How to Create a Consumer Centric Website
Launching a website is no small task. From coding and design to actually filling the pages with content, it can be easy to get lost in translation. Yes, it might be a little scary, BUT it is of the utmost importance to have a kick ass website. People come to us that want us to “do content marketing” for them, but they don’t have a modern, easy-to-use website. You shouldn’t drive traffic to a sub-par website.
First, let’s talk about what goes into launching a website:
- Brainstorming concepts
- Pooling websites we like
- Creating a wireframe
- Choosing design elements, colors and photography
- Deciding on must-have features
- Writing content
- Organizing content
- Populating the site
- Managing the site
- Sharing about the site
The list goes on, and on, and on…So that’s where we come in.
Citrus Social absolutely loves managing website development projects with the developers we have on our team from beginning to end. We help clients evaluate needs, brainstorm design concepts, fill it with creative content, act as liaison between client and developer, and ultimately launch a beautiful, turn key site that is the optimal Content Marketing tool. Then, we manage the website for you. And this is how we do it:
Crystal Clear Communication
The Need: Communication is one of most important functions in a website. There are a lot of parties at play when building a site: the client, a web developer, [sometimes] a graphic designer, content writers. Not everyone needs a hand in every piece of the project, and it’s important to use everyone’s time effectively and efficiently.
The Execution: Instead of the client worrying about communicating with multiple parties, all communication streams through Citrus Social. It’s up to us to decide when we need everyone in a room together, and who requires what information to get the job done.
The first product of a design project, is a website wireframe suggested by the developer and approved by the client and us. So then, you need to fill it with content.
We recommend using a cloud-based document sharing tool like Google Drive to act as home base for the project. For most website design projects we manage, we create Google Docs for each page that will appear on the site.
This allows a collaborative environment to populate and edit content and offer feedback. Google Docs is great for tracking edits, so everyone involved can understand and learn from the editing process.
The Need: If your brand has not already been through a branding process, we recommended investing in one before the launch of a website. Citrus has lots of resources to make this turn-key for you. Fonts, images, logos, words, paragraphs, headlines, blah, blah, blah. Another endless list. Long story short, a comprehensive brand kit should always be finished by a professional, credible designer before the launch of an A+ website design project. This way, your website will match all of your other marketing materials and be “on brand.” The good news: if your client has an existing website or a branding kit, there is a lot of usable content.
The Execution: A new website is great timing for a little brand boost. If you need one, Citrus Social will work with you to find the best design team for your needs. Take advantage of this launch by packing a creative punch with fresh content.
The Need: When you’re ready to launch, we suggest considering a soft and a hard launch. A soft launch is when your website is live, but you aren’t driving people to it yet. The purpose of a soft launch is to get everything up and running, and making sure everything is working properly on different computers, browsers, tablets and mobile devises. If one little widget isn’t working properly, it can throw-off the whole functionality of the site. It’s better we find these things before the hard launch date.
The Execution: First, we make sure that Google Analytics is set up and ready to go. Hopefully, the client has Google Analytics for the current site, so you can compare the new site to the old. It’s important to Citrus Social to show results. In fact, it’s one of our core values! By having analytics to the old site, you can show your client ROI. Websites aren’t cheap, so let’s make it worth it.
At Citrus Social, we’ve recently worked on two huge launches.
The Need: Adam approached us in 2014 wanting us to manage his social media. This is what his website looked like:
Adam is consistently one of the top performing realtors in Ohio. His website did not reflect his expertise, sophistication, and quality of work. The online housing marketing is huge, and he was losing credibility because of his site.
The Execution: Although we were ecstatic at the idea of working with Adam, we took a step back, and prioritized redoing his website. This is what it looks like today:
We dedicated the first 3-4 months of working with him to managing the redesign of his website. From there, we came to an agreement with Adam to manage his blog and social media. This is a prime example of carrying a project from beginning to [no] end. We managed the website redesign and now handle all maintenance of his website and social media.
To conclude, if your outdated website is keeping you up a night, consider a website re-do.
We believe that while social media can be a great marketing tool, your website should be your ultimate sales tool. If you’re investing in other forms of digital and content marketing, consider making your sales tool the best it can be. Citrus Social will help you figure out how to do that in the most efficient and functional way possible.