In our previous article, we talked about the importance of design and how a logo can make or break the brand you want to build. Today, we’ll dive deeper into the significance of design and how it could determine the success of one of the most important platforms of a brand — its website.
For today’s modern athletic businesses and brands, websites are a must for building a steady online presence. While it may be true that there are several marketing channels available to their aid, websites remain to be the most effective — albeit, most critical — platform out there.
This is because, despite the influx of mobile apps and social media networks like Facebook and Twitter, a large majority of internet users and fans still look to search engines for reliable information. If they want to learn more about a brand or a business, the first thing they often look at is their website. And once they’ve opened the website, it’ll only take them about 50 milliseconds to form an opinion that will determine if they’ll stay on the site or not.
Admittedly, branding and marketing have a long-standing relationship with one another that people rarely talk about. And if athletes want to gain a good grasp of the critical role great websites play for their careers, it’s best that they explore this relationship.
How Branding and Web Design Go Hand in Hand
During the initial years of digital marketing and website design, a website’s role in the sports marketing industry strictly revolved around e-commerce activities like promoting products or services. But as the internet evolved, marketers discovered the compelling opportunities it offered for branding, and soon enough, elite athletes started creating their own websites!
But it wasn’t just professional athletes who discovered a new way of using websites, the end-users themselves changed the way they utilized the internet! The time came and showing off merchandise on a fancy-looking website was not enough to hold the attention of consumers — especially with the increasing number of sites now made available to them.
Personal brands saw that they needed to step their game up by maximizing consumer experience and the branding of their website. The changing environment paved the way for intensive research on brand building in a foreign land.
And despite the uncertainty, there are one thing brands were sure of in this new environment: its interactive nature offers them brand new ways of creating stronger brand identities that could lead to brand loyalty. It was all a matter of utilizing and investing in additional features that elevated the website experience.
Recent studies have revealed that the quality of a website, its design, and the overall satisfaction it brings to end-users positively affects their intention to return to the said site. Furthermore, the same variables have the power to affect the purchase intention of consumers and their attitude towards the brand.
If athletes want to gain positive opinions from their target audience and elicit purchase intention, it’s best that they invest in good website design and development.
But aside from this, what else can elite players gain from them?
The Dynamics Between Sports and the Internet
While it may seem like a surprise to a lot of people, the advent of the Internet has bridged a gap between modern technology and the sporting industry. The Internet takes the persona of the professional athlete to a different level.
As mentioned earlier, the interactive nature of websites offers the chance to build stronger brand identities that can translate into brand loyalty. But aside from this, sites are powerful enough to convert attention into profitable numbers that generate sales and sponsorships.
For instance, when an established elite athlete creates a website, they no longer have to worry about site traffic with their online following that can steadily supply it. And with the site showcasing their life story, their likeability increases — which then increases the purchasing intentions of a supporter.
And in turn, this amount of fan loyalty and likeability catches the attention of valuable sponsors! Because of the constantly changing nature of sports marketing nowadays, athletic businesses want to leverage the investments they make on elite athletes.
It must be remembered that today’s digital marketing sphere offers endless marketing and advertising solutions. Businesses have endless options to choose from — hence, players need to be able to raise the value of their sponsorships by leveraging the kind of attention they can bring to the table through the ultimate fan experience!
Marketing The Ultimate Fan Experience
If you’re thinking of building the ultimate fan experience for your supporters, your website is the greatest first step you can make! Again, end-users still treat websites as a great source of reliable information despite the popularity of social media platforms or mobile apps.
If they want to learn about a certain brand or a certain personality, they often look for them on search engines like Google and in return, Google provides them with links to sites that have the most accurate information they can find — and they are often websites!
Showcase your compelling life story through your website and once you’ve got users hooked, you can start inviting them for a more intimate look at your life off the court through your social media accounts!
Ultimately, the Internet takes an athlete’s personal history and takes it to astronomical heights and because of this, it’s able to bridge the gap between an elite player and its fans! If done right, websites have the power to deliver a superior fan experience and enhance relationships between athletes and supporters.
Uncovering Greatness With Web Design and Development Services
With the thousands of websites online today, it’s hard to determine which are the great ones and why — especially if you don’t have a solid background in web design and development. With this in mind, we’ve listed down four major categories that determine whether a site is great or not!
#1 There is Purpose and Clarity in Web Design
Every website up and running was created for a reason. Each of the sites we visit each day has its own purpose and a great website knows what it’s meant to do. Without a clear purpose, a website might end up looking scattered and all over the place.
Having a clear idea of the purpose of the website makes the remainder of its web design and development process much easier. For instance, instead of saying you’re building your website to increase the online presence of your business, set something more specific like making a website as the main source of prospect leads.
A great website knows what it should be and does not try to be anything else. And with a clear purpose in mind, the content, layout, and overall design of the site will translate it effectively to its visitors. The users of a great website should be able to immediately identify what they can get from its pages — and this applies to all kinds of websites.
Take, for example, e-commerce sites should be able to easily convey why it’s best for consumers to shop there. Blogs should be able to thoroughly communicate what their content is all about while sites for service providers should efficiently introduce their services to visitors.
While it may be tempting to add each cool feature you see, all the external noise can leave end-users feeling confused. Your life story must be reflected through each element of your website clearly.
#2 User-Centered Content
Ultimately, users are the ones to determine whether a website is great or not. And despite this being a widely-known knowledge amongst full-stack web designers and web developers, some still end up prioritizing themselves.
A great website should be user-centric and should feature content that interests and helps end-users. But aside from this, the site should also be able to cater to the needs of the athletes themselves.
During its creation, a web development institute will discuss what the elite player wants to achieve with his or her website. Afterward, they start creating customer profiles to determine the needs and wants of the client’s target audience. Once this step is done, the web development team keeps these goals and needs in mind upon creating the website!
For instance, end-users should be able to interact with the site and athletes should be able to interact with them conversely! If a website’s overall interactivity is increased, it increases the purchasing intentions of its visitors.
#3 Visually Appealing UI UX Design
Web design can determine the success of a website — but not entirely. The factors mentioned above play a much important role in the long run but the world-class design is what attracts users.
Despite this, the purpose and overall functionality of the site should remain to be the number one priority. Its website design should be able to efficiently improve its usability and not hinder it. And because of the constantly changing trends in web development, great websites should be able to keep up with these changes!
Nowadays, it’s not enough for websites to have a great web design in order to hold the attention of end-users and successfully turn them into interactive consumers. Each of the factors mentioned above alone cannot make a great website, but is intertwined with one another, they can!
Achieving Greatness For Clients
Building great websites is no easy feat — especially for those not well-versed enough on web and mobile solutions. It’s hard to know exactly what custom solutions your website needs. With this in mind, most businesses collaborate with the best web development company that offers great web development services.
But if there’s anything that elite players should focus on during the development of their sites, it’s the discovery sessions.
For those unfamiliar with the term, website discovery or discovery session services is identified as the phase in which intensive research is done. It’s considered the first step to developing a website. A web development firm would usually gather their UX Designers, Business Analysts, and Technical Architects to gather the data needed in building a website.
The web development company’s project managers will meet with their clients to discuss the current situation of their business, what they hope to achieve in the project. Every big or major data that’ll be gathered during this phase will be documented and will be used in building the site.
Unfortunately, not a lot of web development companies believe that website discovery sessions are necessary. Some claim that they already have a good idea of what their client wants while some say they just don’t have the time and the manpower to do so.
Despite this, it’s important for business owners to understand the role that discovery phases play in building their websites. This stage allows web development companies to explore both the client and user goals of the project, as we’ve mentioned earlier. While it may be true that web developers and designers create websites for end users, they are ultimately built for clients. Businesses have their own goals that may differ from that of the end-user.
They are the ones to have the final say — that’s why it’s important for the website development organizations to efficiently tackle and explore both factors during the discovery phase.
The sessions would usually involve the discussion of the client’s current state, what the clients hope to achieve and what their vision is for the future. Right afterward, a web design development firm will start developing customer profiles to determine the needs and wants of the client’s target audience.
This stage matters not just because it’s basically the foundation of an entire website but because it helps clients focus on one main goal. It’s not uncommon for athlete websites to try and be everything all at once — resulting in websites that are all over the place. But with the help of guided discovery sessions, they can focus on one main goal!
Work With The Best Web Development Companies Today
Ultimately, creating a website is no easy feat, and ensuring consistency to branding can even be harder without the guidance of experts. That’s why most athletes end up working with a web development company and a separate branding agency.
But in hopes of helping elite players lessen the need for time and spending, sports branding companies like Creatitive started offering the same development services as a web development firm but with great benefits!
Creatitive can help you from the creation of your brand down to your marketing campaigns! There’s no need for athletes to spend and work with several agencies all at once. And if you want to learn more about our process of marketing an athlete, make sure to stay tuned for our next posts in the series!