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Top 10 Considerations When Planning A Website Redesign

on May 28, 2009

Your website is a resource for your current and potential customers as well as a sales channel. Use your site to build brand recognition, credibility, and utility.

According to MoreVisibility (morevisibility.com), “It’s never too early to consider reevaluating the performance of your website and investigating the viability of a redesign project – large or small. But, whether it’s a complete rebuild or a ‘look and feel’ facelift, redoing all or part of your site can be a daunting and scary task. Even if you know your site isn’t performing at the level you need it to, change is nerve racking, and there is no guarantee that you’ll feel confident knowing how to “fix” what’s wrong and get the site in better shape.”

According to the white paper (linked at the end of this article), you should keep these ten key components in mind when upgrading your website:

  • Points of Conversion

    What do you want site visitors to do on your site? Purchase something? Make a purchase decision and find a retailer? Sign up for your newsletter? Something else? Identify these objectives first – make a list of each action you would want a visitor to take – prioritize them and plan them into your site redesign.

  • Aesthetic Look and Feel

    Does the website still match your brand? Does it seem outdated in its use of imagery or multimedia components, such as flash and video? Is your site design in-line with current usability trends? With the bar constantly being raised on these components, you need your site to “keep up with the times” to reflect positively on your brand.

  • Content and Content Management

    Does your site contain all the content that your visitors are looking for: text, PDF documents, imagery, and videos? Is it managed in a way that makes this content easy to control and update? A content management system (CMS) that suits your needs makes it easier to update any site – leading to fresher content and a better visitor experience.

  • Organization/Taxonomy/Information Architecture

    Organization of content. “The naming conventions used to identify navigational items, headers, and text, all serve an extremely important role in orienting both users and search engines throughout your site.” Any redesign process should spend time on these aspects before a graphical design is created.

  • Functionality

    What do you want your site to “do” for your visitors? This can range from helping them “buy” a product to configuring a custom multi-product solution that is right for them or a login that allows visitors to save information on your site. If there are simple tools your customers need – develop them and put them on your site.

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

    It is likely that a majority of your traffic already comes from search engines. Imagine doubling that… Moving to a SEO-oriented platform can do this.

  • Timeline

    Plan ahead and be realistic about your timelines. A good redesign strategy often includes a number of “phases” to allow you to get the site up quickly and continue to improve it over time.

  • Budget and Resources

    How much time and money do you have to spend on the new site? This is an important consideration in scoping the work – taking on more than your organization can handle can lead to project failure.

  • Analytics / Results

    “When considering all your redesign options from aesthetics, to content, to functionality, etc., it is especially informative and valuable to refer to the performance of your current site via your analytics suite and closely analyze what is and isn’t working.”

  • Marketing Plan

    How will you announce your new site to the public when it is complete? Consider this when designing the site – where you will send people, what features you will announce, and so on.

 

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