How to Redesign Your Website in 4 Steps – Focus On What’s Important
This post will walk you through the process of redesigning your website—from brainstorming, to planning, to executing, to launching your new site.
If you’re a small business owner, you’ve likely invested a lot of time and money into building a successful online presence. But even the best websites can quickly fall victim to age and neglect. We’re always in search of the latest tools and techniques that can help us improve our marketing efforts and increase the overall performance of our websites. So what can we do to get the most out of our current digital presence?
One of the most common questions we get from website owners is “What do I do when my current site is outdated and not performing well?”
If you’re thinking about redesigning your website, here are the four steps to follow that will ensure a smooth, successful transition.
First, make sure that you’ve got a good plan in place. Whether you want to overhaul your site completely or simply want to make some minor updates, your plan should outline what you want to accomplish and how you want to go about accomplishing it. This plan will make your job easier when you sit down to implement your new design.
Second, have a clear idea of what your audience wants from the site. Are they there to learn something? Do they need a sales pitch? Are they there to make a purchase?
Once you know what your site’s goal is, you can focus on making sure that the site serves its purpose well.
Finally, once you know who your website’s audience is and what your site’s purpose is, you can make sure that you’re meeting those needs.
Here are four key areas to focus on:
1. Make it responsive
2. Make it interesting
3. Make it work for SEO
4. Make it better than the competition
Two items to pay extra attention to are the Front page of your website and your Navigation.
The Front Page
First things first, when it comes to the front page, you’ll want to think about what’s important to your audience and what you want them to see. Your front page should include at least:
A clear call to action (CTA), which is what you want visitors to do after they visit your site,
Above The Fold
Your most popular content (try to position it Above The Fold), and
Must See Items
Anything else that is a “must see” for your target audience.
Once you’ve determined what to include in the front page, pay attention to your Above The Fold area. This is the area of the page that’s visible before you scroll. You want your most important information there and usually your phone number and CTA.
Make sure your headline is short and compelling, so that people will be tempted to click through. Include a clear CTA. This can be an offer, or even just a link to another page on your site. It should clearly state what you want visitors to do, and include a specific URL to take them to.
If you have any videos or other multimedia content, make sure that the CTA is accompanied by a strong call to action for those items as well. Be sure that your CTA is prominent, and that it’s large enough to be seen easily. You don’t want people to miss it.
Finally, always use a consistent CTA across all of your pages. If you change it, make sure that you update all of your links. When in doubt, always test your calls to action. You never know when a new feature will come out that will make your calls to action more effective.
Your front page is your main opportunity to grab people’s attention and convert them into leads.
Once you have your front page in place, you’ll want to think about how visitors will navigate your site. This is the order in which they will click on the various links on your page.
Start with the most important content. You should always make your homepage the first thing visitors see on your site, so that they have a clear idea of what you’re offering. If you have a product or service that’s valuable to your visitors, make sure that it’s the first link on the page.
If you have a blog or other type of content that is more informational than promotional, it should come after the homepage.
If you have a lot of links on your page, make sure that they are in order from the most important to the least.
Once you’ve determined what to include in your navigation, you’ll need to think about how to best organize your navigation. The following are some things to consider when organizing your navigation:
Use clear, concise headings
Headings are used for the main topics on each page. Make sure that your headings are clear and easy to read.
Use descriptive titles
Descriptive titles give your links a name that helps visitors understand what they’re going to see when they click on them.
Make sure there’s no confusion
Make sure that each link clearly indicates where it leads.
Make it easy for visitors to find your links
It’s helpful if your navigation is organized into logical categories.
Don’t make too many links
If you have a lot of links on your page, visitors will have trouble finding the information they’re looking for.
If you have a consistent navigation across all of your pages, visitors will be able to navigate quickly and easily.
Make It Responsive
Every web designer is familiar with responsive design—it’s the process of building a single page website that works across all devices. It helps you avoid having to build separate versions of your site for different devices.
You can have the best website, the best content, the most compelling visual design, the nicest products, and the best services… but if you don’t get it in front of people, nothing will matter. Responsive web design gives you the ability to deliver exactly the type of site you want to your target audience in any device – smartphone, tablet, or laptop.
Making a website responsive means making sure that the content and functions of the website can fit on any screen, and adapt to whatever size screen they are being viewed on. This can be done by designing the site using media queries. A media query is a code snippet that tells a web developer what screen size a visitor is viewing, and then allows them to make certain adjustments to the layout of the site. The biggest issue with mobile-responsive design is that many websites have not been created with this in mind, which means users can find the design difficult to navigate. However, with the right planning, it is possible to have a mobile-responsive design for your website.
The way people search, use, and share content on the web is changing. And businesses must change with it if they want to survive in a mobile-first world.
Make It Interesting
Today, web designers are increasingly looking at the web as a medium for more than just information. They’re using technology to create experiences that make visitors want to share their thoughts and opinions. These web designers and content strategists aren’t building static, uninspiring websites. Instead, they’re creating sites that use elements like images, motion, and sound to capture visitors’ attention.
You probably already have content on your website you can re-use. You can take that content and revise or rewrite it to ensure it’s current and relevant. We like to see around 2,000 words of content on your home page and 1,000 to 1,500 on inner pages.
Your site should be interesting and fun to browse, or it will never be successful. You don’t want it to look like a brochure or catalog that has been designed by committee and put online just to make a profit. You can create a website that’s just like the one in your head. If you think of something that interests you and write about it, you’ll likely get some traffic from it.
Make it work for SEO
SEO is the term used to describe the process of increasing your website’s visibility in search engines. This is usually done through a variety of methods, including the use of relevant keywords, the creation of high-quality content, and building backlinks to your site. Search engines like Google use certain criteria when ranking websites, one of which is how many other sites are linking to a particular page. If you have a lot of inbound links, or backlinks, then it tells the search engine that the page is authoritative and will display higher in the results. In order to get a higher rank on search engines, it is important to focus on getting high-quality inbound links. These links are crucial to the success of your SEO efforts.
When it comes to search engine optimization, there are two types of keywords: local and long-tail. The idea is that short keywords (e.g., “tire repair” or “motorcycle accessories”) are easy for people to remember and use to find your products. Long-tail keywords (e.g., “car tire repair services near me,” or “motorcycle accessories for Harley-Davidson riders”) are longer, and therefore more specific, than the short-tail keyword. Google uses many factors to determine which keywords to prioritize in a search result.
We offer more SEO information on our Search Engine Optimization page.
In conclusion, your website needs to be a reflection of you and your brand. Your website should be something that your visitors can get excited about. If your website doesn’t match your brand identity, it’s time to redesign using our How to Redesign Your Website in 4 Steps tips.
If you are considering redesigning your website, Team 218 Web Services would be happy to take a look at your website and make recommendations. We make redesigning your website Easy & Affordable!
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