Plan for Maximum Website Usability & ROI - Website Discovery Process

The Importance of Discovery

How to Plan for Maximum Website Usability & ROI

What is discovery & why it’s important

The main purpose of a project discovery is to establish the goals that will effectively solve the problems your company is facing. The marketing challenges that companies face today aren’t always as obvious as you might think. It is important to truly understand your company and its audience, and what brings value to that relationship. You must take into account the market which consists of current trends, competitors, industry regulations, effective media outlets, and best practices. A lot can be learned from what has already been done, what’s working, and what’s not. It’s always best to review previous marketing efforts before you try to begin something new.

Company Overview

Its best place to start with understanding your company. First and foremost, you must really understand your company and its purpose before it can accurately communicate these points to a potential client or customer. Once you understand the purpose of your company, establish the key stakeholders and the company’s main clientele. Assess the nature of their relationship and what value is being provided to the clients and how it’s being delivered. It’s important to analyze how your company currently operates. You’d be surprised how often a glitch in company operations can affect the marketing and the overall customer experience.

Industry Research & Competitive Landscape

Once the vision of the company has been confirmed, it’s time to figure out its position in the market. How will you reach your audience? What will you offer? Study the industry to understand how and where people consume your company’s product or service. Analyze your competitors. See what’s working for them, but also try to establish your unique benefits to distinguish your company from them. Look for holes in the market where there are customers with needs that are not being fulfilled.


Every interaction your brand has with a client leaves them with a distinct impression of the brand’s values.

Language Audit

Consistency is key when conveying your company’s brand message. Take inventory of all the language on your website, social media, print collateral, and so on. Look for consistencies and effectiveness, but more importantly where they overlap. After consolidating the effective verbiage used in your marketing, spend some time aligning your findings with the value your company provides to its audience. Remember to consider the tone of voice, the medium, and the circumstances in which the audience has been, and will be, receiving these messages.

Usability Audit

Every time your clients or prospective clients interact with your company you are providing them with a brand experience. It is important to understand the effect that this experience is having on them and, more importantly, what this experience says about your company. Review old marketing campaigns, sales pitches, fulfillment processes, website usability, social engagement, and sales patterns to ensure all everything is in line with the message your brand is trying to convey. Remember, actions speak louder than words. If possible, conduct customer and employee interviews to get an outside opinion, or at the very least, set up a customer feedback loop for future audits.

Analytics Review

In this day and age data is king; utilizing data is the best way to figure out what is really happening to your marketing dollar. Tools like Google Analytics, Sprout Social, Sitebeam & HotJar allow you to see how users are experiencing your site. Understanding peak times for visibility, session lengths, seasonal patterns, and campaign tracking will help you find success and repeat, but also turn previous failures into successes. These tools are also great for finding out what people really want and they allow you to address website usability and accessibility issues.

So, you’ve done the discovery, now what?

At this point, you have uncovered a wealth of knowledge about your company. Now you must present this data to the stakeholders. Pool all of the data together in a presentation with digestible bullets, compelling visuals, and actionable goals using practical information based on facts. It is important to enlighten the key stakeholders, confirm that the findings are accurate, locate the issues, and make sure everyone’s vision for the future of the company is in alignment. Only after all this can you create a strategy that will solve the marketing problems your company is currently facing.

Things to Remember

The purpose of the discovery is to understand the goals of the project. You can not market a company properly unless you fully understand its purpose and value. The environment in which your company operates should greatly affect its marketing efforts. What you say is just as important as how you say it. Every interaction your brand has with a client leaves them with a distinct impression of your brand’s values. Real data is the only way to analyze the failures and prove the successes.



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