The project kick off was a meeting with the principals to get a clear understanding of the business strategy and objectives that would help them grow their practice. These included updating their website to (1) better showcase their expertise, and (2) explain the scope of services and locations where services are available, as well as (3) providing access to related information resources, while (4) making everything available and easily usable on screens of all types and sizes; (i.e. responsive mobile design.)
Point 4 is notable because more than half of all searches are now from a mobile device, where the "real estate" (visible screen) is minimal, and users' impatience is maximal. What we used to call the "six second rule" for capturing a visitor's attention is now probably closer to four seconds on a smartphone.
One logical response to this culture of pervasive impatience is to adopt a minimalist approach to design and messaging. An extreme (but beautiful) example of this is the current apple.com website, where other than the navigation bar, the only thing visible "above the fold" is a gorgeous photo of the two iPhone X phones (stacked) with "Welcome to the Big Screens." and two links underneath.
Besides the navigation bar and the product name, there are a total of five words on the Apple website, before you scroll the page down. That's what we call minimalist.
Of course, as the world's most recognized brand, Apple doesn't really need to explain who they are, what they do, how they're different from their competitors and why they can be trusted. This works for Apple. But for most companies, this spare, ultra-minimalist design is far less than optimal.
Our experience tells us it's critical that our clients' websites are clean and uncluttered, while (nonetheless) resonating with a clear, compelling story about what they do, who they serve, and how they're better than their competitors, while building trust and guiding the visitor to the next click.
And remember, this has to happen in four to six seconds! It's not easy, but getting it right creates a competitive advantage (relative to the online competition) precisely because it's difficult to achieve.
You can see the end result of our process in this case at our client's relaunched website: Kidney Care of Michiana.
What comes next is equally important to driving growth: A well-executed online marketing program to help boost the new site's search engine visibility. This will put them in front of the right audience, at the right time, in the right place, to help them achieve the business objectives that fuel sustainable growth, well into the future.