For years, most organizations have assigned management of their website to their IT department. But with the continuous evolution of technology along with the fact that we spend more and more time online, your website is now one of the biggest windows into your organization. Should you really leave the entire management to your IT department? Here are some reasons why a website project is a lot more than just an IT project.
Opportunity is knocking, don’t let your website slam the door.
Your new website is a big opportunity to improve, be more efficient, reach out to new customers, the list goes on and on. However, identifying opportunities and requirements is a collaborative effort, so you need to have all aspects of your business represented accordingly.
A site is useless without a good user experience
Gone are the days of static websites without an emphasis on user experience. Your website has to be interactive, personal and intuitive; it has to focus on the user experience. You can’t design and implement a website with a great user experience if most of your project stakeholders are only your technical team — they usually aren’t the ones who have been for studying and understanding your customers, so marketing, business, customer service and other departments should be involved.
Design is more than meets the eye
Design trends come and go, but the importance of design has increased. Design is no longer built around technology; the technology is built around the design. In other words, design and the user experience have center stage and technology now plays the supporting role. That being said, your IT department should focus on technology, but not on the design. You need stakeholders that understand the importance of design and the latest trends to make decisions about the look and feel.
A happy customer is a loyal customer
Your website has to communicate the value of your product or service, but it also needs to connect with customers and keep the relationship active. We are surrounded by great customer service, and your website plays a large part in how customers perceive your customer service. Again, this is not an area that you should expect your IT department to know well and be able to translate into requirements.
In a world of tweets, shares, likes and more…
Customers have now come to expect your brand to have some sort of social media presence and they will also expect to be able to interact with your brand via social media. This means your website should be social-friendly with easily shareable images, links and content. This also helps your SEO by building links to your website through social channels. This is something your marketing or social media team will want input and control over when it comes to building out your website.
Measuring your site’s ROI
What’s the point of having a website if you’re not tracking your analytics? However, it’s important to note that setting up analytics is very different to interpreting results. How you interpret results and how you react to them often requires a good understanding of marketing, so while the initial setup can be considered technical, interpreting results and then acting upon them is more suited for marketing.
In the end, IT departments do have an important role to play in ensuring the technology behind the website facilitates your current and future needs, but a good technology platform is only a part of what makes a website great. Great websites have a track record of involving all areas of business, typically by having a cross-functional team working toward the same goal.