September 2014 Newsletter

**** The 4specs Perspective

Website Strategy - Specifier verses Architect

Do you need two different website strategies - combined into one website? One strategy for full-time specifiers and the second strategy for architects and the design team? Several discussions with manufacturers last month lead me to say yes.

From my perspective, an architect is looking for one solution for today's problem and is not looking for general solutions that will work on other projects. The architect will typically turn to a search engine to look for his design information. He will land on a specific internal page and evaluate whether that product will meet his needs. You will want to focus search engine optimization on each product group so the products are found when searching.

The specifier is looking for multiple manufacturers that can solve the project's requirements. The specifier may use the information learned today on other projects in the future. You want the specifier to quickly understand the complete range of what you do and then easily find the specific information they need today.

Some companies want their 4specs showcase listings to point to different internal web pages so the user sees directly what they are looking for. Several companies have multiple domains for different product categories. I believe this strategy is to achieve better seo results. Web designers and search engine optimizers will suggest a manufacturer develop different website domains for architects - hoping that the additional domain name with no obvious link to the main manufacturer website will bring additional users to the website when searching from Google or seeing a print ad in Architectural Products (as an example).

The 4specs focus is on the full-time architectural specifier and project architect writing specifications - where you want the specifier or architect to see the complete range of products you make. The specifier may remember your company and products for a future project or as a substitution on a current project. There is also the comfort of the specifier recognizing the reputation of the company behind a product that an architect proposes as "THE" product to be used on his project.

Website design targeting a specifier should be very different. This leads me back to the WebFormat™ design I did 14 years ago. The user can quickly understand what this manufacturer does and select what they need today. Here is a link to the WebFormat information in a 2011 newsletter.

While a complete web redesign to improve specifier response may be out of your current budget, consider a new target page for specifiers 4specs can send our users to.

Feedback and questions are always appreciated.



Colin Gilboy
Publisher - 4specs
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