In this age of technology, it’s important to stay on top of current trends. This goes for your website too. There are so many advances and changes on the web that if you want your website to stack up against competitors, you need to make sure it is up-to-date and relevant to your audience.
There are many reasons a website may require a redesign. You may have grown as a business or revamped your images, colours and branding, perhaps you are not getting the traffic you would like, or it may just be that your site is looking a little dated. In fact, over 75% of our clients come to us to redesign their websites.
Whatever your reasons are, a website redesign can have a huge impact on your bottom line. Of course, you want that impact to be positive.
That’s why we’ve put together a list of the top 5 things you must consider when redesigning or migrating your website.
1. Choosing the right website builder
For our clients, we use WordPress. It is reportedly the most popular website management system supporting more than 60 million websites. We recommend it because of the user-friendly content management system (CMS) that allows website owners to easily update the website themselves if need be.
Moving across to WordPress doesn’t mean you will lose all the time and resources spent on your existing website. The migration process is easier than you might think and we do this for you. Always be sure that a backup is created of everything and download it. This way, if anything goes wrong during the process, your backup will allow you to restore the website to its previous state.
2. Assessing your content
A successful migration hinges on evaluating your current website and seeing what is working and what is not. Assess the structure of your content and develop strategies to improve it. When updating, you want the website to improve the user experience and better serve their needs, make your site more visually appealing, improve the display of content and ensure that you optimise your site so it ranks higher on search engines. This way, potential clients will easily find you, which helps to generate more leads. Decide what is working and what is not. Only then will you be able to have a clear plan for moving forward.
3. Ensuring compatibility
Ensure your site is compatible for web and mobile devices. WordPress offers responsive websites which means you don’t need to have a separate mobile site, and your users can switch easily between devices. According to Google, 90% of viewers tend to move between devices to complete a task, and 74% of the users themselves say that they are more likely to return to a site if it is mobile-friendly. Ensuring your site is mobile friendly is imperative to your website’s success. It is also important to cross test browser compatibility which means viewing your website in multiple browsers to ensure it displays correctly.
4. Organising your Navigation
Think about getting into your user’s heads. Understand their motivations, how do you think they might move through your site, and speak directly to them in their language. Ensure your navigation is intuitive and easy to follow. You don’t want hundreds of dropdown menu’s or pages that take multiple clicks to find. Descriptive labels in your navigation are good for search engines and for your users so it’s worth taking the time to ensure your labels are as clear and descriptive as possible. We have some ideas in our Tips for Website Navigation blog.
“Users interested in a specific topic usually don’t care in what format the information will be delivered to them; they are focused solely on finding answers that will address the question they had in mind.” – Aurora Bedford, User Experience Specialist, Nielsen Norman Group
5. Optimising is Key
You may still be learning all about websites and one important part of website is Search Engine Optimisation, also know as SEO. Search engines, such as Google, have “web crawlers” or search engine bots/spiders that browse the Internet and your website, reviewing your content and adding it to their search engine index. Keyword research, page optimisation and image optimisation are all key to helping your to move up google ranking. You can use a tool like Word Tracker to identify search terms that your target audience will be using. If you optimise correctly, you could see as much as a 25% change in your website metrics.
While website redesign and migration can seem pretty daunting and complicated at first, it’s actually a very manageable and a very worthwhile task provided you approach it systematically and with the correct focus. For many the technical aspects of moving a website, design, security, finding the correct plugins and SEO can seem too daunting and we understand. You can always use experts to do the job for you, that way you can stay on top of your business and not have yourself tied up with your website redesign and relaunch.
At Start Smart, we can take care of your redesign and get your site optimised and looking professional in no time.