Why a good brief is the key to good web design

Website design briefHere at Direct Digital Solutions we work on a lot of business websites, for a lot of clients, each with different goals, requirements and expectations.

So when we get approached to do a site for a new client, we need to get the client to do some work first and provide a brief so we can scope the project and provide a quote.

The brief needs to focus on two main issues: What the site needs to look like, and what it needs to do.

Here are a few questions to think about when providing a brief to Direct Digital Solutions.

  1. Is this a new site, or is your current site in need of a redesign? (If the answer is the latter, then the next question you answer should be “why, what is your current site not doing”?
  2. What sort of business is it? What sets you apart from your competition? What problems do you solve for your ideal client/customer? What is your business history? Are you a member of an industry body? Why should people do business with you (via your site) than with a competitor that is just a click away?
  3. What is your business slogan? Tagline? Logo? Do you have any existing marketing material?
  4. Who is your ideal client/target audience? Gender? Age? Income bracket? Family background? Special interest? Where do they live? Be as specific as you can. “Mothers between the age of 25 and 45” is too broad.
  5. What is the budget? At least a ball park figure. This is important because it will help you find someone willing to work within your budget. The cost of a website can vary considerably, and there is no point wasting time looking at Ferraris when you can only afford a Toyota.
  6. Is there more than one person to deal with on the project? Who are the decision makers? Are there other staff members that will need to be brought in at various stages?
  7. What other sites do you like/dislike? And why? This gives the designer a great insight into your personal tastes.
  8. What must/must not be included on your site? Menu, content, images?
  9. Who will provide content? Do you need the designer to refer you to a copywriter?
  10. Do you need a shopping cart? What sort of payment options will you accept? How do you want to track orders? What privacy level do you need?
  11. What keyword phrases are people likely to use to find your site? How will you market your site? How long do you expect it to be before your new website brings you in new business?
  12. How long are you able to spend online answering enquiries? Do you need ongoing website content management? How do you plan to encourage repeat visitors and referrals? Do you intend to blog?
  13. What is the deadline for the site to be live?

So there you have it. As the project is being scoped, more questions might crop up, but these are the basics and answering them to the best of your ability will ensure a smooth relationship with your web developer.

If you need a new website, contact Direct Digital Solutions today at 02 9557 7623 or email us@directdigitalsolutions.com.au