Podcast Episode 48 – Creating a Blueprint for Success with a Website Planner

Are you ready to create a website that truly represents your business and attracts your target audience? It all starts with strategic planning. In this episode, your host, Chrissy Rey, walks you through the essential steps of crafting a website plan that sets you up for online success. To help you plan your website, Chrissy created a comprehensive Website Planner packed with worksheets and templates for each step of the planning process.

Whether you’re building a new website from scratch or looking to revamp your existing site, this episode will give you the tools and guidance you need to lay the foundation for a successful online presence. Don’t miss this essential guide to strategic website planning. Tune in now and start turning your website vision into a reality!

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Show Notes

Welcome to the Website Success podcast, where we dive deep into the essentials of creating and managing a successful website. I’m your host, Christy Rey, and in this episode, we focus on the crucial first phase of the website creation process: Planning. Whether you’re starting a new project or revamping an existing site, laying a solid foundation with a comprehensive plan is key to aligning your website with your business goals and target audience.

Timestamps & Key Points

  • [00:00:09] – Introduction to the importance of website planning.
  • [00:00:53] – Recommendation to use the Website Planner.
  • [00:01:24] – Identifying your offer.
  • [00:02:16] – Setting SMART goals for your website.
  • [00:03:03] – Understanding and defining your target audience.
  • [00:04:00] – Competitive analysis and creating a Unique Value Proposition (UVP).
  • [00:04:42] – Brainstorming website content and functionality.
  • [00:05:25] – Choosing the right website builder and outlining your tech stack.
  • [00:06:08] – Budgeting for website costs and ongoing expenses.
  • [00:06:23] – Creating a timeline for your website project.
  • [00:07:09] – Join the conversation in the Website Success Lounge on Facebook.

Key Takeaways

  • Planning is the foundational step in creating a website that effectively represents your business and engages your target audience.
  • Clearly defining your offer, setting measurable goals, and understanding your target audience are essential early steps in the planning process.
  • A competitive analysis and a strong UVP help differentiate your website from others in your niche.
  • Documenting your plan, whether through the recommended Website Planner or another method, is crucial for keeping your project on track.

Resources Mentioned


[00:00:09] Welcome to website success. I’m your host, Christy Rey, and today I’m going to go a little bit more in depth on something that I talked about in our previous episode about how to make a website. And that is going to be the first phase of the process of creating a website, which is planning your website. If you want to create a website that truly represents your business, attracts your target audience and has all of the features that you need to turn that target audience into clients, you need to start with a plan. And in this episode, I’ll walk you through the essential steps of creating, just such a plan.

[00:00:53] I very highly recommend grabbing my website planner from websitesuccessacademy.com to document your plan. The website planner includes worksheets for each of the steps that I’m going to cover in this episode. You can find it in the resources section of the website.

[00:01:09] Now, if you’d rather do your own thing, you can still document using a Google document or word document or something like that, but just make sure that you take notes for all of the things that I’m going to talk about in this episode.

[00:01:22] All right. Let’s get started.

[00:01:24] The first step of the planning phase is to identify your offer. What are you selling or promoting on your website? Whether it’s a product service or information. It’s important to clearly define your offer from the get-go. And this is true, even if you’re a nonprofit that’s asking for donations instead of giving information. You need to let your target audience know what they’ll get if they work with you. So you need to be very clear on what exactly that is.

[00:01:53] After you identify your offer, it can really help to break it down into features and benefits. Features are the characteristics of your offer, while, benefits, explain how those features help your customers. Understanding that distinction is going to help you create compelling content when it comes time to do that, which is going to be in the next phase of the website creation process.

[00:02:16] Next you should set some goals for your website. What do you want to achieve with it? Whether it’s generating leads, making sales or building brand awareness, it’s really important to have clear and measurable goals. I recommend using the SMART framework. And SMART stands for specific measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.

[00:02:36] Now you need to think about your target audience. Who are you trying to reach with your website? The target audience is going to guide the branding design and content of your website. So knowing it is really important for creating a website, that’s going to resonate with them. And you want to try to think in terms of a specific target audience and not a very broad target audience. So keep that in mind when you’re planning your target audience.

[00:03:03] After you figure out who your target audience is, you can take that understanding to the next level by creating an ideal customer or client avatar or an ICA. And this is a detailed profile of your ideal customer or client. It’s going to include things like their demographics, their goals, their challenges, their pain points, and other information like that. Having a clear ICA is going to guide you with decisions about the design and content just as the target audience.will, but it’s going to go a little bit more in depth into that.

[00:03:35] Now let’s shift gears a little bit and talk about your competitors. Understanding your competitive landscape is absolutely critical for creating a website that stands out what makes you different from your competitors. In order to figure that out, you need to identify your competitors and analyze their strengths and their weaknesses and what they offer. And that’s going to help you differentiate your website and your offer from the rest.

[00:04:00] Now building on your competitor analysis. You should also create a unique value proposition or UVP. The UVP is a clear statement that communicates the unique value that you offer to your customers. Again, what makes you stand out from the rest? A strong UVP is going to set you apart from that competition. And it’s also gonna help your website visitors understand why they should choose you instead of the rest.

[00:04:26] With your offer, target audience and UVP in mind, it’s time to brainstorm your website content. What pages and information will your website include? Think about your customer’s journey and what content they’ll need at each stage of that journey.

[00:04:42] The next step is going to be to consider your website’s functionality. What features and capabilities where your website need to deliver your content and achieve all of your goals. Do you need e-commerce opt-in forms, sales pages, courses, or something else?

[00:04:58] Now at this point, you should have a pretty clear vision for your website and its functional requirements. So now it’s time to choose your website builder. There are a lot of options available and each one has its own strengths and weaknesses. You are going to need to do some research and select a tool that fits your needs and your budget. And if you have no idea where to begin, take a look at WordPress. That’s my personal favorite Squarespace and other tools like that.

[00:05:25] Now in addition to your website builder, you’re probably going to need other technologies to power your website. And those are going to include things like your payment processors, your email marketing platform, analytics tools, and stuff like that. And if you take all those tools together, you’re going to turn them into what’s called a tech stack. You definitely want to document what your planned tech stack is when you’re planning your website.

[00:05:48] Once you’ve got your website, builder and tech stack in mind, you also should create a budget for your website. Consider both the upfront costs like domain name, registration, website design, if you need to hire a web developer or anything like that, as well as any ongoing expenses like hosting and maintenance.

[00:06:08] And then the last step is going to be to create a timeline for your website project. Try to break the project down into key phases, like planning, design, content creation, and launch. And if you can, set target dates for each phase to keep yourself on track.

[00:06:23] Now, I know that was a lot, but really after you document all of that, you should have a clear blueprint for creating a website that’s going to represent your business and attract your target audience. You’re not going to have the website just yet. You need to still create the content. You need to create the brand for it and everything. But you now have the information that you need to move on to those next two phases. And the content creation is what I’m going to talk about in the next episode. So make sure you come back for that one.

[00:06:52] Taking the time to plan your website upfront is going to save you time and headaches down the road. So again, make sure you download the website planner or otherwise document this plan in some way and work through all the steps. Start building your plan today.

[00:07:09] If you have any questions or you want to share your website, planning progress, head over to the Website Success Lounge on Facebook. I’d love to hear from you and support you on your website journey.

[00:07:20] That’s all for today’s episode. If you found this episode helpful, please subscribe to the podcast and leave us a review and be sure to tune in next week with the discussion of creating content for your website, based on your target audience and all of the other information that you collected during the planning phase until then happy planning.​