Part II: Planning for Success

Defining your Mission, Goals and Audiences

by Pauline Sugarman

This article explores the importance of defining your mission, goals and your targeted demographic, their needs and the benefits they seek.

To create a successful website, it is imperative that every visitor understand clearly what you are about from the moment they click on your website.

Defining Your Mission

We refer to this clarity of mission as your Reason for Being. Many people may already have a good idea of what they are about from working on their Mission Statement for their company. If you already have a Mission Statement, this is a good time to review it. If you are just starting out, this is a perfect time to sit down and define your purpose.

For what purpose does your company exist in the world? And example of a statement might be:

To create the finest quality modern designed jewelry in world, enhancing the enjoyment and success of wholesale jewelry companies that will sell our jewelry and the lives of satisfied clients that will purchase it.

Once you are clear on your business’ mission ask yourself the following question:

Next, ask yourself:

Audience(s) and Their Technology

Defining your User Groups

Once you have defined your Reason for Being and the the role your website will play within your overall marketing efforts, it’s time to consider who your audience will be.

Ask yourself:

It is imperative to know who will be interested in your site so that it can be created to best entice them to visit and become a loyal customer.    You may very likely have more than one targeted group and each will have different needs and seeks different benefits.  Unless you are planning on creating a separate web site to satisfy each targeted audience, it is recommended, after you have completed the above exercise for each group, that you review the separate lists to see what benefits they have in common. Make a list of these benefits and emphasize them throughout your website design. If the needs are quite different between groups, you may want to design sub-sections of your website that speak more directly to each group's needs.  An example would be a fitness website where children, men and women each have separate sections that address their specific needs.


Technology, the quality of the computers being used by your primary audience and the quality of the bandwidth that they have available to them are very important issues to consider when creating a web site. Ignoring these factors led to the demise of more than a few large web site ventures during the late 1990s. Ask yourself:

Today, the U.S. is moving fairly quickly toward the use of broadband with over 50% now using this faster connection. Urban areas account for most of the broadband connections.  Many rural areas are having a harder time getting the infrastructure in place.  We also find that broadband usage is higher among younger demographics as well as by those with higher income and education levels. 

Defining Your Web Site Goals

Once you have clarified your Reason for Being, your primary Audience(s) and their technology, it’s time to decide on what specific goals you have for your website?

Ask yourself:

The next article reviews the types of web design services that are available to help you clarify what type would best meet your needs...

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