Whether there’s a strong brand already in place, or promoting a new brand, building an effective website requires developing an understanding about the business and establishing brand expectations. Every element of the website must humanize and personify the business itself, personalizing the people behind the business, and project the brand image.
A website can only be truly successful if the objectives of its existence are clear. Once these objectives are clarified, the website organization content drafting processes can begin. Afterwards, the calls to action and other persuasive elements can be appropriately placed to ensure that online visitors follow through with the desired action.
I helped TLC Meals on Wheels create a successful website. Although they had an online presence, they were not satisfied with aspects of it. It did not reflect their strengths or their passion.
The first step of the process was to define the business goals that TLC Meals on Wheels wanted to achieve as the outcome of the website redesign project. These business goals became the clear objectives of the website:
- Make it easy for a visitor to donate money to their organization.
- Provide persuasive information that would encourage visitors to assist as volunteers.
- Streamline the application processing.
In order to achieve these objectives effectively, the website needed to:
- Provide sufficient information about TLC Meals on Wheels to be deemed worthy of visitors’ donations.
- Show the organization’s longevity and success in their mission since 1965 and the multitude of community support programs that serve the community.
- Connect visitors with the neighbors being helped.
Design elements are used to support brand and content strategy. After reviewing the website and content strategy objectives it was decided that the following elements would be incorporated into design strategy.
- Provide a slideshow and video introduction.
- Use photographs from volunteer and donation events.
- Incorporate call to action buttons: Donate, Volunteer and Apply.
- Engage on Facebook.
- Create a conversation on a blog.
On every page of the website, from the menu bar, special buttons, and many sidebar calls-to-action persuade visitors to get involved. This successful website is now a powerful business tool for TLC Meals on Wheels. It reflects the passion and sense of community of the organization and their volunteer and recipient photos successfully create a connection with online visitors, boosting inquiries, donations and volunteers.
So where does your company brand stand now? Do you think its as effective as it could be?