Setting Goals5:10 with Nick Pettit
Going from a blank screen to a finished website can be daunting. What's the best way to get started, and what are the rest of the steps involved? Good designers don't immediately start creating color palettes or coding a web page. Instead, they start by learning the goals of the site.
Question Ideas for Stakeholders
- How important is this product launch to the company?
- How does this product connect with the company's brand?
- How does this product relate to other products the company has released in the past?
- What does success look like for this website?
- How is this website different than our competitors?
- What problem is the product solving for customers?
- How would you describe a typical customer?
[MUSIC] 0:00 Going from a blank screen to a finished website can be daunting. 0:04 What's the best way to get started? 0:09 And what are the rest of the steps involved? 0:11 Good designers don't immediately start creating color palettes or 0:14 coding a web page. 0:17 Instead, they start by learning the goals of the site. 0:18 Then they consider the audience that will use it, and 0:22 finally, they gather the content that needs to be present. 0:26 It's only after this initial phase 0:29 that they're ready to start on the layout and visuals. 0:32 For many people, design can feel ambiguous. 0:36 There's no single path to follow, and there are no industry-standard procedures. 0:39 It's inexact and filled with decision-making. 0:44 That means that with every new design, 0:48 it's best to assume as little as possible and learn as much as you can. 0:51 And designing a website is no different. 0:56 The early phases of design have many names, 0:59 but sometimes people call this first chunk the discovery phase. 1:01 Because we're trying to find as much information as we can, 1:07 before we start designing something that doesn't actually fit the right needs. 1:11 A great way to start a new web project is to take a step back from the computer, 1:16 talk to people in your organization and ask, why are we building a website? 1:22 Another way to think about it might be, what is the purpose of our website? 1:28 Or what are problems that we're trying to solve by building a website? 1:32 It might seem like an obvious question, but the answers are not always so obvious. 1:37 You may want a site to increase awareness of your brand for 1:42 when people are making purchasing decisions in the future. 1:46 You could also what them to immediately purchase a product or 1:49 service, share your content or take any number of other actions. 1:53 For instance let's say that we're a web designer at a company, and 1:58 the company is launching a new product called Flamingo Friend. 2:03 It's a smart device connected to the Internet. 2:07 It goes in a front or back yard of a home, and 2:10 it tracks the health of grass by measuring hydration, pH level and other metrics. 2:13 Most project have what are called stakeholders. 2:20 A stakeholder is a person that has an interest in a project or 2:24 some level of involvement. 2:28 This could include clients, managers, coworkers or 2:30 anyone else that might have a vested interest in the outcome of the project. 2:34 When you talk to stakeholders, it's important for you to ask questions that 2:38 help you understand the organization strategy and their priorities. 2:42 In the case of a product launch, 2:46 you might ask things like, how important is this product launch to the company? 2:47 How does this product connect with the company's brand? 2:52 How does this product relate to other products 2:56 the company has released in the past? 2:58 For more questions like these ones that can help guide the conversation, 3:01 check out the notes associated with this video. 3:05 When you communicate with stakeholders they can sometimes be 3:09 too solution oriented. 3:12 They might propose that you design something a specific way or 3:14 include a particular website feature. 3:18 While that can give you some insight into their thinking, make sure that you 3:21 follow up those types of requests, so that you understand the underlying intent. 3:26 People tend to jump right into the details of building a solution, 3:31 like the color of a web page or the types of pictures to display. 3:35 But during discovery, your job, 3:40 as a designer, is to keep the conversation focused on defining the problem. 3:42 If you jump to a solution too soon, 3:48 there's a good chance you'll completely miss the goals of the project. 3:50 A quick solution might also not communicate with the audience effectively, 3:54 and you might mistakenly leave out important information. 3:59 In this case, we're just going to create one 4:03 page of what would normally be a larger and more complex website. 4:06 We'll pretend we've spoken to the product and marketing teams, and 4:11 they want us to create a landing page. 4:15 Typically, a landing page is a special destination on a website for 4:18 a marketing campaign. 4:23 This could be for the launch of a new product, the announcement of a sale or 4:25 a new PR initiative for the company. 4:30 A special URL like example.com/product 4:33 is an opportunity to create a design that's custom tailored to the campaign and 4:37 gather more accurate analytics data about the success of the campaign. 4:42 Let's say that after one or two meetings with the marketing team, 4:48 we've agreed that the landing page needs to do three things, 4:52 capture the attention of a website visitor, 4:56 educate visitors about the product and entice visitors to pre-order the product. 4:59 So with those three fairly straightforward goals in mind, let's move on. 5:05
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