Building a new website is an exciting time for a company as well as for the people involved. A new website usually represents company initiatives like a new focus on marketing, new products lines or service offerings. But as with any part of brand building, the path to a great website is littered with critical decision making points that have to be discussed and determined by a company.
Production timelines, deadlines budgets, even design and other website components can be affected by the decision making process, or lackthereof, of a company. Surely, there is not a single company out there that wants to miss their launch date or go over budget.
Being a part of the thriving inbound marketing community, I’m not a stranger to the emphasis clients put on staying within the planned timeline for launching their sites. While there are some instances wherein a marketing company’s own production timelines don’t hit intended deadlines, what clients often miss is how they contribute to the delay by doing the following:
Decisions, decisions decisions… Launching a brand investment such as a site definitely comes with a whole lot of items to decide on. You have probably gone through due diligence and selected a marketing or website development company to work with according to your standards. While their role is to craft and explain effective strategies for design, development and marketing for your business, there will be a variety of options based on what your budget is, your competition, and your goals. Ultimately, you will have the final say and will have to decide based on what you think is the best decision for your company to make.
Indecisiveness is a fairly common problem if you have either a person in charge who is not comfortable making decisions, has no full authority to call the shots, or is not well-informed about the project, the brand or the goals of the company he/she is representing. Choosing the right point of contact to lead the project on your end to avoid any setbacks when it comes to making decisions. Pick someone who is great at absorbing information quickly and has the confidence, authority, and ability to make timely decisions and commit to them.
2. Involving Too Many People
Launching a new site sure is an exciting time for a company. In this exhilarating time of momentum and creativity, many companies feel the need to involve more people in this pursuit to secure a better end result. Contrary to this thinking, the truth is, the more people involved equates to more time wasted since it’s often difficult to get more people to unanimously decide on items that need client input.
The delay in decision-making causes the project to sit idle and depending on the parties involved, can even create friction and may lead to wrong decisions being made. To avoid this dilemma, I recommend setting up a clear decision-making structure from the beginning if you have more than one person involved on your end. Designate one person to take full lead of the project who will ultimately have “veto-ing” and “green-lighting” powers. Let the other individuals involved function as “influencers” and give the lead person full authority to make final decisions on their own.
3. Changing Direction Midway
This one is almost self-explanatory. Each decision made will require specific resources assigned and specific chain of actions to accomplish them. If the direction is changed after portion of work have already begun or are completed, it will cause additional time, and thus money, above the original scope. This can happen for many reasons. Usually, this occurs as a result of the combination of either of the first two causes, indecisiveness and involving too many people in the decision making process.
Striving to understand the strategy behind your chosen items as well as averting problems 1 and 2 will help you avoid this conundrum.
4. Not Trusting The Experts
Partnering with the right inbound marketing agency throughout this process is important because you will need to rely on their expertise to provide you with effective web strategies, relevant options, and sound advice on the direction to take. When going through this process you should keep in mind that the inbound marketing agency you have chosen has gone through this process many a times before. Trust their insight and their expertise. Let them guide you through this process. Not doing so can lead to delays, confusion, and low quality websites.
So there you have it, as you are preparing for your next website development project keep these tips in mind. I can assure you it will result in a higher quality end result.