Live Redesign – Requirements Gathering

I’ve always had a really hard time getting my personal site to a place where it needed to be. Here I am at version 7 (at least) and none of the first 6 was ever complete. I figure, the best way to do it is to treat myself as a client and see how the process works. I developed my own methodology around 2000 that has worked very well, with minimal modifications in the last five years. The most noticeable difference is in the requirements gathering phase (this one) where I’ve clarified, thanks to Keith, the difference of Business, Organizational and User Goals. We’ll explore those this time, and move into brand &ampl identity in the following posts.

Organizational Goals

Organizational Goals are probably the most predominant for a personal website. While I have some business goals, and obviously some user goals, I have some finite goals from an organizational / personal perspective that will make or break this site.

  • Give me an outlet for self-publishing articles about topics of interest to me.
  • Allow for publishing of a personal portfolio of various projects completed for potential employers, showing off.
  • Consolidate various aspects of my life on the web (Flickr, bloglines, etc).
  • Simple informal blog (as opposed to articles) for daily-life type stuff.

Business Goals

For my personal site, I don’t have a great deal as far as business goals go, but it would be nice to see something come of the hard work I plan to finally put into this project. As the definition of Business Goals are those that “affect the bottom line” I see them as more than financial. My bottom line as a blogger / website owner is not necessarily to make money from my personal site (thought it would be nice), but to simply have the satisfaction that what I do makes a difference.

Therefore, I’ve developed the following as business goals for this site:

  • Allow for a variety of income sources (advertising, donations, etc)
  • Provide for user feedback and suggestions (comments, contact forms, suggestion box)

User Goals

User goals are pretty obvious, but I wish to document them here so that I can checkpoint my success / failure at meeting my goals.

  • Read my indepent thoughts through informal daily blog.
  • Learn and communicate on broader topics through formal self-published articles.
  • Communicate with me / other readers via comments and other feedback sources.
  • Find new things via linkroll and other things of interest I may post


That’s a good start, I think. It at leasts gets my thoughts on the table and gives me somewhere to work from. As an informal project, pretending to be formal, I think we’ll make some pretty rapid progress having this type of information documented

Next up, Information Architecture, Wireframing and Branding.