Is It Time For a Website Redesign?
You'd have to be pretty satisfied with the performance of your website not to occasionally look at it and wonder if it's time to redesign it. After all, everyone likes putting on a new look from time to time, it attracts attention, and it's often even fun.
However, website redesign is not something to be undertaken lightly. It's time-consuming, costly, and must be performed with an overarching strategy behind it. You need to have a clear reason for doing the redesign and specific goals for your new web design, to ensure it truly advances your business.
Why Do You Want A New Website Design?
In my view, there is really only one answer to this question:
Because you want more leads and sales.
There are a lot of possible reasons for a website redesign, and not all of them are good. Simply being tired of your current look isn't enough, if it's drawing in customers. (Don't you think Cadbury's marketing guys get tired of royal purple?)
Just because your competition redesigned their site also isn't a good enough reason to redesign. Hold back and see how they do instead.
Finally, if it's been less than two years since the last redesign, just don't. Companies that change their branding too often look indecisive, and they risk alienating, confusing, or just plain losing customers.
Basically, a website redesign should be a "last resort" measure, when you're looking at problems with your online conversions that simple changes to your marketing strategies won't fix. Whatever you come up with, you'll be stuck with for at least a couple years, so you've gotta make it count.
Preparing for a Website Redesign
Before even thinking about what your new website design might look like, you need a clear look at where your old site is at.
1. Get Analytical: Get an analytics tool - try Google Analytics if you need a free one - and track your numbers. See how your sales, Calls to Action and landing pages are performing, as well as "second tier" statistics like pageviews and bounce rates. Start thinking about new goals you want to hit.
2. Do a website audit: Here's the tedious part. You need a complete breakdown of everything on your site. CTAs, landing pages, blog entries, videos, portfolios, ebooks, all of it. You need to know everything you have, including their original URLs.
3. Track your inbound links: Your analytics software or your server records (or both) will have information on who has inbound links to your site. You need to know who's linking to you and what they're linking to. Begin thinking about which ones to court for exposure when your new site goes up.
4. Let's get ready to redirect: If you don't use them already, you or your server guy need to learn about 301 Redirects and how they can save you from losing a lot of inbound traffic due to URL changes.
5. Look for material to update: Even if you can't audit every blog, at least check everything you have behind a Call to Action to ensure it's up-to-date and relevant. Keep notes on which ones may need to be revised or redone.
6. Do a new keyword survey. Ahead of the redesign, use a keyword tool (Again, Google has a free one) to get a current perspective on your site's keyword performance and to discover new keywords.
At this point, you should have a good foundation upon which you'll build your new website design. Tune in next time when we start digging into the nitty-gritty of planning a site redesign!
Call DeepSky Marketing to find out how you can create profitable marketing strategies for your company. DeepSky Marketing is a company that provides businesses with profitable marketing systems and verifiable return on investment (ROI). To schedule a brief no-cost consultation call 707 823-3888.
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