When commissioning a new website built using Umbraco, or any CMS for that matter, its critical to have a clear understanding of your audience. During the initial scoping of the new website, you should define who you are targeting the website at in as much detail as possible.
Why it's important to have a clear audience in mind
Having a clear audience definition that clearly states their goals can make it very easy for an agency to understand what you're trying to achieve and ensures that the site is personalised with meaningful content. The audience statement supports the production of a content specification, and, during the design stages of the project, can help designers and User Experience experts to define the user journeys from which they can produce a visual design. Later in the project, these audience personas can support the testing process to ensure that all audience needs have been met.
Some organisations have very clear audience personas, enabling them to be razor sharp in their focus of user needs. A great example are Transport for London (TfL) who have highly detailed personas for the different types of Traveller, each with different goals, on the TfL website.
It's not always necessary to consider your audience in quite such detail, but the more effort you invest in audience analysis the greater you mitigate against key risks. The biggest impact of a failure to focus on audience needs is that fundamentally your new website fails to meet the needs of the audience you're targeting. Taken to extremes this won't be fully understood until the site goes live at which point correcting mistakes can be hugely costly. Other impacts of a poor audience focus include patchy and incomplete testing.
Lastly, if you're suffering from the impact of a poorly targeted Umbraco Site, you might want to consider using our Health Check service to get things back under control.