The Master Marketer BLOG

Simplicity is the Key to a Website Redesign

Posted by Jeffrey Schmidt on Wed, Oct 31, 2012 @ 2 AM

Welcome to the third part in our ongoing series on doing a website redesign. The past two installments have all been about preliminary work - cataloging and research you need to do before truly starting the redesign itself. Now, it's finally time to get on to the meat of your new website design project.
First of all, be aware that a redesign takes significant time - generally around 4-6 months. In fact, according to Hubspot, only about half of site redesigns actually launch on the planned day. So, make sure you've got backup plans in place in case your redesign gets delayed.
From there, the your new website design revolves around two main elements: the look, and the content.
You've Got The Look
When it comes to deciding on a style for your website, the single most critical factor is the user experience. When website visitors are asked what the most important aspect in web design is, fully three-fourths of them will say that it needs to be easy to find what they want.
Simple elegant website designs
So, if you want a slick modern look, that's just fine. However, you need to remember that form MUST follow function in web design. Looking sleek and cool, by itself, isn't enough. The website needs to be easy to use to begin with, and then have the graphic design enhance that.
  • Try to reduce all menus to their most important elements. Don't overload people with options.
  • If you sell products, arrange them into logical categories with plenty of cross-referencing within the website to make navigation easy.
  • Generally speaking, if you need more than one permanent navigation bar, your UI is probably too complex and needs to be pared down.
  • Optimize for bandwidth. Compress everything that's compressible. You'll save on data fees, and you'll be more accessible to mobile users.
  • Avoid third-party plugins like Flash whenever possible. They're bandwidth heavy, slow to load, and are often incompatible with mobile platforms.
Finally, if you're looking at multiple designs and not sure what you like best, ask the Internet for advice. This is a perfect opportunity to get people on your blog and social media interested in your website design saga.
Updating Content
Even if you're updating your front page and sales pitches, chances are you can leave much of your existing content alone. Doing an audit of your blog for accuracy and relevance is nice, but that's a project that's beyond most people. Just remember those 301 redirects if your URLs change.
However, when you're redesigning your website, you'll miss out on a big opportunity if you don't update your Calls to Action and landing pages while you're at it.
  • Recolor your CTA buttons so they continue to stand out against your new color scheme.
  • Add video. A short video (<1 minute) can be extremely effective in driving conversions.
  • Much like with the rest of your site, keep your landing pages short and to the point. Generally, the shorter the web form, the greater the conversion rates.
  • Place all your CTAs "above the fold." That is, at the top of pages so the user doesn't have to scroll to see them.
Also, a website redesign is a great time to expand your social media presence. Now's your chance to integrate social media into your site with buttons and links all over the place. Make the most of this opportunity.
Proceed Slowly
It seems obvious to say, but take your time with your web redesign. Commission multiple layout proposals. Do test runs with beta designs to see how people respond. In short, try to get it right the first time.
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.
Posted by Jeffrey Schmidt

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