By: Keith Neubert – Bayshore Solutions Management Team

At Bayshore Solutions we’ve been fortunate to work with a wide variety of companies across a myriad of industries.  We’ve delivered successful projects of all sizes, scopes and requirements based on our proven methodology.  With those experiences, I thought I would share 2 quick steps to think about when your web project ideas start taking shape and you’re about to embark on a request for proposal.

1. Defining what success means for the project

It’s important to look at your web project as a objectively as possible and not to get caught up in chasing the Joneses.  Projects that fail are those that don’t clearly define what success is to them and don’t have the requirements in place to support those goals.

When you approach your web project start with a basic question like: “If my site was up and running 6 months from now how would I know it was successful?”  There a lot of possible answers to that question and probably new questions that come from those answers, which is ok!  But eventually all requirements that are defined need to be measured back to those original answers around what success truly means for your project and your business.

As you’re working with a web partner, make sure those questions and answers are clearly defined, and if we’re thinking in terms of a proposal document,  these are right at the top.

2. What you want vs. what you need

As part of the team here at Bayshore that works with customers to define those goals and requirements I’m constantly looking for solutions in support of the key requirements but I’m always surprised at how technology does its best to try to get you to chase what’s new, what’s hot and what’s ultimately not what you need.  When developing requirements with your web partner make sure you’re clear on the difference between the ‘wants’ vs. the ‘needs’.  Again, if your gauge for success is let’s say ‘a 10 times increase in form submissions,’ then anything that does not directly affect an increase in form submissions should be questioned.  Not necessarily ruled out, just questioned, evaluated and agreed to what it will provide.  This process repeated will eventually lead to a list of ‘wants’ vs. ‘needs’.

A solid web proposal should address ALL requirements and have a plan for measurement based on the definition(s) of success.  The importance of thinking through these 2 quick steps is that it will ensure alignment to end goals, allow prioritization of requirements and allows a web partner like Bayshore Solutions to do what they we do best – deliver a solution that drives brand/creative, technology and marketing to meet your definitions of success!  Need help with this process?  Let our experts work with you through the process and maximize your chance for success!

Keith Neubert is a Vice President at Bayshore Solutions—a Tampa Web Design, Web Development, and Internet Marketing Company.

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