The main problem with any website is the need to keep it up-to-date. If you do not maintain a website properly, it will quickly become stale and ultimately outdated. When this does happen the only solution is to rethink and redesign.
The costs involved in designing a website can be high and the whole process can take weeks or even months. The process requires detailed planning, good decision making, lots of research and all of the previous content must integrate seamlessly with the newly created design. Not an easy task.
However you decide to redesign your site, it must justify all the costs involved for both owners and valuable users.
Reasons to Redesign Your Website
There are many reasons to redesign a website, such as:
- Your website has been created using out-dated design trends and techniques.
- Your website lacks many modern features, which is becoming an obstacle in improving the user’s experience.
- Your website has architectural flaws (poor categorization and navigation).
- Your website is slow and needs to be redesigned to improve its performance.
- Your websites current design does not have the capability to increase company’s profits.
- Your website does not fulfill the demand or direction of your brand.
After reading the possible reasons, you may have made up your mind to redesign your website. For this, let us take you to the next decision-making step. In this step you’ll learn how to choose the type of redesign for your website. Just changing the color is not enough to redesign your website. You may have to redo all the coding, turning the whole website upside down. You may have to add new features and remove old ones.
Before making the decision, talk to your team, especially your developers. Keep your budget in mind and then decide what should be added and what should be removed. For better understanding, the following factors should be considered while researching with your web design team:
Factors to Be Considered
What is the purpose of your website? What is it all about? Does your website convey the basic concept or method of the business you own? Do you want it to just present basic information about a particular topic? Do you want to convert it to a social media site to encourage your business and promote it in a different manner? Before redesigning your website, consider all of these factors related to the purpose of your website.
A website is not just about branding. If you are willing to make it a blog and want to keep it frequently updated, then you should be aware of content management systems (CMS). But a CMS is not the only option for having an updated website. Other, better options are available too.
Before redesigning your website, do not discard all the important elements of previous design. Ask your readers what they liked about your previous design. This can be as simple as your logo or the whole navigation section of your website. Take note of what works and what does not.
Now, eliminate the parts that are creating any problems and then remove those parts that you feel are not necessary. Now, keep your own choice in mind. Think about what you have always wanted to eliminate from the site. What are the areas that engage the readers? Is there any part that is becoming a hurdle in search engine practices? Take suggestions from visitors who have never visited your site before. After that, go to your regular visitors and ask what they would like to change or what they would like to see improved. This will help you filter significant suggestions from a large number of elements.
Do not choose everything according to your choice. There may be several elements that you like that may be disliked by your users.
Do you remember the last time you redesigned your website’s layout and logo? If you do not remember, then you definitely need to redesign your website now. Before choosing a logo or layout, think about what layout is suitable for your brand. Make sure that you are not totally changing the design of your website. Sometimes, recreated websites do not fulfill the need of a brand, so be careful in this regard when redesigning your website. It may be possible that your previous logo was outdated and you now want to redesign it according to your brand’s requirements. For this, there is no other option but to turn the whole website upside down.
Sometimes an ordinary redesign is what your site requires to clean out all the dirt and attract more customers. However, a redesign that does not have the capability to bear the weight of your decisions can end up with even worst results. Make sure that the website you have created is suitable for both search engines and users.
Story in the Best Way:
Your website is considered your business’s face. You may have an account on all the social networking sites, but having a website is far different. Your website is your business’s reflection. It is the only place where your customers will read your story.
Show your creativity and think about how can you tell the story of your business in the best way. If you have a marketing company, then mention its success stories right away. If you are a photographer, include photos on your home page. If your company builds homes or does home improvement, mention your latest projects and testimonials. Your website must reflect your business and should convey your message in the blink of an eye.
Before redesigning your website, search engines must be kept in mind. Your site’s accessibility must be smooth and clear so that spiders can easily crawl through it. Make your new website’s titles stronger. Start your keyword research again and observe if you are following the latest trends. See if your site’s internal linking is properly optimized. If your previous website was not getting much traffic, then identify the keywords that are attracting (or not attracting) visitors. In your whole budget, keep the big part for SEO before turning toward other aspects. SEO can make or break your traffic rank, so first apply SEO practices and then follow other redesigning steps.
After this research step, the first thing you have to do is develop the complete structure of your website. This step does not take a lot of time as you are redesigning your website and you have the basic structure ready. You just need to make some changes; the design determines whether it needs big changes or simple small ones.
Never change the architecture of those pages that have been successful in the past. Rather, just remove those pages that have become an obstacle in your website success. Redesigning a website gives you a chance to get the ball in your court. When planning the new structure, start with a sitemap. You really need the proper direction when redesigning your website, and nothing else can guide you better than a sitemap.
Do not confuse your readers with your website’s sitemap page. Keep it simple and design it in such a way that it gives a proper idea of where the required content is situated. The function of a website map is to guide the readers. If it doesn’t fulfill this purpose, please don’t add it. Don’t keep your readers guessing about where should they go. Instead, design a good sitemap and follow it.
Another important aspect that you should consider in the technical part of your website is the wireframe. Wireframes provide the appropriate location of content. Think of the wireframes as web page blueprints. They help you determine the importance of content and its place with other important content. In most cases, individuals redesign their website because the previous wireframe did not work according to the latest updates and didn’t fulfill its purpose.
When creating your website’s navigation, just stick to the common guidelines followed by everyone. Make sure that you are not confusing your users with false navigation. In order to make it easy for your users, display navigation on each and every page so that your readers won’t find it difficult to navigate through their desired content. You can use different navigation styles and types, but for the basic architecture, you should only rely on the sitemap.
Go through all the content from your previous site design. Decide whether it should be edited, or removed. Remove or update any content that is incomplete, incorrect, or outdated. Categorize the remaining content. Go through your previous brochures, newsletters, and files to see if there is any useful content you can add to your new design. If your website does not have a supplementary article blog or section, then add one as it is really necessary for a successful site. Remember, effective and engaging content is your string aspect. Get as much benefit as you can from your high quality content.
Visual Enhancement Side
The proper use of colors has a strong influence on the appearance of your website. Color theory can be followed in order to reflect the right theme. Colors play a significant role in the design of your website, and choosing them effectively is one of the hardest tasks. You can’t just prepare a list of all colors and choose the first 6 or the last 6. The use of colors requires proper information. Every color reflects your business. You can choose your favorite one too, but make sure that it will look good. For instance, you shouldn’t use pink for a blog on cars or brown or black for a girlish website. Another option is that you can mix different colors to create a good look. For more information about colors, take a look at this infograph.
The first thing that you should do for your layout is understand what your visitors actually want, then use this information to prepare your layout. Here, I am not referring to visitors’ needs; I am referring to the user-friendliness of your website regarding layout.
Design is synonymous to the text of your website: It is as important as design and plays a vital role in making your site more user-friendly. When you are working on this typography part, make sure that you are following the basic rules and color theory as well. Remember, optimizing text in the form of typography equates to optimizing usability, accessibility, graphic balance, and usability.
From a technical perspective, practicing typography on a website is not a tough challenge, but from a design point of view, it is. Several things are required in this practice, such as font embedding, replacement techniques, and safe fonts. Keep one thing in mind: Typography is a “field” and hiring a professional with experience and skills in this field would be a better option.
Now your site is ready to go. The time has come to put it on the new production server. Check all the technical parts of your website. Launch a newsletter to let your readers know about the new design of your website.