Are you SMART about your website goals?

Are you SMART about your website goals?

One of the first questions a good website developer should ask any business owner is about goals for their website.  Successful website owners are SMART about their website goals.

Offline, you would never dream of building your company without setting out goals and objectives for it and the same should apply to the online version of your business.

Just as surely as businesses need to understand their customers’ intent, they need to understand the intent of their website.

Setting clearly defined and measurable goals and objectives for a website will be an essential part of a business’ success online.

Finding friction points

Once the objectives of the website are clearly defined, the performance can be measured and help find friction points between the website and its users.

Friction points are those areas of a website that slow down or stop a customer from moving from one stage to the next of the sales process.  Problems in either area can cost a sale or a client.

SMART online goals

SMART goals have been used for decades for offline businesses and they apply the same way to online business.

Goals need to be

Specific: The more you can define your goal in detail the more accurately you will be able to measure it.

  • Do you want visitors to book a service or an appointment?
  • Buy products?
  • Join your email list?
  • Follow your brand on social media?
  • Educate people about your company or brand?

Tip: To figure the answer out, ask yourself if you could get a visitor to do just one thing on your website, what would it be?

That can also be the first thing you begin to measure. How many people are taking the main action you want them to take.

Measurable: Every one of the goals should have a performance measurement built in.

It may be something like:

  • Get 10 new inquiries every week for the next six months
  • Increase my online revenue by 10% month on month in the next 6 months
  • Increase the sales of product X online by 20% in the next quarter
  • Add 100 new subscribers to my email list in the next 90 days.
  • Increase the Average Order value by 25% by the year end.

Achievable: They have to be realistic based on your available resources.

Relevant: All products or services have to be relevant to current trends and in line with the company’s overall goals.

Timely: Every goal should be achievable within a specified time frame e.g. 90 days or 1 year.

Helping marketing strategies

Understanding what your website should do for you can help you make more informed decisions about product design or marketing strategies for the future because you will be able to measure what offers have worked best from monitoring the data.

This can help streamline the types of services and products the business offers.

Time and money savings

Too often though, businesses either don’t think about what the goals and objectives are for a website and can run into trouble by wasting time, energy and money  on things they ‘thought’ might work. By setting measurable goals, they now have data they can base decisions on.

It also allows businesses to plan for the future instead of letting it up to chance.

Measurable data

A website can look fantastic and match the company’s branding and vision but that is useless if the intent of the website isn’t set against clear goals and objectives.

You can spend lots of time, energy and money and not end up where you want to be. Clear data, though. will show you where you are in relation to your website goals.

A good rule of thumb is to write down goals. It makes you far more accountable.

What are your online visitors’ goals?

Businesses also have to take their visitors’ goals into consideration when devising a company’s online goals. The company goals have to be compatible with the various goals of users.

These will determine the keywords you use and the functionality that will be required by different types of users.

People will go on to your website to:

  • Look up your contact details, opening hours
  • Find a product
  • Read about your products or services
  • Sign up for a service
  • Submit an application
  • Get technical help

There are many ways to go about setting out what you want people to do on your website and what action and outcome you want them to take but you need to have a plan and be able to measure what is happening to achieve success.