Web Design Blog : Toolkit Websites

Web Design Blog

Toolkit's Guide to: Your Website Brief



When you get in touch with a website design company, the first thing they are going to want from you is a brief.

What do you want? What do you do? What design styles do you like? And so on.

In order to be prepared and to have an idea of what you would like to have, before being asked, take a look at some of the information below which you may want to think about before embarking on a website project.

It's not the end of the world if you're unsure about how you want the website to look. But having key points about your business and an idea of what you want the website to do for your business is a great start. We can come up with the creative, you can supply the facts!

1. The title for the website.

This is simply what your website title will be. For example, ours is our business name. The logo wording uses this title, and the title is displayed in search rankings when we are searched. Sometimes the title may be different to your website logo. Apple for example don't have any lettering in their logo. So their website title is "Apple."

Another example is a catering company called EG Catering. But their website title might be "Unique and Bespoke Catering for Events."

2. How would you describe your services/ products.

For example, if you had to tell Google where to categorise you in terms of industry, what short sentence could you sum your business up in?

Ours is: Web Design Southampton.

3. Who is your target audience?

Have you thought about this? Do you have a particular target audience or is it more generic?

For example, if you are a care home, you may want to target the relatives of the elderly or the elderly themselves. This will be something your web designer will take into consideration when building your first draft.

If your website is going to be accessed by elderly people, then than might mean the font will be larger and clearer, and the navigation simple and easy to use. If you had a website more complex and modern, your target audience may have difficulty accessing the information they need or are looking for.

4. Who are your competitors?

It's a good idea to outline your competitors, because we can take a look at things they are doing that might be beneficial to you also. For example, if one of your competitors is particularly active on Social Media and as a result have a great ranking in Google, it might be worth you doing something similar!

Of course we would never recommend that you copy or mimic closely, something a competitor is doing, but it's always good to check out the competition and improve on it/ do it better!

5. Do you have a domain name?

If you don't have an existing domain name, this is where you can have a think about what you would like as your website address. We've discussed this in a previous blog post which might help you in terms of deciding on what you'd like to register.

6. Do you have a logo? 

This is an important one. We will need an electronic version of your logo, and in a good size and resolution to be able to use it within the website design. If you already have strong branding that you want to keep to, we'll need to see the logo prior to starting any work. We will need to use the colours, font style and other styling from the logo that will dictate the design.

If you don't have a logo design, and you want us to create one for you, having a general idea of the fonts you like, any icons or style you like is a bonus. Google images is a great place to find logo examples and designs that you may like, and can send on as ideas.

7. Who will be our main contact for the design?

It's so important to have one main point of contact for a website build. Why? Design is subjective, so one persons likes may be another's dislikes. Having a single person as a point of contact for the website design is beneficial to the process of a website being designed because it means there is no confusion. Updates and ideas are coming from one person and being sent back to that one person.

If you are a team or committee that need to all agree on the website design before going ahead with it, that's absolutely fine. The main point of contact can be the 'middle' man. They can be the ones that discuss the designs with the team, and then feedback all updates required to the web designer.

8. Do you have a specific deadline?

We will need to know a rought estimate of when you need the website live for. Some people may have a strict deadline due to marketing or adverts going out, some may be more relaxed and want to spend time on the project and get it live when it's ready.

It'll be beneficial to us to know what you're aiming for, so that we can schedule the build accordingly and make sure progress is maintained.

9. Functionality

You'll need to let us know if there is any functionality needed on the website. For example, if you intend to use PayPal buttons to take payments online, or if you need a Facebook or Twitter feed embedded into your site, let us know.

Usually we can do anything you request, but we will need to double check that your requests are compatible on our platform. Not only that, but there are some things we may recommend against especially when it comes to responsive or mobile design.

Having as much information as possible about your expectations and/or needs helps us give you exactly what you are looking for. And it makes for a much smoother and easier process!