Mark E. Buckley

Web Site Positioning

When you develop plans for your business you need to consider your strategic positioning. For example you could pursue a Product Excellence strategy. That would require you to focus on the quality of your product and have less of a focus on Pricing, Distribution, or other elements. You might pursue an Operational Excellence strategy. This is the strategy that would focus on minimizing operation costs so that you can deliver your product at the lowest possible price. While you would still be concerned about poor quality, you would accept some product inadequacies. You would assume that customers understand that they get what they pay for, and you are providing the lowest cost product. Finally, you could pursue a Customer Intimacy strategy. While you would be concerned about product and pricing, you primary focus would be on tailoring your product to a select group of customers.

Web Page Positioning Options

In general, any web site can be measured in terms of:

  • Persuasion
  • Information
  • Entertainment

All web sites serve these purposes to a greater or lesser extent. Unfortunately, web sites often over emphasize the wrong purpose.

Most commercial sites should focus 60 to 80% of their content on persuasion. In other words you are trying to persuade the prospect to buy your product. Likewise, you are trying to persuade existing customers that they have made the correct decision in doing business with you.

Educational Institutes, Non Profits, and Governmental Agencies would generally have informative web sites. They are not really trying to sell a particular product but to impart knowledge on the general public. Perhaps there are causes to which these groups wish to persuade visitors, but generally these organizations, and therefore their web sites, should be as informative as possible.

Many artists, media companies, photographers, software designers and others are to some extent in the entertainment industry. Therefore their sites should convey this artistic bent. These sites can be flashy, dynamic, and quite the multi media experience.

P.I.E. Score

So let's define a PIE score. A PIE score of 50/30/20 would have a 50% emphasis on Persuasion, a 30% emphasis on Information, and a 20% emphasis on Entertainment.

So what is your Web Site's P.I.E. score?

Unfortunately, many commercial sites should have a PIE of 70/20/10 but instead score about 30/20/50. Why? Generally it is more fun to put graphics and flash files on a web site, than to sit down and write compelling content.

Many educational sites have a score of 10/50/40 simply because they let a 20 year old student design the site. Unfortunately the designer's tastes revolve around video games and MTV.

Many entertainment sites are pretty close to the 10/20/70 that they should be. However it would be helpful if you could actually find information on their sites.


While having a web site can be a great creative outlet, remember that their should be goals set just like any other business project. If you want to persuade prospects to buy from you, remember the adage ' the more you tell, the more you sell'. Keep the video games at home. Include helpful, informative, persuasive content.