Look beyond design & build
Most web designers think their job is to design and build websites, but that is just the beginning. A successful site is reliant on a lot more than the latest technology and design style. It needs a good team behind it. A team with a strong vision, ample resources, and policies in place to help them do their job. It needs strong web governance.
Create a clear web governance framework
Do you have enough people running your website? What are you going to do in-house and what will you outsource? Who owns the website and are they the right people? What is your policy on accessibility, content removal and more? A successful website needs a web governance framework in place that defines its role and management.
Too many web teams are so busy reacting to the demands of colleagues and dealing with maintenance that they never have the chance to think strategically. Unfortunately without this kind of strategic thinking, visionary leadership and a clear roadmap, even the best web team will fail to produce a sustainable website.
A website is never finished, it needs to be constantly evolved and refined based on an ongoing programme of monitoring. As you learn more about your users and business requirements, so your site needs tweaking. Do you regularly monitor the key performance indicators of your site and improve the site based on that feedback?
Think you cannot make these changes? Think again!
Are you a web designer at an agency who cannot get clients to take web governance seriously or are an in-house web designers who is frustrated by senior management? You might feel unable to bring about change. If that is you, watch this video.
Posts on web governance
Website management is not as simple as using traditional management techniques. The web is a unique medium and our processes need to adapt.
Many website owners have a “built it and you’re done” mentality towards their sites. But, a truly successful site relies on continual monitoring and iteration.
The web standards movement has taught us that having best practices and standards in place makes your site more effective. This doesn’t just apply to HTML and CSS, but all kinds of other areas.
Policies and procedures may not be the most exciting of topics, but they can help you get things done, avoid legal prosecution and prevent internal politics.
Web governance may not sound sexy but as Marcus explains it is a crucial part of your web strategy. Roadmaps are no good without a clear idea of who will implement them.
How do you decided what project to do next in your web strategy? Is your approach an ad-hoc one based on knee jerk reactions? If so you need a roadmap.
Before you can start work on improving your online presence, you need criteria by which to measure success or failure. You also need a way to judge what work is worth undertaking. You need trackable business objectives.
Because companies often have a confused view of their digital strategy it is often useful to bring some order to the chaos with a SWOT analysis.
A successful website is about more than design and build. Its about the organisation behind it. In this post, I explain how you can better understand those organisations, before helping them make the changes necessary to ensure their site succeeds.
A successful website is about a lot more than web design. But who is helping clients deal with these bigger issues?