What issues should consider before updating my company website?


I'm working on an update to my company's website. Mostly it's just to freshen up the look. I'm pretty happy with the organization.

I'm planning to hire someone but I figured there were probably a bunch of "questions I should answer", like "What are your top 5 goals?", will it have eCommerce, etc. I think I have it all covered but I'd like to see a comprehensive list to I know if I'm overlooking anything.

I found a few such "questionaires " but I'm looking for something more comprehensive.

Here's what I've got on my generic list so far:

Masthead (which appears on all pages)

  1. Communicate that what we do within 10s (we make speech & language therapy software for home and clinic use).
Home Page
  1. What are the top 3 "most wanted actions " (things we want the customer to do)?
  2. What do we want to communicate to the customer within 30 seconds (List up to 5 things, and rate in importance (perhaps assigning up to 100% points among the 5 things. E.g., #1 might be 92% importance and the other 4 might be 2% each)
  3. What is the site tree /organization of site? (Try to keep it shallow.
  4. What mood or feeling do you want the site to convey? (empathy, authority, "hi tech", dependable, etc.).
  5. What are some other websites that you like, and what about them do you like. What elements would you like to include something similar to in your site. (E.g., "this style of drop down menu, photos of customer using the software, etc.)


asked Feb 3 '12 at 08:31
Clay Nichols
737 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll
  • Start with your list, and let us see what you are missing. – Mhoran Psprep 12 years ago
  • Yes, start with your goals then add the goals of your (potential) customers. – Dnbrv 12 years ago
  • Your new website will be highly ineffective if you can't communicate who you are/what you do in less than 5 seconds from the header, and about 10 or 15 seconds in the body of the homepage. Just keep that in mind: visual judgments are made within a second of page load, and the next few seconds are most important. Some of your visitors probably won't stay even 20 seconds. – Matt 12 years ago

1 Answer


This is a lot about you : What you want to accomplish. What you want customers to do. What you want to communicate to the customer within 30 seconds. What are other websites you like. What mood or feeling you want to communicate.

These are all nice. Especially if you are the audience of the site.

If not, and your prospective customer is the audience for the site -- it might be worthwhile to flip all of these questions around:

  • What do your prospective customers want to do when they visit your site?
  • What do they need to find quickly?
  • What do they want to hear in the first 30 seconds?
  • What are other sites that they like?

Our company calls this a "market-centric" approach. We find it a very powerful shift in mindset that really makes a difference. Consider it!

Then, your list can also be improved by adding:

  • The conversion process from lead to customer -- how are customers supported by the site every step of the way.
  • How it is part of the overall operations -- where and how does the marketing site work with your other tools (like your CRM)
  • What are the ways you will test different models, stories, arguments, contentions and assumptions in the live market?
answered Feb 4 '12 at 09:59
Joseph Barisonzi
12,141 points

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