The Ultimate Guide to Website Redesign
According to a Taylor and Francis Online report, users take less than a second to decide whether or not they like your website.
Now, that’s a good enough reason to redesign your website so that it has everything it needs to attract viewers, keep them coming back and eventually turn them into buyers. While it could be a tedious, complicated, and expensive undertaking, it is important, especially when you have recently rebranded or launched a new product or service.
Whatever the reason, it’s essential to note that a website redesign can be a colossal failure if there’s a lack of clear vision from the get-go of the process. Not to worry, through this article, we will tell you how you can plan a successful website redesign for your business and make the entire process a smooth breeze.
Now, if you are ready, let’s get straight to the real stuff!
What Is Website Redesign?
First, let’s take a look at what website redesign really is. Well, it is the process of updating and changing the format, content, navigation, and structure of your website with the intention to enhance performance and convert prospects into buyers.
While some businesses consider redesigning their websites for more traffic as they grow, others do it as a part of their rebranding process. Whatever the case, it’s important to do it the right way since your website plays a vital role in your brand image and marketing.
As a matter of fact, a report suggests that more than 50% of customers think that the design of a website is an important element to the overall brand of a business.
How To Know It’s Time For Website Redesign?
Here are a few factors that can help you determine if it’s time to redesign your website:
#1 Your Business Goals Have Changed
Businesses often resort to website redesigning when their goals have changed, or they have launched new services or products. Needless to say, in today’s highly competitive market, it’s crucial to ensure that your website reflects your offerings and current goals to avoid losing your customers to your competitors.
So, if your business goals have changed in recent times, it’s best to get your website redesigned to let your audience know who you are as a brand and what they could expect from you.
#2 You Have Rebranded
Another time you should consider a website makeover is when you have rebranded your business. Rebranding involves a lot of changes to a business, including a change in logo, culture, or product repositioning.
In this case, a website redesign can help your audience stay informed about the changes.
#3 Poorly Optimized Website
If your website is not optimized properly, you might want to consider a redesign. This is because it will help ensure a better SERP ranking, better online visibility, and a smooth user journey. Believe it or not, a well-designed and optimized website can work miracles, be it in reaching the target audience, sales, and overall growth.
#4 Outdated Website
Another reason you should consider a website rebuild is if your website is outdated. For instance, if the website features content that’s too old and outdated or if it’s too slow. On that note, let us tell you that according to a report by Blue Fountain Media, 81% of users form a bad opinion of a brand if its website features an outdated design.
#5 The Site’s Features Do Not Function Properly
When considering a website redesign, design is not the only thing that you should take into account but also a good development. Having only a visually appealing website will do you no good if its features don’t function properly, as users will leave, making you lose business.
For instance, your website’s shopping cart may have bugs, or maybe the checkout process on your website is too complicated. Whatever the case, fix all your site’s features when redesigning your website.
How To Redesign Your Website?
Now, let’s take a look at how you can successfully redesign your website:
#1 Record Your Current Metrics
First things first, record your performance metrics to get an idea of where your website stands currently and the things you can work on through the redesign. It’s highly recommended that you examine your website’s monthly performance in these areas:
- Time on the website
- Bounce rate
- Keywords with the highest rank, traffic, and lead generation
- Number of pages indexed
- Sales generated
- Number of pages that bring traffic
- Total Form submissions and new leads
On a side note, consider downloading Google Analytics to receive better insights into your site’s monthly performance.
#2 Know Why You’re Redesigning The Website
Next, figure out why you are redesigning your website. You would want to ensure that you have a clear vision right from the start so that there’s no confusion, misunderstanding, and miscalculations down the road that could take you back to square one.
If you don’t have a concrete reason as to why you want to redesign your website, it’s best to skip it for now. As mentioned previously, it’s not only about how good your website looks but also how functional and feature-oriented it is. So, be sure what your goals are and tie those goals to quantifiable outcomes.
Here is a list of goals that you might want to accomplish through the redesign:
- To increase your visitors’ time on the website
- To improve your SEO rankings
- To minimize bounce rates
- To boost sales
- To increase domain authority
- To increase conversions
It’s worth noting that some of the goals that we have mentioned above are reliant on one another. Say you want to generate more conversions; for that, you first need to increase traffic as well as decrease your website’s bounce rate.
You would also want to take a good look at the metrics that you documented in the last step. Doing this will help you find if there’s anything that you would want to improve upon with your upcoming website design.
#3 Define Your Messaging
Now, before you go ahead and start working on your new website design, make sure that you define your messaging. Not only will this make the redesigning process a bit easier, but it will also allow consistency across your entire website.
Your visitors should be able to know what you have to offer, how it could be beneficial for them, and why they should spend time on your website the moment they land on it. If your old messaging is outdated and you feel that it needs to change for your business to grow, keep the change at the forefront of the redesign.
Also, while crafting your messaging, use simple, concise, and clear language and avoid using jargon, as it could be difficult for your audience to resonate with.
#4 Define Your Audience
Your website is more about your audience than yours. When your prospects land on your site, they are searching for what’s in it for them; how could it help them? Therefore, you want to ensure that you are interacting with your audience in their language by creating content and website design that keeps your buyer’s persona at the core.
For example, if you are a marketing manager at a travel company on the hunt for new business, you could have to target five different buyer persona: a vacationing family, a couple on honeymoon, an event planner, a business traveler, or a solo backpacker.
On that note, if your target audience is changing as a part of the redesigning, make sure that your branding and content are in line with your new audience.
#5 Know Your Competition
Even though it might not be the best idea to stalk your competitors all the time, it can actually help you find out where you stand. You can use tools such as Semrush and Ahrefs to evaluate the websites of your competitors and find out their strengths and weaknesses.
Other than that, you would want to take a look at their websites and make notes of the things that you like and don’t like. That way, you will be able to realize the things you can do better on your website.
After having finished your competitor analysis, make sure you compile a list of action items mentioning the key areas for improvement and the ways you can stand out from the competition.
#6 Make Your Pages SEO-Centric
When it comes to improving the metrics on your website, getting discovered on search engines is imperative. If your target audience, prospects, and visitors are not able to find you, there’s no way you can increase sales, conversions, and new leads.
That’s why it’s crucial that you redesign your website keeping the SEO aspect of it at the forefront. Here are a few tips you may want to follow:
a) Carry Out Keyword Research
Make sure that you carry out keyword research for each and every piece of content on the pages of your newly redesigned website. Upon selecting the keywords, use the best on-page SEO practices to SEO-optimize your web pages to help increase the online visibility of your website.
b) Make A Note Of Your Most Searched Pages
Use Google Analytics to find out which pages on your current website convert the most leads, bring the most traffic, and receive the most inbound links. It’s highly recommended that you don’t move these web pages from your site after the redesign.
However, if you have to move such valuable pages, ensure you form a 301 redirect strategy to retain the link value and traffic of the pages. Make a spreadsheet to track and map your 301 redirects. After that, give this document to a technical person for proper execution.
#7 Take Note Of High-Performing Content
While a website makeover is an excellent approach to increase the performance of your website, there are several ways in which it might backfire.
We bet your current website contains tons of high-performing assets that you have created so far, and losing those because of a redesign can negatively affect your marketing goals. They could include your: high-traffic pages, most-viewed or shared content, ranking pages, etc.
For instance, if you remove a page from your site that has a large number of inbound links, you may lose a lot of SEO credit, making it increasingly tough for you to be discovered on SERPs. So, make sure you keep that in mind and proceed accordingly.
#8 Select The Right CMS Software
Next, make sure that you select the right CMS software to redesign your website. Such software is used to publish, design, and develop a website. Additionally, it can help ensure that your website is functional and gorgeous.
It’s strongly recommended that you select a CMS that you are familiar with and that has all the features your website redesign requires.
#9 A/B Test And Launch
Last but not least, be sure to A/B test your newly redesigned website before launching. You would want to know what the users think about your website because, at the end of the day, they are the ones who are going to make you money.
Once you have finished testing your website and perhaps made a few changes, it’s finally time to launch it.
Website redesigning can seem like a long ride, but it’s definitely worth it if you want to advance your business to the next level. Just make sure that you know why you are redesigning your website right from the beginning to make the process smoother and avoid miscalculations along the way.
On that note, it brings us to the end of the guide. See you soon!