The #1 Reason Websites Fail
There are many reasons that may lead to your business or company website failing to do its job. By failing I mean failing to meet it operational objective rather than its aesthetic intent.
Just like any application development process can fail to fulfill its operational design goal, a website can also end up as a terrible waste of time and money.
While there are many reasons that lead to such regret, the number one reason is:
Incorrect Problem Definition
Usually the process or interaction goes like this…
A web designer or developer gets a call from an unknown admin from company X, who proceeds to explain that their company needs a website ASAP [ It’s always ASAP for some reason 😉 ].
The web developer quickly realises that they need to have a face to face because the requirements are barely recognisable from the phone conversation, the language mismatch being the big culprit here.
That effort leads to a very short meeting where the said admin relays that management wants a website…soonest, a three/five page. How much? Often that is all!
That’s what leads to major problems.
A successful application development process begins with a complete and unambiguous requirements gathering step, so would a successful website project. It is an application too after all….a web application.
When this step is glossed over, it often leaves the developer to decide what are the requirements. Since the developer is not a member of the organisation, this is bound to be a hit or miss thing. Like shooting in the dark. It will lead to a generic solution that will fit most businesses as “envisioned by the developer.”
Since the requirements were unknown, this can lead to many unfortunate and costly developments for both the company and the developer (aka….FAIL), amongst them are:
- The increased number of re-works, which leads to frustration for the developer
- Projects running late, which increases costs for the organisation
- Incorrect project goals
In the end a quickly compromise is agreed upon and the website is up and running. There are a few problems with that. The major one being the website doesn’t do anything for the company, it has indeed failed to meet its “OBJECTIVE.”
In the next article I write about why a proper requirements gathering process leads to a successful website!