Develop a communication brief

A new website should begin with a plan that will help you use the Internet to meet your objectives and the needs of your visitors. Investing time to ask and answer specific questions will help ensure you have the content and functionality your visitors expect.

Summarize your project:

State general project information, goals and relevant background information. This paragraph should be an overview of the project as a whole. Here are some questions to ask:
  • What is the primary purpose of the website?
  • What organizational units will be promoted by this website? (List all that apply)
  • Who will be the primary contact for website administration?
  • How will content be developed and managed?

Profile your target audience:

Provide enough detail to enhance everyone’s understanding. Include some audience demographic information. Use these questions as a guide. Add some of your own. UAB websites often have multiple target audiences. Answer the questions below for each recognized target audience.
  • Who is your target audience?
  • What are the secondary goals of the site?
  • What is a typical task the visitor might perform? For example: apply, register, log on, search for information, submit an email address, request more information.
  • What brought them to the site? Why would they be enticed to return?

Develop a timeline:

Don't forget to include time for testing, revision, user feedback and final approvals.
Devise a site plan. A site plan can be as simple as a sketch on a piece of paper or a plan that resembles a table of contents for a paper.