As the digital face of your business, a lot is riding on your website. When you are considering a website redesign it’s an exciting prospect, but it can also be a little daunting especially if you’re not sure what will look best. At the same time, your users aren’t going to hang around if the site is displayed poorly or if any of the functions don’t work.
That’s why before you redesign your website, it’s important to narrow down the purpose of it and what you want it to say about your business. Here are 5 things to consider when redesigning your website to tell you more.
It might feel like we’re starting by stating the obvious here, but in reality, you need to know exactly who your website is going to be aimed at. Ideally, your website audience should align with your brand values. However, if you look at your website insights, these can also give you a better idea about your audience demographics.
The age and gender of your main demographic are going to influence the design the most. As an example, a children’s educational website is going to look vastly different than a website for a corporate law firm. Being clear and upfront with your website designer about who your audience is will generate the best results.
On a basic level, your website’s purpose is to raise awareness of your company. It should inform customers what you do, where you are based, what you can offer them etc. If your current website lacks any clear purpose, then this is your golden opportunity to fix that. A website can have one specific purpose or have multiple purposes. The key is to ensure the design of your website caters for the main purpose, rather than being confusing, misleading or overwhelming.
If your website is an online store, the main purpose would therefore be the sale of items. Though you may also want lesser sections on customer information, returns policies, your social media links, a blog etc. In some cases, you might not be sure what the purpose of your website is. A web designer can help you here as they are going to want to reach the potential of the project. Plus, they will need a clear brief to work on!
You need to know how many pages are required on your new website. A basic way of working this out is to draw it on a piece of paper. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to how many pages you need to have. But, when factoring in the purpose of your website, all the information and functions your website needs should be covered.
Once you have your pages, the next stage is organising them in a logical order. A web designer can help you with this if you aren’t sure. From a user perspective, it should be easy to locate the page they are trying to find. Usually, this is done in the form of a toolbar which will need to be labelled and arranged accordingly.
Last but certainly not least, when redesigning your website the layout is going to be a huge consideration. Again, the layout does come back to the purpose of your website. For example, an eCommerce store would usually have large visual elements that users can scroll through. Or, a news website will have lots of individual headlines and stories, with a smaller sidebar for less relevant content. Combining the purpose and the layout is key.
Ultimately, a poor layout directly corresponds with a poor user experience. If your website visitors can’t do what they came for (such as purchasing a product or finding information) they will simply exit and head to a competitor website instead. That’s why your website layout should be clear and easy to navigate. It’s fine to switch your layout up completely when redesigning your website, so long as these basic principles still apply.
There are endless websites that allow you to either build or host your website through them. Some examples are WordPress, Wix, Squarespace and GoDaddy website builder. A website redesign is a good time to consider whether your current hosting platform fits the needs of your business. For example, is the platform easy to use? Does it have good customer service? Are you getting all the functions or add-ons you need to run your website properly?
If the answer to any of the above is no, then it’s worth switching providers to make the most of your new design. Keep in mind that some website hosting platforms (such as Wix) don’t allow you to drag your website over to a competitor. In which case, everything would need to be started from scratch. If you’re unsure, then consulting a website developer for further information is your best port of call.
To Sum Up
When redesigning your website, there’s a lot to consider. With so much competition out there, you need to give your website visitors a reason to stay. A well-designed website that is fit for purpose is one of the best ways that you can achieve this.
If you need a little help, Bark can connect you with the top web designers and web developers near you. Whatever your website is about, having it designed by a professional will ensure it looks its best.