A few days ago, we talked about how the traditional web design process is broken - if you did not get a chance to read it yet, please head over and read it really quickly because it is really important to understand why the traditional website design process will not get you the best possible website and puts you at risk to over-spend for a not-as-effective-as-it-could-be website.
Over the next few weeks, we will be discussing a new approach to web design that will get you to your goals a lot faster and more cost effective. It is called Growth Driven Design!
When I heard Luke Summerfield, who heads HubSpot's Growth Driven Design initiative, talk about this topic on the HubSpot Partner Broadcast, I knew this is what we needed to do. We are already integrating some website updates into our monthly Inbound Marketing retainers because there are always updates that are needed and it simply makes sense!
Growth-Driven Design is guided by six fundamental principles:
#1: It is User-Driven
With the traditional web design approach, web designers receive some specs and operate in a bubble for three months implementing these into features. The outcome is entirely based on a bunch of assumptions and the web designer's experience. However, until you launch, you have no idea if the actual features you implemented and the combination of them that makes up your entire website help you achieve your goals. For example, what if your web designer wants to wow you with a trendy video hero board, but it later turns out your users hate it!
With Growth-Driven Design, you are solving one user problem at a time - you place each solution into the hands of the users very early on and test it! This way, you will know what works and what does not.
#2: Think Smaller
The biggest risk with a once every 2-3 years overhaul instead of a continuous iterative improvement is that you have to plan big and you can fail big. By launch date, you put several months and considerable resources into and there is no turning back now.
The secret to success is to think smaller: plan quick releases, which are more accurate to scope and plan, act agile and flexible, avoid waste and if you must fail, fail small!
#3: Start With A User Problem And Then Turn It Into A Feature
Growth-Driven Design starts with a users problem, instead of a set of features.
For example, if you are a dog walking company, your customers could feel they have a hard time trusting that their pet gets enough walking in, etc.-- they would love more control.
After some brainstorming, you decide (among other solutions) you could offer a mobile app that updates the dog owner when the dog walker checked in, picked up the dog, where on the route they are currently on and once their pooch is back at home, happy, fed and watered.
Basically, find the problem and brainstorm a solution and then turn it into a feature! Show this feature in wireframes or early prototypes to some of your users and see how they like it.
#4: Delivering Results, Not Features
Growth-Driven Design is not a featured-focussed process, but rather emphasizes the outcomes. A website is such a complex structure created out of varies building blocks: call to actions, images, text boxes, sliders, etc. However, there is no of knowing beforehand which combination of what features will get the users and us to our goals until you test or go live.
We cannot judge the work of a web designer anymore by the number of features he or she develops -- they have to be validated and contribute to your bottom line!
#5: Remove Waste & Increase Efficiency
As I mentioned earlier, Growth-Driven Design is based on lean manufacturing principles which aim to preserve resources, people's time and eliminate waste wherever possible through continuous user-driven improvement. It is all about efficiency.
#6: Take Action
Even though I hold a degree in computer science and I really enjoyed programming, I decided not to become a developer because I am quite a perfectionist. Now, I truly see the value in an iterative process instead of perfecting a possibly unused feature and waste resources. I know, we will never get to 100% perfect -- and we don't have to! We can get show it to users early on and then improve upon it. This is a long-term marathon; not a sprint.
Thinking About Using Growth-Driven Design For Your Website?
Schedule a 30-60-minute consultation with one of our website strategists to discuss how Growth Driven Design can transform your website into your biggest business development asset! Simply click below to get started.