Why does your business have a website?
It's a question so fundamental that we don't really think about it. You have a business; you probably need a website. You built your website because it was the 'done thing'. You did it because you need to be visible to searching customers. You did it so you could have a new platform to reach out to your ideal customers. The point of you building your website, and indeed, any company looking to grow their business online, is to generate new leads and sales for your business.
Now, what happens when you commission a website rebuild, usually? Well, most of the time, a website rebuild takes months of time and waaay too many resources. As a result, you can end up with lead and customer generation slowing down because there's one or two critical things that they rely on that get caught up in the middle of the rebuild and can't be touched.
If this sounds all too familiar, I'd like you to take a deep breath, because I'd like to tell you about a rebuild strategy that offers the benefits of a refurbished website without the massive time/energy sink. It's totally possible. Let me show you how.
Only What You Need
A few years back, one of my mates from my hometown designed and built a house. It had a faster build time than anything else in the suburb, because it was designed to meet his needs; one bedroom, one bathroom/laundry, one lounge room/kitchen, and a single car garage. The house has developmental approval for additional rooms, but because they weren't needed at the time of building, they weren't built, and they'll only be built if the space is needed.
This strategy meant two things - the first thing, I've already discussed: Building the house was fast, and easy. The second benefit to be had from this kind of plan was that it was notably more affordable than constructing something that was much larger.
You can rebuild your website in a similar way to how this house was built. First, you develop an idea of the type of website that you want - how it should behave, and what it should be capable of. Then you work out what you want first, and what can wait until later. After this, you can launch your website rebuild - so to speak. By prioritising your website's 'want to haves', you can save a lot of time and hassle (and money), and then circle back to the other things that would be 'nice to haves' as time allows. There's much to be said of starting small and going from there.
The Benefits Of A Launch Pad Website
The launch pad website is what you commission first when you adopt the Growth Driven Design process. Growth driven design is fairly straightforward - you develop your website to grow, and prioritise your energy and efforts according to your feedback and results. It's a model designed to minimise the risks associated with traditional web design (like running over time and over budget) and continuously learn about and improve on your marketing based on website growth patterns.
So now that we've got an idea of how growth driven design works, how does a launch pad website fit in?
A launch pad website is the outcome of planning your growth driven goals and strategies. It consists of the most essential 20% of your website, which is updated and launched as soon as it's been completed. This strategy is one that prioritises a light, speedy update, where analysed perfection is delayed until after the essentials are live. Website features that are incorporated into the launch pad website are directly tied to how much effort they require to implement and how much impact they'll have on potential customers. This data is tracked on page launch to help indicate to your website development team what aspects of your website will need to be updated next in order to have the greatest impact. Because need is the primary motivator in the growth driven design process, it creates a much lighter and easier to manage growth strategy.
When you adopt the growth driven design process into your website, an overhaul for the online face of your business is light and fast, and changing aspects of your website will be far easier. Not only this, but because of the gradual changeover, you'll be able to continually improve your website as your business grows.
This model is less resource consuming, and frees you up to devote more time and energy to your other online marketing strategies, so that you can do things like focus on building your lead base, while you're also updating your website.
Good For Rebuilds Or Renovations
After you commission the launch pad website you work down your list of priorities, month by month, at a pace you can handle. This technique can be used to gradually replace all of the pages on your website or work side by side with your pages that are already performing well - it all depends on what growth goals you set at the beginning of the journey.
Now while this might seem like it'd deliver a clunky experience as your visitors navigate across web pages, in reality it's not such a big issue - because most of your visitors are finding your website with search engines like Google, and as a result, they're landing on the most relevant page of your website (which isn't always the home page, followed by a navigation party to get where they're going).
The growth driven design model for website rebuilding is better for long term solutions, as it allows for a flexible and well-thought out refit. Not only this, but once your major facelift is done, your website becomes so much easier to maintain. And cheaper. Did we mention that? Because growth driven design focuses on only one page at a time, it uses less of your precious time and resources, and has a lower up-front cost, making those updates that you keep telling yourself you'll get around to much easier to afford.
Since there's a faster update time on individual pages on your website, you'll be able to see the results of your work at an earlier point in time, and learn from those returns to keep improving subsequent pages. Sure, this model means spreading your costs over a longer period of time, but it also means seeing results from an earlier point, and benefitting from those results too.
Working With The Planning Fallacy Instead Of Against It
Planning Fallacy is this system error that humans sometimes have where we drastically underestimate how much time we need to complete a task. What's kind of sad is that we've grown to accept that traditional website rebuilds tend to blow out the allotted time/resources we've budgeted. The same is often true of houses.
Since growth driven design can take a large task (a website rebuild, for example) and break it down into smaller chunks, it's much easier to manage. When tasks are easier to manage, they're far less likely to take over everything, and your odds of getting the rebuild completed on time can become achievable.
Because growth driven design and the launch pad technique gives greater managerial power over a website rebuild, it's in our favour to work with the turnover time to adapt the changing needs of the website as updates roll out, rather than spend six months in isolation developing a whole website and then have something go haywire two days after launch. As a launch pad website allows for faster feedback, it's wise for us to work with the returning information to improve the next thing to be updated, as well as the small errors that can pop up in individual pages.
- The growth driven design process is a website rebuild strategy that starts small and builds from there
- The focus is on updating and rebuilding only what you need first, and then everything else afterwards at a manageable pace
- This model is lighter, faster, and cheaper to get started, and allows for faster and more accurate feedback on the performance of you website's new pages
- Because of the availability of real-time feedback, your updates can be improved as each new section goes live
- The launch pad website doesn't suck up all your time and resources, meaning that you can be freed up to focus on other types of lead and customer generation at the same time
Want to know more about the launch pad website? Check out our free ebook on the paradigm shift that drives this highly successful model - An Introduction To Growth Driven Design.