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How to properly prepare for your website discovery meeting

The website discovery meeting is the most important meeting throughout the entire website development process because it sets the course for the entire website.

It’s your opportunity to tell the person building your website:

  • What you want from your website (and what you don’t)
  • Who your customer is
  • Who your competition is
  • What makes you different; Why your customer buys from you rather than a competitor
  • What success looks like to you

Getting the website discovery meeting right means clearly communicating your wants and needs to the person or company building your website. Putting them in the best position to deliver the website that you want.

Understand your customer

The key to winning with your website is knowing who your customer is and what their needs are. If you understand what your customer wants then your website can show that customer why you are the best company to satisfying that need.

The celebrity customer

A good way to envision your customer is to think about which celebrity would buy your product or services. This helps clearly articulate who your customer is, if you sell shoes to punk rockers then your website will probably be a lot different than a website that sells shoes to lawyers.

Action point: Write down your celebrity customer(s)

General Website review questions

Below is a general list of website review questions, ask yourself these questions for each site you review as you work through this article:

  • Is the website content interesting?
  • Is it clear what the website is selling?
  • Would you buy from this website? Why?
  • Do you like how the website looks? Why?
    • Do you like the colours?
    • Do you like how the text looks?
    • Does the website have good quality pictures/video?
  • Do you like the overall tone (friendly, professional etc)?
  • Is the website asking you to take any form of action? e.g “Get in touch” or “Download this guide”

Review your existing website

If you have an existing website load it up, spend some time looking through the site. You can still follow along with the rest of the article.

  • What makes you want to rebuild your website?
  • What is it about your existing website that you don’t like?
  • Are there any aspects of the site do you like?

Action point: Review your website using the website review questions and the questions above.

Review the competition

If you know who your competition is then make a list of their names and addresses of their websites.

If not, head over to google and search for your product or service. For example, If you’re a wedding musician that plays jazz you would search for something like “Jazz Wedding Musician”. Make a note of any search terms you use as this will be invaluable for any search engine optimization later.

Action point: Review each competitor website using the website review questions

What makes you different?

Your customers want to know why the should buy from you instead of someone else. This is your unique selling point (USP) and it’s what seperates you from your competition. This can be quite hard to work out especially for newer businesses. It can help to think of the benefits of working with you.

A lot of the time working with you as opposed to someone else is the USP. You may offer the best kind of service or it could be your personal approach. Regardless of what your USP is, it is your websites job to tell your customers what it is through the design, imagery and content.

Action point: Write down your USP

What does success look like to you?

If you’ve completed all of the steps so far you should have a lot of valuable information that you can give to your website developer during the website discovery meeting.

The last thing that you should make clear to your website developer is what success looks like to you. For 99% of businesses the goal is ultimatly a return on investment; the website should make more than it costs. Your developer needs to know how your website should accomplish this. Maybe you want your customers to be able to buy online, fill out a contact form or sign up to a newsletter. Whatever it is that you’d like your website to do let your developer know.

Action point: Write down what success looks like to you

Put it all together

If you’ve worked through each of the action items above you should have a document that is packed full of relevant information that you can use in your initial discovery meeting.

The document that you’ve created will ensure that you clearly convey what you want, what you don’t and what success is. If you’ve found this article useful and would like to hear more about making your website profitable sign up to my newsletter below.