I am going out on a limb, (although not too far), and saying that websites fail for the same reason that anything else fails – there are no website goals.
And as every business or life coach will tell you, “when your goals are nowhere, you are sure to arrive there”.
Or, if you aim for nothing, you are sure to achieve it! LOL
Just wanting “a good website”, or a well designed website, is not a goal.
You put a lot of time and money into your website, so what about setting goals to make sure it was worth while?
The acronym of Setting S.M.A.R.T. Goals has just about been done to death by coaches and personal development gurus. But it remains an invaluable guide for achieving goals.
Pretty much everyone knows it or has heard of it, so I am not going to spend a lot of time going over that here.
This infographic sums it up nicely, and in much fewer words . . .
Your Customer’s Experience
Giving your customers an awesome experience where they want to buy from you, and buy again, and refer you to others, comes from setting real goals for your website and then taking action to realise them.
Just saying you want “a good website”, or a well designed website, is not a goal because it is not actionable or measurable.
It is not S.M.A.R.T. !
What is a SMART goal for your website?
SMART goals are:
Nothing new there.
SMART web goals for a website might include:
- Build email subscriber database to 10,000 – add 300 people per month for 12 months.
- Write (at least) 1 new blog post per week over the next 6 months.
- Make 1 new social media connection per day, (find out where your customers hang out – Facebook, LinkedIN, Twitter?)
- Get at least ‘x’ positive comments per week on that social media platform
- Increase the average time that people stay on the website by 20% in 3 months.
- Increase traffic to website by 25% in 4 months.
- Increase product sales, or sales of specific product ABC by 10% in 30 days.
- Increase product awareness to increase shop purchases by 15% by Jun-20xx.
Of course, using % figures in your goals means that you need to know what the actual numbers are to start with. Otherwise it will be impossible to measure success of the goal.
In fact, it is usually better to use the actual numbers in the goal . . . e.g.
- Increase sales of product ABC by $250 per day in 30 days.
- Increase sales of product ABC by 25 units per day in 30 days.
By specifying exactly what the website needs to accomplish, you will have a better focus on the content you need to create, and how the design and functionality works for your customer when they take the actions you want them to take on the website.
With goals that are measurable, you will know when they have been achieved, or when new, more or different action is needed to stay on track.
The amount of statistics available on your website are staggering, so measuring goals can be quite simple.
You can measure clicks, number of page views, time on the site, which pages were visited, (and not), number of signups, number of sales started online but not completed, source of traffic, etc . . .
Actionable / attainable goals
The wise old proverb says that the way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.
If your goal is to big, break it down into steps that are actionable.
There are many ways to spend time on your website. Make sure that they contribute to your goals, and to the bigger picture goals of your business.
And finally, your goals should have time limits. If you work better under pressure, make the time limits short!
An Extra Step
There is an extra step in the goal setting process that many business owners overlook.
Find out about your customers!
You are about to set a bunch of goals for your website, the success of which will largely depend on finding out what your customers want.
Our example goal to “Increase sales of product ABC by $250 per day in 30 days.” means nothing if product ABC is a VHS video tape . . . because in general people no longer by these.
Here’s another example: Most goals around your website and website traffic will be greatly impacted if your website is not mobile compatible . . . and there are still many websites that are not mobile compatible.
And goals around improving page rank in google will be affected if your website is not mobile compatible.
So, the first goal in these instances should be to redevelop the website so that is it mobile friendly.
Well, that is quite simple really!
What should you do now?
- If you want already have a business coach, discuss this article with him or her.
- Book in a time to discuss this article for your website with us.
- Want some help or ideas? Just contact us at Hotpink Websites now.
The new year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals.
~ Melody Beattie
Remember – Setting website goals