For many organizations, their website is the face of that organization. Consumers today often start researching companies online before engaging them in business, so it should come as no surprise that a well-designed website can be the difference between success and failure. When it comes to a website redesign, meticulous planning ensures effective execution so let’s take a look at the 5 main steps in planning a successful website redesign.
Know Your Audience
Your website is a fundamental piece of your overarching marketing plan. What do we know about good marketing? You need to define your target audience and build your plan from there. The same is true for your website.
Ask yourself who visits your website and carefully reflect on which pages get the most play (i.e. which pages are most visited, how long are pages navigated, and how do visitors access pages on your site). By carefully evaluating your target audience, you’ll know which kinds of people are visiting (prospective versus current clients, job prospects, employees, vendors, or even competitors), why they are visiting, and how they’re visiting (mobile versus desktop versus tablet).
Once you’ve defined your target audience, you can optimize your site redesign in a way that directly impacts your bottom line. Realistically, if your target audience is prospective clients, your goals will be different than targeting current clients, for example.
Goals and Objectives
Speaking of your goals, you need to know these before you redesign your site. Are you hoping to generate leads? Are you selling products online? What are you hoping to achieve with your new website? Your goals and objectives will guide the redesign process – work closely with your design experts to ensure your website reflects your ultimate goals.
Draft a Sitemap
Before you can redesign your website, you need to know what information will be included. Drafting a sitemap will not only help you keep the redesign well-organized, but it will also help you estimate the time and resources that will be needed for the project. You can start with your current sitemap and make adjustments (additions and deletions) as needed.
Set a Budget and Get Estimates
After defining your audience and goals and drafting a sitemap, you’re ready to set a budget for your website redesign. Typically, a redesign will include services such as developing a marketing strategy, creating content, SEO, design and development, and quality assurance. If you’re unsure how to budget for your project, seek estimates from reputable website design and internet marketing firms. Collecting a few estimates will help you assess an appropriate budget while also comparing the services of competing firms.
Choose a Point Person
Finally, identify your go-to person for overseeing your website redesign. Choosing a point person (or a couple point people) can streamline your redesign while allowing collaboration between key stakeholders. Your point person may be the ultimate decision maker, or somebody you trust to oversee project developments while communicating with your main decision maker(s) with as little time wasted as possible.