Design is hard. Design is also easy. It all depends on what happens in between the beginning and the end of the project that determines which.

If you’re a client and you’ve never worked on a project with a designer before, I’m sure the idea is incredibly intimidating, especially if you don’t consider yourself to be a “creative” person. If you have worked with a designer before, then you already know some of the challenges involved and how much effort it takes to keep the project on track.

Know Your Why

As the beginning of my creative brief states, “the foundation of any successful project is communication” and it’s this communication that helps define what success looks like at the end of the project. So here are some tips to help keep your project from losing its way:

Know why you’re (re)designing your website.

There are many reasons to redesign your website. They can be subjective or objective reasons, but it’s important to know the difference and be able to communicate that to the agency or designer with whom you’re working. Are you just looking for cosmetic refresh of your current site? Or are you trying to make it more mobile-friendly? Do you want to increase the amount of traffic you get to your website? Or do you want more people to fill out a particular form on your site?

Having a list of reasons why you want to redesign your website and talking them over with an agency can help you uncover what you value most in from your website or marketing project.

Know who you’re (re)designing your website for.

At the core of everything that we do, we do it for the service and the benefit of our clients. So in redesigning your site, hopefully you’ve employed the use of Buyer Personas to make those decisions. For example, if you’re using Google Analytics to see that the number of people visiting your site from a mobile device has increased and you don’t have a mobile-friendly website, that would be a great reason to redesign your website.

Let’s say you’re getting a lot of traffic to your site but no one is buying anything or contacting you. Perhaps the buyer’s journey isn’t clearly laid out and visitors to your site just aren’t sure of what to do next.

Working with a designer can help you know a little bit more about who your audience is and what it will take to get them engaged.

Know what a successful project looks like.

A successful web design project should be more than just how pretty it is or how good it looks. It should solve a specific business problem for you. Perhaps it’s simplifying a portion of the sales process for you. Or maybe your goal is to improve on a specific, measurable metric. The most successful projects should have S.M.A.R.T. goals attached to them. For instance, instead of the goal being something vague like “increase traffic to my website”; a better goal is written like this: “increase traffic to my website from 900 visits per month to 2,500 visits per month in 6 months”.

The more concretely you can define what a successful project looks like, the easier it is for the agency or designer to offer solutions to help achieve that goal. An insight assessment is a great way to define those beginning benchmarks.

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