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Considering a website or refresh? Start here.

We meet regularly with prospective clients who wish to discuss a new website or website update. Often, they are focused on technology, graphics and user interface. Whatever the reason their website is not working as well as it could, it is believed, falls into one of these categories.

It reminds us of an earlier time, years ago, when we would meet with prospective clients who would ask if we used Photoshop to design our work. “We don’t know,” we would politely reply and often be met with looks of wonder. We would go on to politely explain that Photoshop is a tool used to illustrate a concept, but it can’t replace thinking. And so, if a chosen concept required Photoshop to make it the best it could be, we would use Photoshop.

A few years later we could repeat that whole conversation by substituting the word “Flash.” Sometimes it wouldn’t be a question, but more of a requirement.

Why?

Perhaps the team we were meeting with was inexperienced in the area of branding and storytelling, confused about how the design process worked or felt it would be more impressive to justify the project internally through the voice of technology. Frankly, it doesn’t matter. The point is that technology still doesn’t replace thinking.

Today we often see Webmasters and IT professionals try to drive the web design process by focusing on technology. While we don’t wish to downplay the use of technology, which can enhance user experience greatly, we do feel it plays a supporting role to the most important consideration.

Similarly, as branding professionals, we know the power of providing a strong user interface and graphics and how they can compel audiences to take action. Still, these things play a supporting role in the web design process.

So what is the most important thing to consider when planning your website?

Content.

A site rich with content that makes your audience want to visit again and again is invaluable in connecting with the right audiences. There are no graphics, content management systems, responsive designs, search engine optimization or plugins that can overcome a poor plan for content.

As David Meerman Scott, author of “The New Rules of Marketing and PR” says, “I’ve seen many examples where site owners become so concerned about technology and design that they totally forget that great content is the most important aspect of any website.”

Having a well-defined plan for site content will make the job of designing the user interface and supporting it with technology easier. It will simplify the brand and reach the goals of the business. Decisions will support clear business objectives and organizational goals and will move you closer to the end game. Both design and technology work beautifully to connect users with content, deepen relationships and motivate advocacy.

Unfortunately, the saying, “If we build it they will come,” just doesn’t work for website traffic and engagement.

Is your company ready to embark on the exciting work of building or refreshing a website? Start with content and everything else will fall into place.


Since 1996, Argus has helped our clients bring their brand to life and attract the right audience. We are always happy to share our experience with you. Call or email and let us know how we can help you meet your business goals.

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