If you’re planning to create a website for your company or organization, you probably have lots of ideas in mind of how you want it to look and what functions you want it to have. Failing to consider your target website audience, however, could land you on the wrong track.
Who is my Target Website Audience?
Well, the answer to that depends largely on the nature of your business or organization. Who is it that you want to come to your site? Who buys your product? To whom are you aiming as your main demographic? If you haven’t considered this target website audience in the design of your site, you may not be attracting who you want. There are a few questions to consider when identifying your target website audience:
- What problems does your target visitor have that relate to your product or information?
- What demographic best describes this person? (Age, gender, business type, etc.)
- What information does this visitor seek?
- How can you help him or her find that information easily?
- How do you show this ideal visitor that you are the best source for the product or information?
Designing For Your Target Website Audience
Since you know that your site serves as your most valuable employee, you want to “hire” a site that will relate to your audience. For example, I’m recently created a site for a hearing aid center. While not all of the people who are seeking this service are senior citizens, logic states that the target website audience will largely be older adults. Because of that, the design of the site should be simple, have larger fonts, and use colors that are easy to see. Since a large percentage of the site’s visitors may not be as comfortable with technology and the web, the target website audience would dictate that the site not be too flashy and be easy to navigate.
By contrast, if you’re considering a site for a rock band, your target website audience would probably be vastly different. The colors should reflect the style of music, and you’d be more likely to add flashy elements like audio or video to your site. The images on the site would also indicate a younger audience and portray the mood you’re trying to convey.
Stop and Think
I was chatting with a friend and colleague, Buddy Loughlin from ByHisDesigns, and he had some great thoughts I’d like to share about working with clients toward reaching their target website audiences:
“I think a lot of times a client has a vision of what they perceive as beauty and functional to them, but without thinking whether the website is for them or to reach others. Have they really thought who their clients are or who they want them to be and designing a site that will assist that? …It makes a client stop, even for a moment, and determine who their clients are, and who they want them to be and build according to that. It can totally transform their idea of what they want.”
Sometimes considering that audience can completely change the direction of the website project, usually for the better. What you have in mind when you get started may not be what your target website audience needs or wants. So, consider who you’re trying to reach, and keep swimming along!