Okay, clearly a week late but that’s not bad….
While you should really go back and read the other posts (here they are all on one page: /category/purposeful-website/), what we were talking about is being purposeful in the reason for the website, what you want to accomplish with a website, how you design it, and who you hire to design it. All of this is done so that you are creating a website that severs your business like any other resource that you use and that it helps your business get to the next stage in its growth.
In this post, we’re going to talk about what the website is ‘talking’ to and wrap this all up.
Your Website Isn’t an Island
In previous posts last year, I talked at length about marketing and operational automation (remember the robot images – I mean, they were cool, right? /category/automation). The point of those posts was to talk about how automation technology had come so far that it was able to easily set up processes that could talk to different tools. Meaning, your forms could send data to your CRM and your CRM could trigger an email marketing campaign and so forth and so on.
At the core of all of this should be your website.
Your website should not be an island that you have to update but doesn’t really serve you from an operational point of view. It shouldn’t add more work but subtract it.
Where Does That Connect With a Purposeful Website?
If we’re being deliberate in the way that we build our website, planning all of this in advance, then what the website connects to should be part of the plan. In this case, we’re talking about workflows. We’re talking about user workflows, the steps that a user takes in your business to become a lead and, hopefully, a customer. Or they could be a customer already and you are a specific process that is the core of your purposeful website.
Let me give you an example: You have decided that your website would best serve you as a way for your current customers to place new orders. Most of your users are returning customers, your sales staff at this point is just taking orders not looking for new leads, and your website could be best used to make an eCommerce system to free up your sales staff to find new customers. In the process of designing that eCommerce system, where that data flows and what it triggers should be part of the design. If a customer places an order, it can do more than just trigger an email to someone in the company. It can update your CRM, create a new project in your project management software with the necessary todos to fulfill the order, launch an email marketing campaign to take the customer through the shipping and delivery process, and a whole host of other things that keep people on task, support the customer, and smooth operations.
And that’s just one example.
Tools, Tools, Tools
In the last blog post of my Simply Work series, I dug into the tools that can really help a company automate operations (link). I’ll let you go there and dig in but to just highlight a few:
CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a platform that allows you to keep all your customer data in one place. That can include records of orders. CRMs are great for customer service and for sales. They can also launch other pieces of technology as you further build a customer profile.
Email Marketing platforms allow to send out lots of emails to customers properly (not mass emailing people in Gmail), segment your customers based on actions, and provide more opportunities to connect with your customers. Email Marketing platforms can connect with CRMs to further grow your understanding of your customers.
Project Management Platforms (PMPs) allow you to track individual projects across the different stages of a project. This could be something simple as fulfilling a purchase to building a website. PMPs keep everyone on track and can help smooth out customer service issues. They could also trigger sales leads in the CRM if connected.
This Needs to Be Part of the Plan
If you’re going to go through all the effort to set out the design and workflows for a purposeful website, why wouldn’t you connect it to these and other tools to improve overall results? That’s why you need to make sure that you’re hiring someone who knows about these tools and can help you connect the dots. It’s the consulting part of being a Web Developer in that you don’t just help a company build a new website but design new workflows that ease pain points and help them improve the business. It’s honestly my favorite part of doing what I do.
Upcoming Blog Posts
Although this series is done, I’ve got a few one-shot ideas for blog posts coming up. The next one is going to be about domains and hosting, digging into what the difference is. I’ve had a few clients tell me that they didn’t quite understand the difference lately and I thought it was a good time to talk more about it. I want to write about ADA compliance and how that relates to website design. Also, I want to write about some of the technology that I use to build websites in a post or two upcoming.
If any of this intrigues you and you want to hear more about how this connects to your business, you can drop me a line through my contact form or you can set up a time to talk to me: https://cwtwebsites.zohobookings.com/#/customer/4321453000000026017