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What Yoda Can Teach Us About Websites and Growth Driven Design

What Yoda Can Teach Us About Websites and Growth Driven Design
[lead]Yep, that’s right.  You are indeed seeing an image of Yoda here.  So, what can a 900-year-old Jedi Master teach us about web design?  Well, when it comes to this seemingly ancient process, his teaching is simple.  In order to be successful:[/lead]

“You Must Unlearn What You Have Learned”

– Yoda

Embracing Growth Driven Design to Elevate Your Web Presence

Let’s start by taking a moment to set the stage.  It has been somewhere between a year and possibly as many as 5 years+ since you last embarked on a website redesign project.  In fact, it may have been just as long since the site has really had any attention or updating.  When you consider the fact that your website should be your #1 salesperson, this traditional lack of attention becomes quite disconcerting.

While concerning, it is far from uncommon, mainly due to the experience many teams have endured with the web design process.  It might be safe to say that you did not enjoy your last website redesign project.  This was probably due to the fact that at its core, the traditional web design process is broken.  Historically, these types of projects have been static, with fixed launch dates that are rarely met with “moving-target” scopes and varying budgets.  It can be enough to make you want to pull your hair out.

The typical plan is to shoot for the moon and achieve the “perfect site” while hoping that it will continue to perform until it is time to redesign again.  Unfortunately, this hope is unrealistic.   Secondly, the approach has been primarily designer-centric, focusing more on past experience and educated guesses as to what will work well instead of focusing on the needs of the user and their experience.

If you have ever been through this process, you know just how frustrating and confounding it can be.  But, there is a better way to approach these projects.  We can improve the process and the results by pulling in ideas and processes from an approach known as Growth Driven Design (GDD).

How is GDD Different From What We Have Done in the Past?

At its surface, this approach to web design is fundamentally different in three keys way:

  • The GDD process all begins with in-depth strategy.  No guessing, no assumptions.  There is a deep dive to fully understand your organization, the market, competition, opportunities, and so on.  This allows you to know exactly who your target users are, sets the stage to develop their specific and individualized buyer personas, and maps the distinct way in which their journey will take them — without friction —through your site to the information that they need and want.  This critical and thoughtful first step will lay the foundation for a new site that will perform better, increase conversations, and build an emotional connection to your brand.
  • There is a paradigm shift from a designer-focus to a user-focus.  Beginning by infusing the results of the strategy phase, the wants and needs of key site users are integrated with your own internal business goals to design a site that will drive real engagement and more importantly, results.
  • No site is ever perfect and where it stands at launch is only a point in time, not its optimal state.  While this process will produce a site that is better than what you currently have and it will certainly outperform, that should only be the beginning.  Getting the site into the hands of actual users is key and we will use real-world metrics, research, and behavioral data to continue to iterate and improve.  It is real data that will drive next steps and leave you with an “evergreen” digital presence that will deliver results for years to come.

traditional vs Growth Driven Design, Image courtesy of http://www.growthdrivendesign.com/

Growth Driven Design is a radically different approach that not only produces a better website, it delivers a vastly improved experience for both the user as well as your internal team. A true win-win!

Over the next several weeks, we will dig into some of the most valuable steps and concepts in GDD to give you a clear vision of just how powerful and beneficial the results can be.  Stay tuned and prepare for an exciting journey, not to the Dagobah System, but to a web design process that truly makes sense.

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