If your website is outdated, poorly designed, or hard to use, you’re missing out on the opportunity to connect with those customers and tell your story.
In today’s digital age, your website is the hub of your business. It’s where potential customers go to learn about what you do, how you do it, and why you do it.
At Pronto Marketing, we believe that every business has a unique story to tell, and your own website should be the platform for telling that story. That’s why we’ve created this step-by-step guide to help you build a solid business case for a new company website.
In the following article, you’ll learn how to identify the problems with your current business website, determine the goals and objectives for a new one, conduct a cost-benefit analysis, and present a compelling case to the decision-makers in your company.
It’s time to take control of your online presence and create a small business website that truly reflects who you are and what you do. Let’s get started!
The Benefits of Investing in a New Company Website
As someone who has long been an advocate for the power of a strong online presence, I can confidently say that investing in a new business website is one of the best decisions a company can make.
A new website can provide numerous benefits, including:
A . Improved Brand Image
As a business owner, you understand the importance of having a strong brand image. And when it comes to your business website, that brand image is on full display. An improved brand image can bring numerous benefits to your business, including:
- Increased customer loyalty: When customers have a positive perception of a brand, they are more likely to be loyal and continue doing business with the company.
- Attracting new customers: A strong brand image can help to attract new customers by showcasing the values and identity of the company.
- Increased credibility: It can also help to increase credibility and trust in the eyes of a target audience. This can be especially important for businesses in competitive industries.
- Improved customer experience: An improved brand image can lead to a better overall customer experience, as customers are more likely to have positive interactions with a company they perceive as trustworthy and professional.
- Enhance customer perception: Brand image can enhance the way customers perceive a company and its products or services. This can be vital for businesses that rely on word-of-mouth marketing or customer referrals.
B . Increased Traffic and Leads
More website traffic means more users visit your site and learn about your products or services. This can lead to increased sales and revenue for your business.
To take an example, Patel Plastic Surgery, a healthcare provider in Atlanta, GA, asked Pronto to build a new website for them from scratch. We built a site for them that has constantly drawn admiring comments from prospective patients, all while highlighting the professionalism and expertise of Dr. Patel and his staff.
In addition, improving your search engine ranking makes it more likely for potential customers to find your site when searching for relevant keywords.
Read more about Dr. Patel’s website build project in this case study and what they said about it in their Clutch review here!
C . Enhanced Functionality and Integration with Other Systems
Your new business website can be designed to integrate with your customer relationship management (CRM) system, allowing for seamless communication and data sharing between your website and sales team. This can lead to improved efficiency of your sales and marketing efforts.
For example, you can connect Gravityforms to your CRM in WordPress with ease:
So if a potential customer fills out a form on your website, that information can be automatically added to your CRM system and routed to the appropriate salesperson helping your company save time and eliminate the need for manual data entry.
Furthermore, a new website can be built with advanced functionality such as personalized content, chatbots, and e-commerce capabilities, all of which can help to improve the user experience and increase conversions.
D . Increased Trust and Credibility with Potential Customers
There are several key elements that a new business site should have in order to increase trust and credibility with potential customers.
First and foremost, it’s important for the website to be well-designed and user-friendly. A cluttered or confusing website can be off-putting to visitors and damage the trust they have in your company.
Take a look at this agricultural non-profit’s old homepage, for example:
Their homepage was cluttered up and poorly laid out, leading to a negative user experience.
Their new website completely changed this, giving them a far better first impression on arrival:
You can read more about how we helped MOFGA here.
To boost trust and credibility, a company website should be easy to navigate and provide relevant and accurate information. This includes clear and concise descriptions of products or services, as well as contact information and transparent policies.
In addition to these basic elements, a new business website should also include social proof such as customer reviews and testimonials. Seeing that other customers have had positive experiences with your company can help to build trust and credibility with potential customers.
Similarly, including information about your company’s history, mission, and values can help to establish your company as a reputable and trustworthy business.
The Purpose of this Guide
Before you can start building that new website, you need to identify the problems or challenges with your current one and determine the goals and objectives for it.
That’s where this guide comes in.
We’ll outline the key steps for working out where your current website falls short, determining the goals and objectives for the new one, conducting a cost-benefit analysis, developing a project plan, and presenting the business case to decision-makers.
By following this guide, you’ll be able to build a solid case for a new business website that will help your firm succeed.
Identify the Problems or Challenges with the Current Website
Identifying the challenges with your company website is an important first step in building a business case for a new one. There are several ways to do this:
Conduct a website audit: A website audit involves analyzing various aspects of your website, including its design, functionality, content, and performance. This can help to identify areas that need improvements, such as site speed, poor navigation, outdated content, lack of responsiveness on mobile devices, poor user experience, or lack of integration with other systems.
Additionally, you should also consider the user experience when conducting a website audit. Is the website easy to use and understand? How long do they spend on the homepage or service pages? Are there clear calls to action and forms that allow users to connect easily with your business online? If not, this can be a problem for potential customers and should be addressed in the new business website.
Finally, you should consider the website’s integration with other systems. You want to make sure you aren’t wasting time because your website forms aren’t giving you lead information.
Does the website integrate seamlessly with your CRM or other business systems? Integration with other systems is an important aspect to consider when conducting a website audit.
If the website does not integrate seamlessly with your customer relationship management (CRM), for example, your customer information from your website won’t be automatically added to your CRM, which can lead to manual data entry and slower communication with future clients.
Gather customer feedback: Gathering customer feedback is an important step in identifying the problems or challenges with your company website. By asking existing customers for their opinions on their experience with your website, you can gain valuable insights into any pain points or challenges they have encountered. This information can be used to build a persuasive business case for a new website that addresses these issues and improves the overall user experience.
There are several ways to gather customer feedback on your website, including surveys and customer interviews. Surveys can be an effective way to gather feedback from a large number of customers in a short amount of time. Focus groups allow you to gather in-depth feedback from a smaller group of customers in a more interactive setting. Customer interviews can provide even more detailed feedback, but may be more time-consuming to conduct, so you should prioritize reviews and testimonials from your most satisfied customers.
Analyze website data: Using tools such as Google Analytics can help to identify problems or challenges with your website by analyzing metrics such as website traffic, bounce rates, and conversion rates.
Website traffic is an important metric to analyze when conducting a business website audit. If your website has low traffic, this could be a sign of a lack of visibility in search engines or poor marketing efforts. On the other hand, high traffic does not necessarily mean that your website is performing well. It’s important to also consider metrics such as bounce rates and conversion rates to get a complete picture of your website’s performance.
Bounce rates refer to the percentage of visitors who leave your website after viewing only one page. High bounce rates can be a sign of problems such as poor user experience, confusing navigation, or irrelevant content.
Conversion rates, on the other hand, refer to the percentage of visitors who take your desired action on your website, such as making a purchase or filling out a form. Low conversion rates can be a sign of a lack of calls-to-action, a confusing checkout process, or poor website design.
Consult with stakeholders: Talking with stakeholders such as sales, marketing, and customer service team members can help to identify any challenges or problems they have encountered with the website.
Determine the Goals and Objectives for the New Website
If you’re thinking about building a new business website, the first thing you need to do is determine the goals and objectives. This is crucial if you want to make sure the new website meets the needs of your business and your ideal customers and is aligned with your overall business plan.
To do this, you need to identify the problems or challenges with your current website. You can do this through a website audit, customer feedback, analysis of website data, and consultation with stakeholders, as we covered in the previous section.
Once you’ve identified these issues, you can use them to develop a clear set of goals and objectives for the new website.
For example, your aims might include improving the website’s design and user experience, increasing traffic and lead generation, improving the website’s performance and mobile responsiveness, or enhancing the website’s integration with other systems.
By setting clear goals and objectives, you can ensure that the new website is built to drive your business forward and help you reach your targets.
Conduct a Cost-Benefit Analysis
Conducting a cost-benefit analysis is an important step in building a business case for a new website.
For most small business owners, time and money are two resources that you usually don’t have enough of, so you don’t want to waste either of them.
For more expensive or time-consuming projects, such as building a website or renovating a store, cost-benefit analysis will help you to determine if a business project is worth the outlay before you commit to spending any money, and so it is absolutely vital to do this before you push ahead and potentially put a dent in your balance sheet.
To conduct a cost-benefit analysis for your new business website, you should start by identifying all of the costs associated with the project.
The most important ones to consider are:
Design and development costs: These are the fees charged by designers and developers for creating the look and functionality of the website. This may include costs for creating wireframes, prototypes, and design mock-ups, as well as coding and testing the website.
Hosting costs: These costs include charges by a hosting company to store and maintain the website on a server. This may include costs for web hosting on a shared, dedicated, or cloud server, as well as costs for bandwidth, storage, and security.
Domain name registration costs: These are the costs by a domain registrar to register and maintain the website’s domain name. This may include fees for registering a new domain name, as well as costs for renewing the domain name annually.
Content creation costs: These costs include the fees charged by writers, editors, and other content creators for creating and maintaining the website’s content. This may include costs for creating new content, as well as costs for updating and maintaining existing web content.
Marketing costs: This may include costs for search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, social media marketing, or content marketing.
While this outlay isn’t directly related to the cost of building your website, your spending won’t stop once the project is finished. There are fees charged by marketing agencies or consultants for promoting your website and driving traffic to it, and many of these will be incurred after your website is built.
Ongoing maintenance costs: These costs include the fees charged by designers, developers, or hosting providers for maintaining and updating your website on an ongoing basis. This may include costs for software updates, security patches, backups, and performance monitoring.
Indirect costs: In addition to these direct costs, there may be other indirect costs associated with building a new website. These may include opportunity costs, such as the cost of using employees’ time on the website project instead of other projects, as well as costs for training employees on how to use the new website.
Next, you should identify all of the potential benefits of the new website and compare them to the costs.
You also need to establish reasonable expectations. Will you regard the project as a success if traffic increases 5% or 50% over a six month or a two year period? If the calculated benefits don’t meet your expectations or are outweighed by costs, then you need to rethink your business plan.
The most important benefits (some of which we covered above) are:
Increased traffic and leads: Implementing strategies such as improving the website’s SEO, creating engaging and relevant content, and optimizing the website’s design and layout for conversions will help to drive traffic and increase conversions.
Improved brand image and customer experience: Redesigning the website to be more visually appealing and user-friendly, creating a consistent brand identity across the website, and ensuring that the website is easy to navigate and use.
A positive user experience on your website significantly boosts your chances of converting.
Improved search engine ranking:Search engine optimization best practices, such as optimizing the website’s content and meta tags, creating high-quality backlinks, and improving the website’s loading times and mobile responsiveness are all ways of increasing your search engine ranking.
More than 90% of people stay on the first page of search results, so if you aren’t ranking highly, you won’t get many clicks or conversions.
Increased efficiency and productivity: A new website can help to increase efficiency and productivity by streamlining processes such as lead generation, customer communication, CRM optimization, and order processing, saving you time and money.
Costs vs. Benefits
Finally, you should compare the costs and benefits of the new website to determine whether the investment is worthwhile. This can be done by calculating the return on investment (ROI) or by using a cost-benefit ratio.
For example, let’s say that the costs of building a new website are $5,000, and the estimated return from the new website is $10,000 over the next three years.
To calculate the ROI, you would divide the benefits by the costs:
$10,000 / $5,000 = 2.
This means that the ROI of the new website is 2, or 200%. In other words, it indicates that the investment in the new website is expected to generate a 200% return over the next three years.
Alternatively, you could use a cost-benefit ratio to compare the costs and benefits of the new business website. To do this, you would divide the benefits by the costs and express the result as a ratio.
To calculate the Cost-Benefit ratio, divide the return from the initial investment by the cost of the investment:
($10,000 – $5,000)/$5,000 = 1.
This means that the Cost-Benefit Ratio of the new website is 100%.
By conducting a cost-benefit analysis, you can make an informed decision about whether to invest in a new website and how to allocate your resources to maximize the potential benefits.
You can use our free website cost calculator to help you assess the outlay required for your new site.
Develop a Project Plan
A project plan helps to communicate the project’s objectives and progress to stakeholders, such as decision-makers, team members, and agencies or freelancers.
A project plan should include a clear timeline with key milestones (such as start and launch dates), budget, and scope of work. Once you have key milestones in place, you can work with vendors to add other targets like design development and testing.
It should also identify the resources needed to complete the project, including the team members, contractors, and third-party vendors involved. The project plan should also outline the roles and responsibilities of each team member and any dependencies or risks that may impact the project.
Developing a detailed and well-organized project plan is crucial to the success of the new website project. It helps to ensure that the project stays on track, stays within budget, and delivers the desired results.
Here’s an example of how Pronto lays out a timeline with key milestones in website build proposals:
Example of a Project Plan for Your New Company Website
- The purpose of this project is to build a new company website that meets the goals and objectives identified in the business case.
- The project will be completed over a period of [x] months, from [Month, Day] to [Month, Day].
- The budget for the project is $xx,xxx, which includes all web design, development, and testing costs, as well as hosting and maintenance costs.
- [Month, Day] to [Month, Day]: Website development and design
- [Month, Day] to [Month, Day]: Website testing and refinement
- [Month, Day]: Website launch and ongoing maintenance
Scope of work:
- The new website will be built on a content management system (CMS) such as WordPress.
- The website will have a modern and responsive design with a focus on usability and accessibility.
- The website will include 10 pages of content, including an About Us page, product or service pages, and a Contact page.
- The website will be optimized for Google and will include basic SEO features such as meta tags and sitemaps.
- The website will be integrated with the company’s CRM system and will include a form for collecting leads.
- Website design and development: The project will be managed by the company’s marketing manager, with support from a website design and development firm.
- Website testing and refinement: The project will be tested and refined by agencies/freelancers and internal team members for quality assurance (QA).
- Website launch and ongoing maintenance: The website will be launched and maintained by the same website design and development firm.
Roles and responsibilities:
- Marketing manager: Responsible for managing the project, communicating with stakeholders, and coordinating with the website design and development firm.
- Website design and development firm: Responsible for designing and developing the website, as well as for launching and providing ongoing support and maintenance.
- QA testers and usability experts: Responsible for testing and refining the website, ensuring that it meets the project’s goals and objectives.
Reporting and communication:
- Regular progress reports will be provided to stakeholders, including the project team, decision-makers, and vendors.
- The project team will meet weekly to review progress and address any issues or challenges.
- Any changes to the project scope, timeline, or budget will be communicated to stakeholders in a timely manner.
Present the Business Case to Decision-Makers
Once you have completed the project plan for your new company website, the next step is to present the business case to decision-makers.
A business case is a document that presents the arguments and evidence for why a project or initiative should be undertaken.
In this case, the business case for a new company website should:
- outline the problems or challenges with the current website,
- the goals and objectives for the new website, and
- the costs and benefits of building the new website.
To present the business case to decision-makers, you will need to clearly and concisely communicate the key points and evidence supporting the investment in a new website.
This may involve using data and metrics to demonstrate the potential return on investment, such as increased traffic and lead generation, improved brand image and customer experience, enhanced functionality and integration with other systems, and improved search engine ranking.
You may also want to include customer feedback, competitive analysis, and industry research to support your case.
It is important to be prepared to answer any questions or concerns that decision-makers may have about the project, such as the costs and risks involved, the timeline and resources required, and the potential impact on the business.
By presenting a well-researched and compelling business case, you can increase the chances of gaining approval and support for your new company website.
In a nutshell, building a new company website can provide a ton of value to your business. This includes more traffic, better lead generation, an improved brand image, and enhanced functionality and integration with other systems. All of these perks can lead to a positive return on investment and give your company a competitive edge in the long run.
By identifying the problems with your current website, setting clear goals and objectives for the new one, analyzing the costs and benefits, and creating a solid project plan, you can create a business case for a new website. Your project plan should outline the timeline, budget, and resources needed, as well as any risks or dependencies.
We highly recommend that decision-makers seriously consider this project and the long-term benefits it can bring to the company. A new company website can drive growth, streamline processes, and increase customer satisfaction, all of which can contribute to your company’s success. Investing in a new website is a smart and strategic move that will pay off in the long run.
If your firm is looking to build a new website, don’t hesitate to reach out. Our team of experienced web designers can build the site you’re hoping for, and offer ongoing website support to keep your site running after launching it! Get in touch today and schedule a consultation!