If you're one of the 72 percent marketers who's looking forward to creating "more engaging content" next year, we're here to fully back you up! But what about your website that will house your valuable content?
When was the last time it underwent a revamp?
Before your prospects and customers can say their 'oohs' and 'aahs' as they stare lovingly at your content, they've gone somewhere else because of painfully long loading times or far too many navigation links. You are now left wondering why no one has noticed the new video or eBook you thought was going to draw in more leads. Unfortunately, you can't request for a website redesign because the last one was just a couple of months ago.
How Does Growth Driven Design Work?
Napoleon Bonaparte's genius military tactics were next to nothing without his fleet of equally brilliant marshals who led his army to victory. The same goes for your solid content creation plans. You need a seamless, responsive website design that will highlight (not overshadow) your impactful, unique content.
And this is where growth driven design (GDD) can marshal you on!
Test It As You Build It
Growth driven design is founded on the principles of scientific method. You hypothesize on how you can accomplish a goal (say you want to reduce bounce rates), test it based on existing data and implement or discard changes based on the results.
Like this art installation that changes shape every time someone steps on its curved base, GDD bends into the needs of your audiences. The benefit is two-fold: you obtain a highly-intuitive grasp of your users' web habits, and you get to refine your site for a straightforward, enjoyable user experience based on hard data. This is accomplished by consistently gathering data on your user group and building your site from analytics audit.
How Growth Driven Design Works
As GDD takes on the fundamental tenets of the 'lean' school of thought: constant reflection and adaptation, it has two stages. First, you create the launchpad website. Second, you go through the growth driven cycle itself (comprised of learning loops wherein you experiment, learn, and improve).
Stage One: Strategy, Launchpad Website, Learning
You'll kick off with a robust strategy anchored on analytics. Here at Lean Labs, this initial phase can be further broken down into the following:
Goal formation - What specific objectives do you want to accomplish? What would you like to improve?
Review and analysis of existing data (quantitative research) - This could take in the form of content inventory, website audits, etc.
Breaking up your audience into different persona types (qualitative research) - Be imaginative! Think about your perceived audience's pain points. What are they possibly looking for when visiting your site? How about their job titles or particular niches?
Creating fundamental assumptions about your users - What is the single most valuable thing that your brand offers? What are your users' main interests? How will they access your website? Why are they seeking your brand in the first place?
The Launch Pad Website
With a traditional website redesign, you're stuck in the strategy and wish list phases. Once the new website is up, designers and devs get to declare that it's done. With GDD, a launch pad website is just the beginning.
Your launchpad website is a result of carefully curating your wish list and deciding which action actions should be considered a priority. At this point, you ruthlessly filter the nice-to-haves from the must-haves. For each item in the list, ask yourself: Is this necessary for the core launch? Or can this be done later on?
Learning: The Hypothesis Statements
Remember back in grade school when you have to formulate a hypothesis on a lab experiment? You'd be doing the same thing at this phase. This time around, it's from the action items you deemed as must-haves.
Hubspot recommends that each hypothesis should have these four essential elements:
Definition of Complete
Here's an example with the aforementioned components:
For our (target persona) to visit the services page, we believe that adding reviews in the homepage will boost inquiry rates by 20 percent.
We believed this to be true because of (previous data and analysis).
Ultimately, the phase of your launchpad website should revolve around your goals, assumptions, and hypothesis. Your site, at this point, may look unfinished. In reality, it's a blank canvas where everything your need to know about your users will trickle in over time.
Stage Two: Growth Driven Design Loop
After launching your new website, you will go through loops of learning, developing, measuring, and launching changes to the website. And that cycle never ends, as your website gets better, converts more leads, and enhances the buying cycle based on the scientific method.
The stage is comprised of the following steps:
Determine if your launch pad site met your goals. After brainstorming again with your team and collating data on user behavior, you identify action items in the nice-to-have list that you can add to the next monthly sprint cycle. You go over each item on the list based on their order of priority.
These action items typically fall into these four categories:
Improving user experience
Creating marketing assets
Integrate new deliverables, based on the action items you considered as priorities e.g. content marketing campaigns, setting up email marketing lists
3. Measure and Learn
This is when you go over the data you've gathered during the development phase. Was your hypothesis validated or disproved? What did you glean from implementing the action items you've developed? This should be done with the rest of your team, and ask each member what they've learned.
Publish your conclusions and implement recommendations based on your findings.
Rinse and repeat! Hypothesize, develop, learn, and implement for each cycle. The number of GDD cycles required depends on your current marketing goals, and how far you're willing to grow as a brand.
By and large, the GDD approach gives you full control of the website redesign.
Growth-Hack Your Way to Marketing Success
Growth driven design is without a doubt the way forward. You have now the option to create a website design based on hard data than rely on invalidated assumptions. We'd be delighted to guide your brand in its growth driven design journey!
Ryan's experience ranges from higher education to SMBs and tech startups. When not doing digital marketing, he's sure to be enjoying some kind of nerdy pastime.