When you go into a new web design project, you know that your job is to make a website that looks great and gets your clients results.
That’s great and all, but getting results for your clients can be tough when they don’t know exactly what kinds of results they want. Today, we’ll go over why your clients don’t know their goals and how you can work with them to focus on the right things throughout their website.
It would be super helpful if each one of your clients knew exactly what their website needed to focus on to get their business moving forward. You might have a coaching client who knows she can make the sale when she gets a potential client on the phone so she wants her website to focus around booking consult calls. Or you might have a copywriting client who knows that if she can get people on her email list and in her funnel that she can turn a good number of those people into at least 1-time clients.
Unfortunately, a lot of clients don’t know those types of things, especially if you’re working with newer business owners. So even though you know that the website should focus on their goals, if your client doesn’t know what their actual goals are, things get a whole lot more difficult.
Luckily, there are some things you can do to help your clients in the process and not all of them are as tricky as you might think.
Ask the right questions
The most important thing you can do is ask the right questions while you’re onboarding your clients. We’ve talked about this in past videos, but your client questionnaire should focus just as much on the strategy of a website as it does on the design.
But even here, it’s not as straight-forward as we’d like. Asking a question like “What are the goals of your website” aren’t going to get you very far.
Instead you want to ask questions like:
- What makes most of your clients decide to book you? What step do they take right before they decide to hand over their hard-earned money?
- What is the top action you want someone to take while they’re on your website?
- What will your website need to accomplish to make the time and resources you’re putting into it feel worth it?
For most clients who have been in business long enough to learn the ropes, these questions are going to get you great answers.
Going along with our earlier example, you might have that coach point out that getting on consult calls is what makes her clients book or your copywriting client say that the number one thing she wants readers to do is join her email list so she can send them through a funnel.
But even with those answers, there may be times where you’ll still have to dig deeper.
For the coach we’ve been talking about, based on her client base, it might be clear that they’re not going to be ready to schedule a consult call the first few times they’re on her website. In that case, there needs to be goals one level deeper that get them ready for a consult call. And for this, you’ll find that things like reading blog posts, joining her email list, or attending live trainings are perfect for preparing them for that next step.
When deciding what these deeper steps are or even if you find that a client didn’t answer the questions in the intake form like you’d hoped, getting on a call with them is a great way to dig some more information out of them.
On a call, you can ask questions based on what you already know and ask follow-up questions in real time, while their mind is fresh and focused on the topic.
Be the expert
But sometimes you might still find, especially with newer clients, that they really don’t know what their goals should be.
A common mistake I’m sure we’ve all seen are newer business owners thinking they should send visitors to their services page at every chance they get and they don’t understand what steps go into getting a potential client ready for that step.
That’s when you have to be the expert and step up to help them out.
If you work with clients in a specific industry, you’ll likely already have a pattern in mind of journeys that tend to work well for that specific audience. Sure, it might be different for the specific client you’re working with, but if they don’t know their audience well enough yet, the knowledge you have is a whole lot better than nothing.
After your design is complete, you can always set up heatmaps on their website to track what’s working well and what needs to be adjusted to make the website convert as effectively as possible.
This is your zone of genius
It can be frustrating to have clients that don’t know what the goal of their website should be, but just remember, this is your zone of genius, not theirs. When you have the chance to step in and lead them through the process, you’re only making yourself and the work you do look even better.
To learn more about the steps you need to design a strategic and effective website, be sure to grab my checklist.