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HPMD Bullets

BULLET #68
PLANNING A WEB SITE

The fastest growing segment of the Internet is clearly the World Wide Web. Corporate Web sites are appearing faster than dandelions on a spring lawn. Taking some time to plan your Web Site strategy can pay off in terms of dollars and time, as well as in managing client and management expectations. A good web site should appear a well organized as a golf course, with a look and feel of a flawless green. Here are some guidelines for things to investigate.


Web Site Planning

A. Clarify the Site Goals, Objectives and Functionality. There are many types; each can build on the other. Five examples are: B. Develop a Site Map. Draw a picture of the information tree and action flow you want to support. Talk about the connections and basic navigation of the site.

C. Decide the Site Look & Feel. Develop a graphical theme to carry through the site. This includes things like the corporate logo to the artwork for products and services. This requires the involvement of Marketing, just like for a major magazine advertisement. You need to answer who will design your site layout and images? Who will create the images? A graphics artist is the preferred answer. D. Think Development, Maintenance and Support. This is another resource issue, deciding where to draw the line between those features to be handled internally, and those to be outsourced. A good exercise is to ask what internal resources can you devote full-time for at least the duration of site construction. Then be clear about the recurring functions and their owners.
E. Selecting an ISP. Unless you plan to host the site on your own computers, you need to think about what you will need from an Internet Service Provider (ISP). (If you are hosting the site internally, you will need to provide these things yourself.) Some things to look for in a web site provider are:
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