Building a website that will stand the test of time

What are the hallmarks of a website that stands the test of time? Functionality? Design? Content? Cost?

Sure, these are valid measurements, but the biggest one is the hardest to measure – positive impact. Its result looks different to every individual, community, and organisation.

It can be as simple as people helped, a metric used by the not-for-profit organisation Fitted for Work or community facilities delivered as is the case with property developer Johnson Property Group. The positive impact is not limited to not-for-profits and they can be a tangible or intangible result such as a sentiment or awareness.



This impact will long outlive the colour of your menu or the choice of font. While these decisions are important – they fall away with time.

What stands strong is the positive impact. Much like a good book – you remember the story and the way it made you feel. But you probably couldn’t remember what the font looked like or what was on the back cover.

When Mezzanine build’s a website, we ensure that we do consider the font choice and the colours used, but more importantly we understand and ensure that it simply supports your overall long-term goal.

We always start the process by asking two questions:

  • “What do you want to achieve in 5 years time?”
  • “What does your positive impact look like?”

With these two answers in mind, we’re able to develop a plan for your online environment to help achieve your positive impact. How this might look in a more technical sense includes deliverables such as:

  • Information Architecture (IA) diagrams – the layout of pages and content on your website. Has the benefit of identifying the number of visual layouts needed, duplicate content and overall structure;
  • User Experience Design (UX) – the process of designing and refining the user journey based on factors such as accessibility, usability and successful interactions;
  • Content strategy – the planning, creation and management of content for your website. Often based off your brand strategy that can be completed as part of the Conscious Branding process ;
  • A phased development plan – understanding that you have immediate goals that need to be met, we develop a long term plan for your website to ensure that any components built will fit and be extendable for future development. We find our clients often roll out their website in three phases:
    • Initial (demonstrate the new branding)
    • Previous functionality (migrate / re-implement)
    • New functionality

Understanding not everyone has a massive budget or the need to build the biggest website with the most functionality. We ensure that anything created can easily be extended and built upon so you don’t have to keep pulling up your foundations every-time you need to add some functionality.

Measuring your website’s impact

On a day-to-day basis, it’s important to understand how your website is performing, in the most literal sense, this is achieved through something as simple as page views, the source of your visitors or number of sales. While this is valuable information and important in understanding short-term goals, to measure the positive impact you need to move beyond the statistics.

While always grounded in numbers and in conjunction with our clients, we measure things such as brand sentiment or company goals (such as people assisted). While this might seem intangible or hard to measure in some cases, it’s actually quite easy.

Brand sentiment

Something as simple as keeping a tally of questions that you can mark for new people engaging with your brand:

  • Do they know what your purpose is?
  • Do they know how you like to do business?
  • Did you have to explain your value?

Company goals

Setting some outcomes you’d like to be delivered by your company. These should be ambitious and require significant effort to complete. Think of these as stretch goals that are beyond profit or sales. They should make your company or people your company serves to feel positive as a result.

Positive impact is the true test of time, a website is simply the mode of travel to the final destination.

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