How To Write an Excellent Brief For Your Website Agency

website agency brief

Did you know First impressions areĀ 94% design-related? To ensure you get these results you need to start with a good brief. Writing a website agency brief is like conducting a well-orchestrated symphony. It’s about setting the stage for creativity and expertise to flourish, all while keeping your objectives crystal clear. Easier said than done, right? Let’s break it down for you.

Step 1: To Brief or Not to Brief?

The first question to pop is, “Do I even need a brief?” If you’re venturing into uncharted agency territory, the answer is usually a big “yes.” But what if you just need a tiny tweak, like changing your website’s background colour? Well, in that case, a brief might be overkill.

It’s all about whether you need the agency’s wisdom and strategic insights, or you’re just after a price quote. The key distinction is that in the latter scenario, you’re not seeking a strategic review or additional value from the agency.

Step 2: Best Practices for Writing a Website Agency Brief

Once you’ve decided a brief is on the menu, there are some golden rules to follow for a successful outcome. Benefits of a well-written briefing process include:

  • Involving your team from the get-go
  • Aligning outcomes with your business strategy
  • Saving time by communicating requirements clearly
  • Ensuring everyone’s on the same page
  • Flexibility to explore new ideas
  • Cost-efficiency and a solid return on investment

Agency Briefing Tips:

So, what’s the secret sauce to a great briefing? Here are the ‘Immutable Laws of Engagement’ that will help both sides avoid costly missteps:

1. Never Rush a Brief

Don’t speed through it. A rushed brief leads to time wasted later. Taking your time to outline objectives and scope right at the beginning is a time-saver in the long run.

2. Involve Relevant Stakeholders Early

Get your team involved early. Their input ensures better project buy-in and a smoother process. No one likes last-minute surprises. Every stakeholder brings their unique perspective to the table. Whether it’s marketing, design, or technical aspects, each perspective contributes to a more comprehensive and well-rounded briefing.

Stakeholders can ensure that the project aligns with your business’s strategic goals. Their insights can help to create a website that not only looks great but also drives real, measurable results.

Including stakeholders who have insights into your target audience can help ensure a more user-centric design and functionality. This is vital for creating a website that resonates with your customers.

3. Be Clear About Objectives

Think about why you need this change. Is it to solve a problem or seize an opportunity? Consider agile vs. waterfall project delivery. What’s the strategic value, and what’s the appropriate investment? Having everyone on the same page is a game-changer.

By defining your goals, prioritising them, and providing context through research, you set the stage for a web project that’s efficient, results-driven, and aligned with your business aspirations.

4. Don't Preempt the Answers

Your brief should focus on the problem, not the solution. That’s the agency’s job! They’ll deliver better results if you let them flex their creative muscles.

When you decide to collaborate with a website agency to build or revamp your online presence, it’s natural to have specific ideas about what you want. After all, your website is a vital aspect of your business, and you may already have a vision in mind. However, it’s important to remember that your chosen website agency consists of experts in web development, design, and user experience so writing a website agency brief is very important. Preempting answers or solutions during the briefing process can hinder their ability to deliver the best results

The Perils of Preempting Answers
  • Limiting Creativity: When you provide a solution or answer upfront, you might inadvertently limit the agency’s creative thinking. By not preempting answers, you give them the space to brainstorm and come up with innovative, out-of-the-box solutions.
  • Professional Expertise: Website agencies are comprised of professionals who have a deep understanding of the latest trends, technologies, and user behavior. By allowing them to propose solutions, you benefit from their expertise.
  • Tailored Solutions: Your website agency brief can tailor solutions that are uniquely suited to your specific goals and challenges. Preempting answers might lead to one-size-fits-all solutions that don’t address your business’s unique needs. For example if you require an e-commerce site, they can give you pointers and tips from past experiences which will be a huge benefit to you.

  • Wasted Potential: Your agency is more than just a service provider; they are your strategic partners. Preempting answers wastes the potential for collaboration and the development of strategies that can truly make your website stand out.

5. Don't Underestimate the Scope

A well-defined scope prevents unexpected delays and budget headaches. If it’s strategic and impacts user experience, take the time to detail the scope.

6. Ensure Alignment

Before diving in, make sure both sides understand the challenges, priorities, and the path forward. Consult with the client and exchange questions in advance. Make your agency sweat a bit and see what they come up with.

In Conclusion:

A robust brief leads to a project that meets expectations, stays on time, and doesn’t break the bank. Your solid briefing is your digital hero’s cape!

By sharing your objectives, challenges, and desired outcomes, you create a collaborative environment where experts can propose innovative solutions tailored to your unique needs. Your website is a reflection of your business, and with the agency’s creative input, it can become a powerful tool to achieve your online goals. So, embrace the partnership, and let your website agency’s expertise shine for the best results.

What to Include in Your Brief:

  • Business and marketing background
  • Audience description
  • Previous project learnings
  • User experience benefits
  • Desired user actions
  • Realistic timeline
  • User stories
  • Key performance indicators (KPIs)

Now, go forth and brief like a pro!

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Daniel Holmes

I'm a digital designer and marketer and after working in various agencies, I am now working for myself and traveling around the world while building websites for myself and my lovely clients.

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