When redesigning your website there are some common mistakes that you must avoid at all costs.
Nowadays, many people judge your business by your website. You must have a website that creates a great first impression.
Here are some of the biggest website redesign mistakes:
Reason For Redesign
There could be many reasons your business needs a website redesign. It could be that your business needs re-branding or the content needs changing. Or maybe you have grown in size and are offering different services now.
If your website is not functioning as well as it should, that is also a good reason for a redesign.
Even if nothing is broken you should redesign your website every two years. An updated website design can create new excitement about your brand.
Before you start with your website redesign, consider everything that you want to improve.
Ask questions to come up with the goals for your website redesign:
- What is currently not working on your website?
- What is working well on your site?
- What new website features do you want?
- How are you going to market your website?
- What are your competitors do better?
- What content are you going to add to your site?
- What content are you going to remove?
- What is your budget?
- What is the deadline to complete the website redesign?
- What keywords do you want to rank in the search engines?
Lack of Planning and Research
You must do your research thoroughly so that you know what is happening with your old website and what you want to improve and happen with your redesign.
This includes such things as numbers of visitors and conversion of visitors into sales and leads. It really helps to look at your Google Analytics account to get an idea about your website stats.
Think about SEO and keywords and also marketing content. What keywords are important for your website? Where does your website rank for those keywords now? SEO should be a big part of any website redesign project.
Plan the redesign so that you can tell the web designer exactly what you require from them and your new website. There should be no room left for any big misunderstandings. Everything should be planned so that, when it comes to the actual redesign, it all falls into place just as you want it.
Obviously, there will be small things to iron out for you but, if the redesign has been thought through thoroughly, then these will be kept to a minimum.
Collaborate closely with the web designer throughout the whole process.
Ensure that all your new content is totally relevant and completely up to date. New content should be highly visible as this is probably what most of your visitors will be most interested in. Don’t wait for the content creation. While the web designer is working on your website you must be improving your website content. Write new content and update old content. Website redesign is not just about looks. It is also about improving website content.
Your website should also look tidy and organized. When visiting a website, few things put visitors off more than an untidy homepage. If the design is confusing, visitors will abandon your website.
Make sure that the pages are not confusing. Each page content must be formatted for easy reading. Large chunks of text should be broken up with headers and subheaders. Include quality images and plenty of whitespace.
A good web designer will make sure that visitors can follow the pages easily and that they flow into one another. They do this in different ways such as incorporating pagination into the design, if you have a lot of pages, or with one-page layouts. There could also be filters to make searching easier for visitors as well.
The content should also be easy to read and understandable. This is something that is often neglected, particularly on websites with a technical aspect. Not everyone is a ‘techie’ and things need to be explained in layman’s terms. Use simple language.
For example, if you have an attorney website, avoid legalese. Your visitors don’t need technical legal information. Don’t bore them with case law. Your visitors need to know that you can help them. Use language everyday people use.
As far as appearance goes, it is essential that there is a good use of color and contrast. Your web designer should know about this and will be able to advise you. Remember, though, that this very important as visitors can be either attracted or dissuaded by the correct or incorrect use of color and contrast, likewise, with the use of animations, heavy images, and flash-based graphics. This can put visitors off and not only for the look. These will all slow your website down so try not to make things too top heavy.
Blue is the safest color for a website.
Pop-up windows too can be very distracting. Sometimes it makes sense to have a popup for your website. For example, if you want people to subscribe to your email list, it makes sense to use a popup. Make sure that the popup is easily closed.
Everything about your redesigned website should be user-friendly. Apart from the basics, which we have covered, all other aspects of the site should be designed with the user in mind.
For example, if you have registration forms or suchlike, then these should be kept as simple as possible. Visitors will just not waste their time filling out long and arduous questionnaires or forms. Keep the fields on forms to a minimum. If you only really need the email address and name of a prospect, don’t ask for the name of the business and phone number. Only ask what is absolutely necessary to increase the conversion rate.
There should be a search bar on the site so that visitors can navigate their way around with the minimum of hassle.
The site should also be responsive to make mobile browsing easy, if not, this could cost you a lot of visitors.
Keep things simple!
Going Live With Your Redesigned Website
One major mistake that people make with a redesigned website, is not testing it before going live.
Firstly, your web developer should provide you with a mock-up of the site. Once the design mockup is approved your designer should build your website on a staging server. You will be able to review the website before it is made public.
You should test your website on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers.
Remember that it is always useful to have a second opinion, so don’t be afraid to ask other people to help proofread your website content. Ask proofreaders to point out any spelling or grammatical errors. Also, ask your staff to verify the website content for accuracy before it is published.
Once you have made sure that everything is in order, you are ready to publish your newly redesigned website.
Once this is done, you are then ready to go live to the world with your redesigned website!