10 factors to consider when deciding who will build your website
So, you need a new website. Maybe you’re considering hiring a web developer, or perhaps you’re eager to invest in a full-service marketing agency.
An online presence is non-negotiable for any business, serving as your virtual storefront and the first interaction between you and your potential customers. At Focused Marketing, we are often approached by clients who want to create a new website but are wondering who to help them.
A full-service agency may be a larger upfront investment than hiring a web developer, but prices must be weighed up against which route will deliver the best value for money against your requirements. A developer and an agency can both build a website, but an agency will also ensure it does what it’s meant to – whether that be educating, engaging, or converting visitors into customers.
Below, we outline ten factors with crucial questions to ask when considering a developer vs. marketing agency. If you or your developer can’t answer these, you may need to talk to a marketing agency!
1. Goal-oriented conversion, customisation and optimisation
The first thing to consider is the purpose of your website. An agency will take the time to get to know your business and ensure it’s fit for purpose. Marketing agencies employ conversion optimisation techniques, encouraging actions that align with your business goals, be it making a purchase, completing a form, or subscribing to a newsletter. With a collaborative team of creatives – graphic designers, website developers, UX/UI specialists, and copywriters—they ensure that your online presence is visually appealing and optimised for a seamless user experience.
From layout and design to content and functionality, agencies customise every aspect of your website. Graphic designers create elements aligned with your brand identity, web developers ensure a responsive interface, UX/UI specialists focus on user experience, and copywriters craft persuasive content guiding visitors toward conversion actions.
- What strategies are in place to continually refine and improve the conversion rate over time?
2. Capturing attention (within seconds)
You have about 8 seconds to capture the attention of a visitor before they leave your site. Marketing professionals within an agency understand this and will craft your website content to engage upon first glance.
“Users often leave webpages in 10 – 20 seconds, but pages with a clear value proposition can hold people’s attention for much longer. To gain several minutes of user attention, you must clearly communicate your value proposition within 10 seconds.” – Jakob Nielsen
- Do you know how to optimise your homepage to deliver a compelling message?
- Are you using visual elements to resonate with your audience within those crucial seconds?
3. Creating lasting connections
Visual appeal is your secret weapon against fleeting attention spans. A design that is both unique and memorable ensures visitors don’t just pass through but forge a lasting connection with your brand. Think of your website as a visual storybook – each page should unfold a narrative that captivates and leaves a lasting imprint in the minds of your audience. Marketing agencies don’t create websites alone, they are experts at creating experiences that resonate.
- To create a lasting impression, how will you ensure your website design is aligned with your brand guidelines?
4. Tailoring content for clarity and engagement
You might know your product inside-out, but struggle with effectively communicating the benefits it offers. A marketing agency not only creates or refines your content, but tailors it for your target audience.
- Do you have a content strategy that will connect with your audience?
- How will you use content optimisation techniques to enhance search engine visibility and user engagement?
5. Ensuring accessibility and audience-centric writing
Creating content for an audience unfamiliar with your industry requires a delicate balance of education and persuasion. Many brands struggle to write for an audience who is unfamiliar with their products or services. Marketing agencies have the skills to bridge this gap, ensuring web content connects with the target audience. This extends beyond language – website design and content must be tailored to ensure accessibility for all users.
- How well does your content resonate with your audience personas?
- What strategies do you use to tailor your messaging to different audience personas?
- How will you ensure content and web design is inclusive of all users?
6. Elevating your website from existence to discovery
A developer might build a functional website, but without on-page SEO, your site might get lost in the digital noise. Marketing agencies optimise your website for search engines, making sure your potential customers can find you.
“Think of your website as an island, metaphorically speaking. You may have a beautifully designed and constructed virtual destination, the only problem is your guests can’t find you on the map! Unless you provide a way for viewers to easily find and travel to your website, there is no point renovating it.” – Jessica Bye, Focused Marketing
- Beyond the development phase, how will you optimise your website for search engines?
- How do you ensure your website is discoverable and easily navigable for your target audience?
7. Creating a seamless path to conversion
Every piece of information on your website should have a purpose and a placement. Understanding the path your visitors take is crucial in ensuring that every piece of information contributes to the overall user experience.
Marketing agencies strategically organise your content, guiding visitors through a journey that leads to conversion.
- When organising your website content, have you mapped out the customer journeys?
- According to Contentsquare’s 2021 Digital Experience Benchmark report, the average time on a page across all industries is 54 seconds.
8. Highlighting your brand’s USP through strategic messaging
Your unique selling proposition (USP) and key messaging must convince and compel your audience. Marketing agencies delve deep into understanding the intricacies of your business, conducting analysis to identify what distinguishes you from the competition.
Through understanding the nuances of your products, services, and values, a marketing agency will assist you in ensuring your value proposition shines.
- Are you confident that your website effectively communicates your USP?
- How have you refined and communicated your USP to ensure that visitors understand what sets your business apart in the competitive landscape?
9. Creating an empowering user experience
We’ve all used websites that are unclear or downright frustrating. Visitors should effortlessly glide through your website, finding information intuitively and without friction. How visitors interact with your site greatly impacts their perception of your brand.
A marketing-focused approach optimises user experience, ensuring seamless navigation and encouraging visitors to explore further and ultimately convert. Marketing agencies employ user-centric design principles, strategically placing elements to guide visitors with clarity. This isn’t just about making navigation easy; it’s about creating an experience where visitors feel empowered and in control of their journey.
- How will you design and evaluate your site’s visitor journey?
10. Your website is never finished!
The digital landscape is ever-evolving. A marketing agency doesn’t just build your website and leave; they continually analyse data, gather insights, and make improvements to ensure your online presence stays effective and competitive.
- How will you continually improve your online presence? What measures will you use to respond to changing trends and user behaviour?
A developer can create a perfectly functional website, but it takes a marketing-focused agency to transform it into a powerful sales and branding tool. Remember, your website isn’t just a digital placeholder, it’s an interactive experience that can make or break your business. Invest wisely, because the right website isn’t an expense – it’s an investment in the future success of your business.
For more information and assistance with your marketing strategy, contact our team at Focused Marketing and make it happen!