Website Planning and Organization Errors

“Every battle is won before it is ever fought.” – Sun-Tzu

“He who fails to plan, plans to fail.” – Proverb.

Notice the trend? No one wants to lose their website battle. Certainly no one plans a website failure. Errors of this magnitude not only can destroy your on-line presence, they may sink your business. This is the last post of our Website Design Error series. Here we examine errors that occur when you fail to plan how you want to organize your site.

Error 1 – Basing Your Website Layout on the Structure of Your Company.

Creating your website based on the structure of your company, rather than the needs of your customers. Customers don’t care about a picture of your CEO on the home page, or whether they have to click on the ‘sales’ tab or ‘marketing’ tab to find what they are looking for. Think of why people may visit your site, and build the information architecture based on that! What are you trying to accomplish for your business? Sales? Leads? Awareness? Viral marketing? –Scott Bornkessel, owner of Springkeeper

Error 2 – Not Managing Your Website ROI

The purpose of a website is usually to make money in some way. Either through it’s marketing value or through actual sales on the web site. Companies are always interested in ROI. Any kind of work is an investment. Before making an investment, a good businessman (or woman) would estimate potential ROI. That means, if you can predict (or see in your stats) that your customers use 80% IE, and 18% Firefox, you shouldn’t invest into making your site look good on other browsers or portable devices, unless these 2% remaining can generate enough revenue to cover that investment. –Zoran Pucar

For more articles examining the Return on Investment of websites, check out are two related, and popular articles Are Blogs Worth the ROI for Small Business? and Better Website ROI.

Error 3 -Lack of Website Objectives and Planning

If the website has no clear purpose then what is the point in starting one? We see so many websites that are built ‘because we thought we should get one’ and they are not generating any kind of revenue for their owner. For business sites especially, there needs to be a purpose/objective to be achieved so you can actually measure how that site is performing. –Patrick Porter, Creative Director, Jade Creative

What common website planning or organization errors do you see on the net? Add your thoughts below.

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