Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Create a Website Plan

If you’re working on a new website, I hope you’re building some momentum! You’ve found your why and looked around, so now it’s time to create a plan.

Once I created my long list of elements I loved from other people’s sites, I began to evaluate what I could implement. You may need to do what I did and create 2 lists: an “Elements I can Create Now” and “Elements I Want to Add Later”.

I decided I needed to made a concrete plan that I could pass on to the people who would be designing and building my site, so I started to divide my list of elements into pages for the site. I color coded everything just like a real map. Here’s a picture with my color-coding system and a sample of what the plan for one page looked like. The link for the PDF is below it if you’d like to print it for your own use.

website map pic

Website Plan

If you want to compare my plan against the reality of how it all turned out on my personal website, you can click here and look at the Speaking tab. You’ll see my site is still in progress. The sample video and MP3 download are still in progress. (Note: As Michael Hyatt says, you can’t wait for perfection. At some point you need to go ahead and launch!)

My sample is what I wanted one page to include. You’ll need to do a plan for each page. Once you have your techie people in place, they may have additions and suggestions, but with a plan, they’ll be able to better understand your vision and purpose.

If you’re struggling with what you want to include on each page, ask yourself, “What do I want the visitor to this page to know or do?” A friend shared that question with me when I was working on my site, and it gave me greater clarity. Try to put yourself in your visitor’s shoes. They don’t know anything about you, so fill in all the blanks.

Michaela, my wonder-intern, is posting some fantastic links on Facebook and Twitter this week with much more information about how to develop the elements of your website. Please join her there by clicking on the icons above and share with your friends!

Next week I’ll talk about creating great content for your site, and then I’ll move on to how to hire and work with your techie folks. In the meantime, how’s it going? Are you currently working on your site or upgrading your old one? What kinds of challenges are you facing?

Amy

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Comments

  1. Wow, great website! Puts mine to shame! I’m inspired to carve out some time and kick mine up a notch – ok, about 20 notches!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Typically, before a designer can start to price out a job, they need a full website plan. A good website plan should have a section for each page of the website you want, and also what content you’d like on the page. To learn more about developing a full website plan, see the Next Steps post Create a Website Plan. […]

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