready to employ throughout the website.
By focusing at this stage on who your target customer is and how to best appeal to them, the following stages of implementation and tactics will flow naturally from the foundation that you’ve established.
Building a Launchpad Website
In entrepreneurial terms, the second phase of the growth-driven design process is to create a launchpad website, which will basically be the website equivalent of a minimum viable product. Because you’ve done extensive road mapping and research as to how the customer journey should look up to this point, and what elements must be included in order to create that journey, building the launchpad site is intended to be a quick and painless ordeal, with the hard part to come later.
When we say “minimum viable product,” the launchpad website is intended to be focused on at most five high-quality pages that meet stakeholder requirements and can both deliver on the value of your brand and that will have the most impact on customer traffic. If you’re building a site from scratch, your goal is to build out from these primary pages. If you’re transitioning or migrating an existing website, it’s crucial that all pages you intend to bring into the design are edited to match the new visual style and that they don’t detract from the roadmap you’ve established. Your ultimate intent is for the launchpad to be a foundational site that can quickly and easily be scaled and optimized, but from the start has all of the intended and necessary features to create and guide the customer journey, as outlined by your strategic goals. Most importantly, it is built around effective data collection. A quick check under the hood for the following elements, and within a very short amount of time your site should be launched and live.
- SEO objectives should be well-established on key landing pages
- Content should flow naturally into wireframed prototype layouts you’ve already designed
- Complete testing for browser compatibility and page loading speeds
- Test links and ensure metadata are in place
- Implement heatmaps and screen recording
Data-Driven Continuous Improvement
Once your launchpad site goes live, that’s when the real work starts. The agile web design approach up to this point has been intended to help get a product to market quickly in order to start generating leads and sales. However, it was intentionally incomplete, so that we might over time hone and improve that product based on client interaction, and the resulting conversions. This is the iteration phase, and will generally consist of a pre-established time period during which data is gathered and performance assessed, followed by another round of strategizing, where updates and changes to the launchpad site will be made and a new version launched.
Advantages Over Traditional Web Design
Websites that aren’t built according to the Growth-Driven Design model are risky and based on assumptions made prior to the website’s launch. Because they are intended to be built and launched with little future improvements, they can be both costly and require large amounts of time and resources, with no guaranteed return on that investment.
On the flip side, when we take the growth-driven design approach, we are delivering a very basic framework at the start, but that framework has been well-planned out, and intentionally minimalistic so that down the line, we can assess the collected data and only add functionality and features that users need. Your ROI in that case is much higher as you’re making changes based on improving conversions.
The Growth-Driven Design Model is all about making decisions based on data, so we’d be remiss if we didn’t show you how the approach can lead to improvement and growth of your key metrics as quickly as in the first six months.
We Provide Responsive Web Design for Massachusetts-based Small Businesses
Whether you’re a small, well-established company in Boston or just getting started, GoingClear Interactive has small business website design packages that will meet your business’s specific needs. Still have questions about our approach to growth driven design and what it could mean for your organization’s website design process in the future? Reach out and let us know you’re interested in collaborating on website design and development, and our team will be in touch.