The 4 pillars to a Growth-Driven Design mindset


December 15, 2016

Growth-Driven Design (GDD) is a website development method and a marketing strategy and project management, model.

According to HubSpot’s Growth-Driven Design Founder Luke Summerfield,  traditional methods imply a greater risk for those who implement this new strategy because it is all “based on assumptions” and it is “static for an average of two years,” while GDD is made based “on actual data and with constant growth.”

You’ve gone so long to decide to change your website design. You’ve paid the retainer and taken so much time revising and approving every single area of your website. It’s taken nearly five months- two months overdue.

Then, when the site is live, you realize that it’s outdated. Your products have evolved, and your team has changed, and your marketing and sales reps tell you that people are just not logging in for some reason. And now, you need to wait two years before investing in a brand-new website.

👉  Related post: The Knowledge Behind Inbound Marketing

Lack of planning can get the company out of control. Why?

Imagine you’re digging a tunnel across a mountain and you realize that it was short of opening in the right destination when you finished the exit.

Would an engineer do that? No, his team would probe the terrain every hundred yards or so to see what they were going in the right direction, that the surrounding rock was strong enough or whether it needed to reinforce certain legs up ahead.

In terms of design, we’ve planned every step of our road ahead, instead of checking that the road we were drafting was going the right direction.

Why are we not probing the work of our online marketing or design agencies? You’re risking too much not to afford a continuous improvement process. Why? You’re treating your site as a product, a cost, instead of a sales asset: your best salesperson. Are you checking its ROI?

Luke Summerfield asks several questions.

  • What to work on?
  • What’s more important?
  • Priorities and processes?

How to create a growth-driven design mindset? Summerfield tells us that there are four pillars:

1. Focus on the user

Usually, we focus on what our business wants. Having a functioning website implies understanding users' challenges, what types of customers they are, and the buyer persona you want to target. Content and design need to be aligned with the goals of the client.

Don’t overthink it. We usually spend much time planning our website without testing it, and we base ourselves on hypotheses and conjectures instead of what the user tells us in the site stats.

To do that, we need to ask our customers questions about their navigation habits.

2. Think with unbound creativity

When you’re planning, think outside the box with your team. Think big. Don’t let your current budget constrain you.

But after unleashing that brainstorm, put your feet on the ground to see what is an immediate concern, what issues are scrapable, and what questions could be put later after getting user testing.

3 out of 4 dollars are invested in constant improvement, and one should be spent in new assets to create content and ideas to nurture the buyer persona.

👉  Related post: How Growth-Driven Design can Help you Build a Better Website

 3. Get Stuff Done

Do you feel the chills when you have an empty whiteboard? We call it “analysis paralysis,” or that mental blankness.

You want the perfect website. But that doesn’t exist. Sooner or later, you need to go live and collect data, and it’s impossible to be on the drawing board forever.

That is why Inbound Marketing and Growth-Driven Design rely on various tools to review what is going on.

  • Heatmaps.
  • SEO analysis.
  • Session recordings.
  • Churn rates.

These can help you make critical decisions. For instance:

  • Putting certain information in a different place on the homepage.
  • Replacing a clickable icon to your landing page, from the place you put it to the place people intend to click on it
  • Adapt website copywriting after updating its SEO keywords.

If you still feel overwhelmed, divide your tasks into bite-sized chunks.

Imagine you’ve got 2 problems:

  • A critical long-term problem that takes up most of your time but is not functional can take up to 3 weeks to address.
  • A faster short-term one that takes 4 days but can help you improve your conversion rate.

What do you do? You go one small step at a time.

4. Always be learning

As we’ve said before, we’re all in love with our products and services. However, it doesn’t mean that your buyer persona will fall at first sight. So don’t take anything for granted in your drawing-room. Instead, learn from the customers and talk to them.

You’ve come a long way into deciding to change your website. Would you please get involved in the process to secure its ROI?

How was your previous website design process? What would you like to improve?

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My name is Izzy and I am a co-founder of CRM Toolbox, an award-winning HubSpot Solutions Partner. I lead our team of consultants who provide professional guidance to help businesses implement the HubSpot CRM platform migrate, integrate their tech stack to HubSpot to create a seamless environment for sales reps to use. There is nothing I love more than solving the challenges that come up when someone wants to migrate an old system or integrate their tech stack with HubSpot - it's like a puzzle!

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