Website redesign should come up on your company’s to-do list at least every two or three years. You might also have to spruce up your site sooner for a new major product launch, a company merger, or rebranding. What elements does your redesign project need?
Here’s what must go into a successful website redesign:
This guide will help you redesign a website whether it’s your first time or your fifth. You’ll learn how to approach the redesign and more about the elements you need.
To start, what exactly is a website redesign?
As the name implies, redesigning a site takes an existing website and changes it up, either in whole or in part. Like we mentioned in the intro, a company can consider a redesign for an assortment of reasons, so let’s quickly go over them.
The user experience is paramount on your website. If you have a higher-than-average bounce rate, we’d bet it somehow goes back to your site.
If your site loads too slowly, you don’t have search-optimized content, the site isn’t secure, the design lacks appeal, your site is too hard to navigate, your site isn’t mobile-optimized, or your CTAs are incorrectly placed, you will lose site visitors.
In turn, you miss out on leads and could even lose some customers.
The backbone of web design may stay about the same, but new elements get introduced all the time. When your website doesn’t keep up, your site becomes a time capsule, and not in a good way.
You can expect your competitors will stay current with their websites, so if you don’t, you’ll only get further left behind.
Customers will notice the gap between what you offer versus what your competitors do, and once more, you risk losing out on business.
Companies rarely change their website design for each new product or service they introduce, especially if they have a large roster. However, for the really big ones that should make an impact on a company’s product margin, those are worth a website redesign.
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Companies decide all the time to upgrade or move away from an existing brand and go in another direction. With your new brand could come a logo update, a color scheme change, and focusing on different elements of your company story.
You must redesign your website to match your new brand experience.
So how do you approach a website redesign? Here’s a checklist to get you started.
A UX designer is one of the parties you might hire or work with as part of your website redesign. What exactly is UX design and why does it matter when redesigning a website?
UX stands for user experience. A UX designer or a design team creates a website designed for an optimal customer experience.
If you have an existing website, a UX designer can also work on that, upscaling and retooling it.
That alone explains why UX design is so critical to any website redesign project. Without it, your site might not prioritize the most important people: your audience.
According to software provider 99firms, when customers have a bad experience, 46.7 percent of them will talk to others about it.
Even with reputation management strategies in place, your company could still sustain damage to your name. The general public might forget, but as for your customers? That’s harder to say.
If you’re contemplating redesigning a website, take your time with the choice. You don’t want to make a spur-of-the-moment decision that you may later regret.
The 7 points we’ll cover in this section will help you gauge whether your website’s current state warrants a redesign.
What kinds of site visitors does your website attract? Almost none of your audience should be accidental.
Instead, through your company’s marketing and advertising efforts, you should know what kinds of leads land on your website and roughly where they come from.
If you’re not getting the targeted visitors you want, it’s best to check your ongoing campaigns first.
Should you confirm that all your campaigns target the correct audience, then you might decide it’s time to focus on your website.
With a redesign, you can more effectively target your audience.
Now it’s time to turn your attention to your competitors. Select three to five competitors and review integral information about them.
Where do their sites rank when you search for your services? What website traffic do your competitors attract?
How does your website compare in these areas? If you’re consistently underperforming, you should plan a website redesign project sooner than later.
Check your traffic stats next.
Traffic levels fluctuate, so you could have less traffic during certain periods than in others. That’s normal, but if your traffic has dropped and stayed low, it’s time to figure out why.
Does your company have any ongoing marketing and advertising campaigns? If so, those should drive traffic.
Perhaps it’s that your website isn’t optimized for users. You could have bad CTA placement, poor navigability, or a slow loading speed, causing users to bounce. You should hire web designers to fix the site.
Speaking of bouncing, that’s one kind of user behavior you want to monitor, but not the only one.
If your site visitors get to the shopping stage but abandon their cart or display other anomalies collected through your analytical tools, you can’t ignore the anomalies.
It helps to study them in detail to understand what motivated the customer or lead’s choice. Then you can decide what role if any your website played and opt for a website redesign from there.
Customer management software can paint such a comprehensive picture of the inner workings of your business. That includes bug reporting.
Of course, it’s not worth stressing over a single bug, but if their numbers begin to grow, you can’t ignore that. It could be time for a team of pros to comb through your website pages for out-of-date code.
If not, you have no time to waste!
In reviewing customer behavior, you should gauge whether you have repeat site visitors and how many.
If users don’t come back to your site, that points to a less than exemplary experience. While it’s worth reviewing a lead or customer’s behavior in more detail before making any decisions, a website redesign project shouldn’t be off the table.
Have you determined your company should redesign its website? Let’s go over the steps of the process so you can focus on the right elements.
The first area to start with is easy: the colors and fonts your website uses.
Both go a long way toward impacting the user experience. We all know the basic psychology of colors and what various hues invoke, but maybe not so much fonts.
Also, fonts affect readability and can confirm biases site visitors have.
For example, when you see a font like Comic Sans, many agree it looks unprofessional. That can create a negative impression of your company.
Brand analysts should study their market and look at what’s working versus what isn’t when it comes to fonts and colors. Use split-testing to select the right font and color scheme for your new website.
People change, and so does communication. Just think of how we used to talk 10 years ago versus today. People barely want to pick up the phone when they can just send a text message.
Your website is a communication vehicle, and you need to treat it as such. Evaluate your current communication channels on your website. Then look for new ways to communicate.
For example, you might add social content to your website redesign to open more communication channels.
Website themes can transform the look of your redesigned website in a heartbeat. Services from ThemeForest to Creative Market offer hundreds to thousands of themes. Some cost no money to use while others require you to pay.
If you have the room in the budget, installing a paid theme is more worthwhile. Fewer competitors may pay for a theme, which already gives you an advantage.
Even if your competitors use paid themes, the greater degree of customization allows you to make a completely different theme than theirs.
If you want to ensure your theme is truly unique, you can always develop your own! Web designers and UX designers come in handy for this type of project.
Next, go through your webpages with a fine-toothed comb.
Prune your content, removing outdated webpages that no longer make sense or aren’t bringing in as much traffic. This will help you optimize your crawl budget so Google crawls only valuable content.
Do you have a backlog of blog content on your website? As you redesign a website, you’ll have to go through this dearth of content.
Your company should ideally publish evergreen content. Any posts that aren’t evergreen need an update.
You should also update your most popular content. Maybe the original post was short, and you can expand upon it, or new research has come out since the post was published that would augment it further.
Updating old content allows your articles to rank well all over again.
To boost the UX of your redesigned website, incorporate more dynamic elements.
A dynamic element refers to an HTML element made by an Internet browser that only lasts for as long as the user has the website open.
It’s also worth going back and updating images to higher-quality versions. That said, do make sure you’re compressing the images, or they’ll quickly bloat your website and make it load too slowly!
An old website can have many broken external links, errors, and bugs. Fixing them will boost traffic and enhance the user experience.
Do you need a team of web designers to rebuild an existing website? Trust in the website redesign experts at Mediaboom. With our professional services, we’ll build you a website that achieves more of your company’s goals!
Contact us today to learn more or to get started.
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