With so much competition for attention, how do you make sure your website rises above to make a great first impression? More than anything else, making strategic decisions for your brand by asking the right questions will ensure that decisions about design or messaging are made with your overall goals in mind. The result being not only the lasting impression you’re looking for, but cohesion between your company values and the website that represents them.

So what are these questions? Here’s a brief list to help get you started:

  1. What’s unique about your company? What are the unique benefits of your offering?
  2. How would you briefly describe what your company does in terms of what it’ll do for someone else?
  3. What’s your vision for your company’s future? Why will it continue to help people?
  4. Who is your biggest competition? What makes them successful (or unsuccessful as the case may be)?
  5. Who is your target audience? What are they looking for? Get as specific as you can here — you may need to break it up into different groups.
  6. What’s the most important decision your customers make when it comes to choosing your company?
  7. How do you think your company is perceived today, and what do you like and dislike about that?
  8. Why do you want to have a new website, or have your current website redesigned? What’s the goal?
  9. Why will people visit your company’s website?
  10. What do you want people to come away with after visiting your company’s website?30 Days of Lists - Day 2

By answering these questions you’ll have lots of information to help inform the decisions you’ll make regarding your website, whether you’re building it yourself or hiring someone to do it for you. As you think about the messaging you’ll include on the site and how it will be designed, referring back to your answers will help guide your plans to make sure you’re serving yourself well. If you’re faced with a difficult decision about how to move forward with your site, the answer that meets the most criteria for your success given your target audience and business goals is most often the right one.


Also consider that you want to promote what you’re good at. This sounds obvious, but when it comes planning for a new web platform consider whether you’re good at adding regular updates to your site (like with a blog) or whether you’d like to invest in it less frequently (like with a quarterly newsletter). If you already have a great Twitter following, but your Facebook page is a bit of a dud, don’t promote them both in the same way. If you already have 10k subscribers to your newsletter, but no one comments on your blog, make sure you encourage more newsletter signups and consider turning off (or seriously downplaying) your blog comments.

The more strategic thinking you do ahead of time, the more you’ll get out of your research, planning meetings, and ultimately your website.

Share This Article


If you’re interested in diving into more details about this topic (and many others!), check out my Author Website Planning Kit which details out everything you need to know to build your own author website.

This document consolidates, updates, and fleshes out my most popular and helpful articles written for authors and writers into a single, affordable resource. If you’ve been thinking about it for a while, but aren’t sure where to start, what platform to use, and what key decisions you’ll face, this planning kit is for you.

Interested in working with me on your author website? Contact me to schedule a chat.

 Author Website Planning Kit

Meet the Author

Author Website Designer, Kate Anchev

Author website designer, Kate Anchev, specializes in author websites for authors, publishers, and book promotion that are clean and goal-oriented to help authors tell their stories online. With many years of experience, Kate not only creates beautiful, easy-to-use, fresh designs, but also helps you make strategic decisions about your whole web presence, soup to nuts. If you’re interested in talking with Kate about your project, get in touch with her to schedule a chat.

Note that links to SiteGround author website hosting services throughout this website are affiliate links. I use and recommend these services not only because I receive a small commission if you purchase from them, but because I believe they are doing the best job possible.