Digital transformation does not happen simply overnight. It takes a great deal of research about your target audience and goals for your business, as well as a long-term commitment to maintenance and continual improvement. It may take time to move the political needle in your organization, or to find the right champion for your cause. However, with commitment, digital transformation CAN happen. One of the main successful ways we see digital transformation occurring is from a well-rounded digital strategy. At Vervology, we compare digital strategy building to building a house:
Research and Assess
The initial and arguably most important phase of a digital strategy is research. Much like how you would survey an area before building on it, it’s important to gather as much information as possible about your current digital footprint and starting to think about how your website or overall digital platform might stand out from the crowd. See where things are working well, and see where things need improving.
Gather IP and Branding
What will the house look like?
Continuing in your research, it’s important to consider what your vision is for the site. You wouldn’t build a house without blueprints, so start sketching out your plans for your website. List keywords people might search for when finding your site. Do some domain name research. Map out where your visitors will want to go, what tasks they may want to complete, and what potential content will attract their attention.
Structure and Position all the Pieces
Architecture; make the plan
A continuation of the last step, this involves making more concrete decisions about how your site will come together. What is the layout? What are the pages titled? How will your brand be represented in a visual website theme? Take time to think about the user’s experience when they come to your site from start to finish from their point of view. These are some of the final stages before concrete implementation.
Build the Foundation
Avoid structural collapse
This refers to the “skeleton” version of your site. Lay down the main pages your site will require, and begin filling out menus. This step involves creating the structure of your site to build on top of.
Build the Structure
Build the roof and walls
Continuing to build on what was accomplished in the last step, add structure to your pages in the form of headings and titles.
Apply the Branding
Paint the walls
What makes your site unique? What is your style? Much like how you would personalize your house with your own individual design and colors, the design of your site should be a reflection of your business: eye-catching and aesthetic, while not going too far. Simpler is almost always better when it comes to the web. Keep an eye on your site’s performance as you add layers.
Add the Content
Put in basic furniture
A bed, couch, and end tables help begin filling out the empty spaces in your house, much like adding content to your website. Your mission statement, explanation of your services, and list of team members are all ways to begin this process.
Put out a for-sale sign
It’s time to let everyone know that your site is up and running! Start spreading the word about your business and begin generating traffic.
Add Rich Content and Life
Replace basic furniture with high-quality items
You’ve started creating interest in your site, so now it’s time to revamp that content. Consult with an expert, develop a plan to create high-quality content and the frequency of release to the public. This brings us to the next step, feedback.
What are people saying when they view the property?
By now, you have had time to see what people think about the design, layout, and content on the site. Are your customers interested in a weekly blog, or perhaps they want to see your social media feed right on the website? Take this feedback and use it to make adjustments. After all, the site was created for them!
Refine Content for Messaging and Tone
Updates to match feedback
As time goes on, a clearer picture will emerge of what it is your target audience is looking for and what the target audience actually looks like and expects. Taking that feedback into consideration and implementing it will show your users that you value their opinion and will increase brand loyalty, in addition to presenting a much more directly targeted attractive front door and first impression.
Market and highlight the property
Now that your site is optimized for your target audience, it is time to further promote with advertising and word of mouth to allow even more people to find it.
What are prospective buyers/neighbors saying and doing?
Sometimes, the numbers speak for themselves. Utilizing analytics to see what is working and what isn’t will give you a cut and dry answer for how you can continue to improve. The answers and feedback analytics provide can be both surprising and interesting.
Adapt to the Market/Feedback
Add a pool (all the neighbors have one)
After checking out your neighbors’ properties, you may come to realize that there are certain ways to add value to your own. Do similar sites offer an order online option? Perhaps it’s time you do the same. Looking at comparable websites to see how they utilize their platforms and what works best for them is never a bad decision, much like examining comparable properties on the market. Just be sure to let your analytics and customer feedback drive your decisions at the end of the day, and be careful to not fall into a pattern of needing to “keep up with the Jones.”
Add Custom Functionality
Hire an interior designer to update the house
As part of your plan to continuously update your site, you may realize that there are certain functional aspects that you could improve. You may find that a bespoke web development solution will take your website to the next level, or that a mobile app would be a good idea. Maybe it’s even as simple as simplifying a checkout process. Either way, now might be a good time to engage a local expert to assist as your site matures.
Dynamic Content and Personalization/Targeting
Now that you know what your target audience is hoping to get out of your website, you can begin targeting them directly across other websites and social media platforms to make your content more personal to their individual wants and needs. Utilizing your analytics data can help with this effort.
Digital Transformation/Business Efficiencies
Build grandparents wing, internet-connected appliances, a new office
Your site is never truly done. In fact, at Vervology, we consider a website to be a living, breathing space that needs continuous care. It’s important to be open to adaptation as time goes on, since you will continuously get feedback as to how you can improve. Thankfully, when you have the structure to be successful, you can continue to build on what you already have to create the ultimate user experience for your customers.
Each digital strategy implementation is unique, and Vervology takes every individual business’s needs into consideration. Whether you’re in the early stages of planning blueprints, or are in the remodel phase, let us help you build a digital strategy and power your digital transformation. Our first consultation is free.