GDD 101: How to Impact Score Your Wishlist Effectively

It can be tempting to include every feature possible on your website. Instead, implement a wishlist. Here’s how you can impact score your wishlist effectively.

GDD 101: How to Impact Score Your Wishlist Effectively
Written by Raza Kazi
Inbound marketing, HubSpot, Growth driven design  |   5 minute read

Now that you’re moving closer to that all-important website redesign, it can be incredibly tempting to add every single nifty feature you and your team can come up with. You want to show your brand new website off to the world and obviously, you want it to be better than any website the competition has ever produced.

Although, that’s not the best way to go about it. Instead, drafting up those items in a wishlist can be the more effective way of producing a brilliant website - but you need to prioritise the items in the wishlist and decide which ones are the most important and which ones can wait. Here’s how you can impact score your wishlist effectively.


Wishlists are essential when you and your team are brainstorming ideas for features and design changes to make on your website. You need to keep your users in mind and effectively determine which items are going to add the most value. You can’t just assume how impactful a wishlist item is going to be either. Instead, there are some useful steps to follow.

How Should I Impact Score my Wishlist Items?

When you’re ready to launch your website, it’s not always a wise idea to include every single feature. That’s a crucial error made in the traditional web design method. Think about it, if you’re throwing every feature possible on your website, how can you improve from that even more? You can’t learn effectively about user behaviour and you can’t make impactful changes down the line.

When you’re brainstorming about your new website, you could have a list of 100 or more amazing features or items you want to include. Instead of placing them all in, you need to figure out a way to determine which ones should be on the website right away and which items can wait for a later date.

The best way to impact score every single wishlist item you have is to run an 80/20 analysis on them, as well as creating a hypothesis statement for each one. Let’s run through what they mean.

Run an 80/20 Analysis

Before you can launch your website or as you’re improving it, you need to sort out which wishlist items need to be featured on the website first. It’s not always a case of getting rid of the low-priority/low-impact pages. Instead, they can be implemented at a later date (based on research from user behaviour) and by that time, they could be high-impact items. So, just keep adding to it during brainstorm sessions.

An 80/20 analysis is seen as a ‘best practice’ method and it’s quite a simple way to impact score your wishlist items. Reminisce back to your days during Christmas where as a child you’d make a long list of all the presents you’d want. The ones you wanted the most always sat on the top few lines and the ones you weren’t desperate for but would have wanted anyway were towards the bottom of the page. This is where the 80/20 analysis comes in to determine the level of priority and works hand in hand with the next step to determine the impact score.

To do this, review your wishlist with your entire team and then identify 20 percent of the items that will produce 80 percent of the impact and value for the users on your website. After you’ve identified the items that will have 80 percent of the impact, you can then move them to the side and ask whether this particular wishlist item is a ‘nice to have’ or a ‘must-have.’

If it’s the former, then it can return to the GDD Dashboard as you don’t need it right now. If it’s a ‘must-have’ then it’s a wishlist item that can be featured on the website after you run it through a hypothesis statement. Remember, the ‘must-have’ wishlist items are the most important so if they have a high enough impact, implement them first so you have a quicker launch.

Create a Hypothesis Statement for Each Wishlist Item

The wishlist items are then broken down even more. After being narrowed down to the pages that will have the most impact (20 percent of the items that will produce 80 percent of the impact and value for users), you need to create a hypothesis statement.

Here, you get even more clarity on each wishlist item and you relate it back to the goal that your website and business are trying to achieve, the expected impact and the persona you’ve been targeting all this time. To get that important impact score, you need to grab one of the wishlist items, validate that wishlist item against the goal you have set and then you give it an impact score of 1-10.

The higher the number, the more of an impact it has. The more of an impact it has, the bigger priority the wishlist item should be to get on your website as soon as possible.

An example of a strategic goal you have set could be:

Strategic Goal

To make a significant increase in marketing qualified leads (MQL) conversion rates through website changes

So, that’s the goal we’re working towards. The next step is to pick one of the wishlist items and validate the idea against the above goal. An example could be something like the one below:


ACTION ITEM ONE (What the wishlist item is)

Hypothesis Statement


We believe this to be true because [YOUR RESEARCH OR VALIDATED ASSUMPTION] (previous user testing may have shown that visitors click to leave the page rather than checking the price guide).


The idea clearly fits the goal, as the expectation is that the wishlist item is going to boost MQL conversion by a certain rate, for example. So, we might score this wishlist item an impact score of 8/10. Considering this is a relatively high score, it has a lot of impact so it’s an item that needs to be implemented.

This is just a rough example. You need to look at all of the wishlist items you have prioritised, compare them to the goal you’ve set and run it through the hypothesis statement to get the impact score you’re looking for. This is something you need to do for each wishlist item so you have an impact score for all of them. You might find that a handful of them are scoring impact ratings of eight or nine while others are proving to be low impact items at two or three.

When you have that score, you’ll be in a much better position to decide what needs to be on the website and the role it plays in achieving your goal and solving persona pain points. If there’s a low impact score with little value, then don’t include the wishlist item in your website as it won’t benefit the users and that means it won’t help you reach your goals.

The process shouldn’t end there either. If you’re designing your website using a principle like Growth-Driven Design, then a wishlist is always going to be important. Rather than scrunching up your wishlist items once you’ve implemented some, go through the items all over again and give them an impact score to decide which items will be on the website next. This will then be organised on your GDD Dashboard and assessed when you plan the next phase of GDD.

The wishlist items you continue to add, however, aren’t just items you randomly think of one day. Instead, it’s all based on user behaviour and once you’ve analysed that data, then you know which items need to be added or changed to help reach those goals. That’s how you can get the most effective impact score for your wishlist items, rather than a score that’s inaccurate.

There’s a lot More That Goes into Creating an Effective Website

Websites can quickly become outdated and there’s always the search for a new method that will help websites become less stale and stay ahead of the curve. With traditional web design, that’s just not possible as all of your eggs are in one basket and there aren’t any changes that can be made until the next redesign years down the line. So, you can wave goodbye to those important wishlist items.

GDD is a newer approach that lets you continue implementing your wishlist items without the need for a costly redesign. Wishlist items are just one of the many factors that contribute towards GDD being a tried and tested method. 

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