Essential Website Project Starter Questions

Let’s say someone asks you to build them a website (or you want to build one yourself).

Here are some questions that can help you figure out what they (or you) really want and need.

(I like to say: “A website can range in complexity from one line of code all the way up to Amazon or Facebook. Let’s figure out what we’re really talking about here.”)

The Questions

  1. What are your goals for your website? (e.g. how does it help YOU?)
  2. What can people DO when they visit the website? Please provide links to similar examples online if you have them.
  3. What content and graphic resources do you have available right now, and can you realistically produce yourself? (logo, color palette, photos, text, video, audio, etcetera)
  4. Who will update the website, what will they update, and how often?
  5. What financial resources do you have available for the project, for initial setup and ongoing fees and maintenance? (I need to know what level of solutions I can propose)
  6. Are there any scheduling issues to plan around? (“must launch by…”, “I’m unavailable for collaboration during…”, etcetera)
  7. What other needs or wants do you have for this project? (please indicate "needs" vs. "wants”… this can be tricky)

This seems to help people get into the right mindset, past the hopelessly vague “I need a website!”

It also provides a bridge to talk about money that is much better than the reasonable but usually misconstrued request of “what’s your budget?”

There’s more to talk about with the money question, but I’ll leave that to a future message.


Earlier Post: Two important questions about “Good news, bad news, who knows?”

Later Post: Making New Year Resolutions Stick

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