Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Evaluating Your Website - Part One of Six

By Reed Dillon

When I am asked to look at a website to see whether if it‘s doing its job, I evaluate it using several different types of criteria:
  • Strategy and Content on the site: What is the strategy behind this web site?
  • It’s Trustworthiness: Is it a website that you trust?
  • The Look and Feel: What is the site’s look and feel?
  • The Site’s Architecture & Navigation: How easy is it to use and travel through this web site?
  • It’s Readability: Is the text easy to read?
  • Search Engine Optimization: Have you prepared your website for good search results?

In order to have a fully functioning website, synergy and balance must happen between all of the elements. In a series of six blogs to come, I will be examining each of these elements above in detail and be asking associated questions. 

Strategy & Content  - Part One of Six

All websites must begin with a strategy and must have content. My definition of a strategy is simply a focused plan in pursuit to an ultimate goal and content is what exists on the website. Here are some questions to keep in mind when it comes to Strategy & Content.
  • What space or category does the website fill: commercial, professional, educational, public service, not-for-profit or personal?
  • Is the category obvious or did you have to do some investigating to find out what the site is really all about?
  • Why does the website exist?
  • Is there any good reason for the website to be on the web?
  • Does the website offer up content and information that is actually useful and valuable?
  • Does the website engage you, enable you, and/or introduce you to something needed?
  • Does the website first attract you and then convince you to take action?
  • Is the website’s information or content compelling?
  • Does the website introduce the visitor to information that was not known before?
  • Did the website offer a free incentive to download?
  • Is the website targeted towards a specific audience?
  • Does the site offer expert advice or a particular opinion?
  • Is the purpose and objectives of the website clear?
  • Is the site transparent with its information?
  • Is their call to action items on the site?
  • What action does the site owner want you to take?
  • Is the action that they are trying to promote obvious and easy to perform?
  • Where and which pages contain the most attractive or valuable content on the site?
  • Does the website do a good job of delivering the visitor to that page?
  • Is the website monetized in any way and if so how?
  • Does the website employ an automated response system or CRM?
  • If you fill out a contact form or send an e-mail from the website, is it answered promptly?

I welcome hearing your thoughts regarding Strategy & Content when evaluating websites. Feel free to post your questions and thoughts in the comments section below.

ABOUT Reed Dillon - After nearly two decades of experience heading the marketing departments of some of the industry’s leading modular manufacturers and earning numerous national awards, Reed Dillon is the owner of Creative Brand Content - a marketing consulting company. You can contact Reed at reed@creativebrandcontent.com or by phone at 540-488-2978. 

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