Building a Relatable, Understandable Website: Client Case Study
A few months ago, when I got an inquiry about building a new website, I asked one of my usual questions:
“Why exactly do you want a new website?”
You see, the first thing you need to think of when getting a new website is not how it will be designed and look. You need to start with what the website should do, and therefore, why you’re getting or upgrading the website in the first place.
In her case, she wanted to un-clutter the information on the old website. Her business had grown over time, and all the little updates had created a convoluted and messy situation. Also, the content wasn’t as clear and accessible to clients as she would have liked. In recent brochures, the copy was updated, but on the website, everything sounded a bit outdated.
At first, I felt a bit unsure if she would be ready to make the changes necessary to meet her goals.
I knew how busy she was, taking care of her clients and running the business. And, being a client of hers for many years, I knew she delivered outstanding work. I even recommended many of my friends to her clinic.
However, one thing I’ve learned doing marketing and web design for nearly the past 10 years is that business owners can get in their own way very easily, even if they are consciously trying not to. They often resist making the changes that would be necessary to get their online presence to the next level.
It’s paradoxical: we can be quite afraid of what we most desire.
As it turned out though, she was indeed very willing to do the necessary work for the website. The more I was able to explain to her about certain perspectives on writing website copy and meeting the website visitors exactly where they’re already at, the more interested she became in getting the website done right.
One of the big challenges we had was to make the content as relatable as possible, while at the same time, conveying the right information in the right order.
Since her business is an acupuncture clinic, we needed to make medical topics understandable for pretty much anyone visiting the site. We needed to intuit and respond to the questions in people’s minds when they would be reading the website and considering trying acupuncture for the very first time. We even had to keep in mind that the visitors to the website might not be the patients themselves, but the children of older patients, looking for solutions for their parents’ medical conditions.
Eventually, we were able to create a new website by making small adjustments, re-doing certain parts, and writing entirely new parts.
Also, the design was re-done completely, and we moved her from an outdated web platform to Squarespace. Again, the process was always focused clearly on giving the right bits and pieces of information in the right order, so the potential client visiting the site can make an educated decision about choosing the service.
Longer story short: I’m pleased with the results we created and the new website will surely do its job to help her reach more clients more easily.
In addition, I created a strategic marketing plan for her business, which is essentially like the missing user’s manual for how to use your website, blog, newsletter, and social media effectively. The marketing strategy piece is what I find missing so often when people get a new shiny website, and they don’t know how to write their blog posts and newsletters in an engaging way.
After this project, I feel reminded how not only the big adjustments, but also the small ones, make a huge difference in the quality of connection and relation you can achieve with your audience.
That’s what a new website, and your marketing, is all about.
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