Setting Goals – Part 1 to creating a Website Strategic Plan
Every business knows by now that they need a website. But I am not sure if every business knows why they need a website. To get more out of your business website work to match your website initiatives to your business goals. By creating a specific role for your website in our overall business plan, you will give your website an opportunity to contribute directly to the growth of your business.
Our goal by creating a website strategic plan is to make sure our website resources align with the priorities of our company. Instead of separate website goals and business goals, we need to tie them together. Lets look at some typical business goals and see how your company website can help.
Fill your Sales Pipeline
Goal Example: We have defined a new target audience for new sales. In 2018 you will be marketing specifically to these markets.
If you have a specific target audience why shouldn’t your website be the key spokesman for those audiences? One of the comments I hear from business owners all the time is that they are afraid to go specific. They are convinced that their website will be visited by that one potential customer in a target audience that they have not considered and they would loose that one sale. Attention spans are short online and being specific and getting to the point faster could be a real advantage.
Do you have a piece of content that all of your customers would love to have? Something that they would download and keep through the year? Something that would help them solve a problem?
Ideas could include:
- An online calculator to help complete RFPs.
- A project checklist customers would use more then once.
- A handy guide to support resources either at your company or industry wide
Look for a piece of content or a website function to offer on your website that people would be willing to enter their email address in order to have. Once you have the email address, work on a series of followups: more download offers, email newsletters; which could prime the pipeline for a sales call.
Improve Customer Service/Retention
Are you getting calls/emails from customers asking for the same thing over again? Would posting more product info on the site make it easy for your support team to share this with customers? Could you get your money faster if customers could pay their bill online? What if customers could make re-occurring orders online with a click of a button? These are just a few examples, but allow yourself to dream a little. What would your ideal website streamline for your business?
In 2018, start thinking about the company website not as just a marketing hub, but a center for the entire business and making the site equally functional for your existing customer base. Consider this; how would your business change if you knew that your existing customers were regularly visiting the company website? How could this improve communications and how easy would it be to measure engagement with your product/service?
Goal: Establish yourself or your business as an expert in your field in order to attract new customers.
What better place to display your own expertise then your company website? Videos, e-books, articles, blog posts are all ways to talk about what you know and all of these items have value to current and potential customers. Not to mention they can be great for getting search engines to visit your site and shares on social media accounts. To fulfill this goal, you will want to create a plan to develop content on your website, organize it on the site so it is easy to find and then use your online networks to spread the word that it is there.
If you are a business with a sales team, I would also want to build these pieces for your team to share during the sales process.
Goal: You have a target to hire a certain number of employees this year and a goal to expand your team to continue the growth of your company in 2018.
What resources do you have on your website for recruits? Information posted on your website about talent you need could be easily spread via your social networks too. Are recruits visiting your website during the hiring process? Is that important to you? If so, what should they know from the website? To achieve this goal, you will want to make sure information on open positions is updated on the website in a timely manner. If your website was built on a WordPress platform, there are many great plugins that could be added to the site to help collect online applicant information and post openings. Would a more robust electronic application system help make hiring more efficient?
Free Tool for Website Planning
Do you have a written plan that would clearly define what will be accomplished this year and exactly what you are paying for? We have created our Free Website Strategic Plan e-book. This document will give you a great head start to creating your own strategic plan and getting all decision-makers and web team members working together on the same goals.