Tips for Digital Suppliers –
Before rushing to start work on a new ICT project for a client, it is crucial that you
take some time out to discover the need behind their investment. This will help to
ensure that the solution you are delivering does the job required of it, but will
also provide a valuable point of reference for the project, particularly those with
long or challenging timescales.
As part of a series of ‘Tips for Digital Suppliers’ created by The Centre for
eBusiness, the following questions are designed to help you take a client through
the reasons behind their desire for a particular product or solution, identifying
unique elements to the project and ensuring that both parties start out with a
mutual understanding of the project and its purpose. The purple text contains
prompts you may wish to use if clients are unsure how to answer.
1. What is your main objective for the solution/tool/website?
e.g. What business function are you looking to support? How will you know if it is
2. What are the top three challenges for your solution/tool/website?
e.g. Pressures of time, budget, lack of resource, engaging with ‘customers’?
3. Who is your target audience?
e.g. Who will be the primary users of the solution/tool/website? If you have
multiple users, can you group them?
4. What will your target audience do on your solution/tool/website?
e.g. What action will your ‘customers’ complete? (Buying, booking, learning,
making contact etc)
5. What is the most important consideration from a user point of view?
e.g. Look and Feel, ease of use, quantity of information, number of products etc?
6. Does an existing visual identity (logo, colours) exist or will this need to be
created as part of the project?
e.g. Have you got a logo? Company font/typeface? Is there a particular style you
are keen to showcase?
7. Can you list three reference sites/tools and explain why you like them and why
you feel they are appropriate references for this project?
e.g. The sites don’t need to be directly related to your business; you might like
the look and feel, or the functionality, or the calls to action etc
8. Do you require your website/application to be developed using particular
e.g. Where will the website be hosted? Will it need to complement and other
software or tool?
9. Where will the content from your website come from?
e.g. Have you got a team in place to develop content for the site? Does the plan
to develop the content fit with the plan for the development of the website?
10. Is there anything else you want to tell us about?
e.g. Is there anything we need to know about the decision making/sign-off
process in your business? Is there a particular event or deadline we are working
So there you have it - 10 fundamental questions to ask to ensure that the project
you are supplying runs smoothly from the start. If you require any additional
information or advice about meeting the needs of your customers, don’t hesitate
to get in touch.
This concept was inspired by digital supplier Ryan Foster Design, who specialise in
web development and ecommerce solutions for businesses.