How do you know that your website is up to par, and how do you know when it's time to scrap the old one and order a new one? It may sound like a nightmare mission but don't despair. Our web strategist Martin Sturelind shares his innermost tricks and secrets.
After taking on the role of web manager at various companies, Martin Sturelind has been working as a web strategist and consultant at Aimfor for the past three years. When analyzing a website, how it delivers and its flaws, only some people can measure up to Martin.
In line with the rapid progress of digitization in recent years, online competition has increased, leading to consumers and website visitors placing increasingly high demands on websites, which Forbes has reported on, among others. So, how do you really know when it's time to scrap your old website in favor of a new one? Martin explains:
– You can start thinking about a new website all the time, but before you start to work on a new website, it can be good to ask yourself the following questions:
- What kind of problem is the site supposed to solve?
- What is the vision for the new website?
- Which target groups do we have?
- What are our objectives and KPIs for the website?
– If you don't have the answers to these questions, you should find them out or get help to find them out. It is only possible to start looking at a new website with the answers to these questions. These problems and challenges can then be used to create a list of requirements for how the new website should function.
What should you consider including in the requirements specification?
– The requirements specification is vital to ensure you get all the functions and requirements on the new website. Set up, it is a list in Excel, where each row has a 'user story', and in the second column, you can indicate whether it is a 'need to have' or a 'nice to have'. It is important to remember that you should not be afraid to be as specific as possible in your requirement specification. Many people take it for granted that editors should be able to upload images to their websites, but even such a simple thing should be stated as a requirement. This makes it easier for the developers who will develop the site and everyone involved in the website project
What are the most common mistakes companies make when starting a web project?
– The most common mistake is that you want to start construction as quickly as possible, because it is only then that you can see and feel something. Many overlook that it is at least as necessary to gather requirements and information from the organization before getting started. The more time spent on information gathering, the more detailed the list of requirements will be, ultimately resulting in a website that covers all of our needs.
Ordering a new website affects the vast majority of people within an organization. How do you make the employees feel as involved in the project as possible?
– The most important thing is to make people feel heard. Therefore, I recommend you try talking to as many people as possible. Meetings are booked with those considered more substantial, and others can be reached via email and intranet. All meetings and contacts are not aimed at bringing in lots of good ideas, but it is more about avoiding being told, "Why didn't you ask me" at a later stage. The emergence of such questions can later become a brake block for the entire project, and we want to avoid that.
With all the pieces in place, it's time to launch the site, so how do we succeed with our launch?
– A successful launch is mainly about spending a lot of time testing the site internally so that you ensure that all the requirements you had for the website are met. Also, ensure that all tracking is in place and that you have a plan for handling the old site, e.g., redirects are set up correctly.
– When it comes to practical details, you should of course, never launch on a Friday or just before the holiday period - because things can go wrong - and then it's difficult if the person who can solve the problem is on holiday. Be sure to celebrate the launch with everyone who was involved in one way or another. Launching a new website is often a big deal for a business, so celebrate properly.
Finally, if you could only take ONE website to a desert island, which one would you choose and why?
– You can take the safe bet and say Google, right? It's the website I use the most. Should we look for a more pure website that I think is easy to use and does an excellent job with content and conversion? It has to be apple.com. I also find norwegian.com easy to use and good. If you compare, for example, Norwegian with SAS, it is much easier to book with Norwegian. Everything from searching for flights, seeing prices, and the entire booking flow. It can also come in handy when you're stuck on a deserted island!