Redesigning your website is a significant investment that may make or break your online business. It is critical to get things right the first time and to conduct comprehensive research, planning, and implementation.
Unfortunately, mistakes are made far too frequently. Here are six of them so you can stay away from them.
Many website developments are significantly influenced by a company's marketing professionals. However, depending on your company's structure, it may be necessary to add members from other departments.
They can not only bring a new perspective, but a new website may also be able to fix issues they are having or increase their job efficiency. What features could the website offer to make their life easier or lessen the amount of work they have to do? What client input have they received that could help them make decisions about your redesign?
Learn why including a broader range of stakeholders can be a highly effective strategy in our blog post on the subject. We also have a piece about conducting internal stakeholder interviews.
More importantly, keep in mind that your users are your most important stakeholders. What do they require, what are they not receiving from your current website, and how can you improve their online experience? This nicely leads to the next topic.
You'll almost certainly end up with a site that doesn't perform well if you don't consider your users and their experience from the start, or if you make design and functionality decisions purely on opinion. In the not-too-distant future, this will result in another pricey overhaul. This is where user experience research and design come in handy.
This risk can be mitigated by making judgments based on actual observable data and conducting user research. Users should be able to find what they need quickly and easily. This will result in a favourable experience and a higher likelihood of conversion.
Personas are created as a result of this process. These represent the various types of people you have, their motivations, and the services and products they require from your company, website, and marketing. These personas can then be used to make educated decisions across your company.
When generating content and labelling products and services, it's equally critical to keep your users in mind. Businesses, especially when it comes to language, may be quite inward-looking. Remember that internal terminology and naming standards may not necessarily correspond to those of the user or what they are looking for. The effectiveness of a website, as well as good marketing in general, is dependent on user purpose, expertise, and language.
In the real world, I've seen this several times where companies have labelled and written about their products/services on their website in the same way they do in-house. However, research has revealed that this is not how their target audience knows about or searches for their product or service. These organisations' organic search performance improved dramatically after making simple modifications to product/service names and content.
Everything should be seen through the eyes of your target audience and users.
It's all well and good to design a lovely website, but is it actually deliverable to the development team? Is it feasible, and does it take performance and usability into account?
We've all been to websites that are purely vanity efforts. They appear impressive on the surface, but upon closer scrutiny, they are clumsy, slow, and difficult to use.
To build a well-rounded final result that checks all the requirements, design must collaborate with everything else involved in the web development process.
We all desire a visually appealing, attention-getting website. But don't allow flashy graphics influence your choice of a web design partner. Ascertain that they have a thorough understanding of user experience and a high level of technical development skills, and that these individuals/teams collaborate. This will help to ensure that your website does not fail. It may be a pretty failure, but it is still a failure if it does not perform properly.
This is an all-too-common blunder, especially when it comes to website redesigns and migrations. Important SEO factors will be neglected if you don't have SEO knowledge from the start.
Certain parts of a website's design and information architecture can be dictated by SEO best practises. By involving an SEO expert from the start, you can ensure that best practises are followed throughout the process and that your website is created to perform well in organic search. From the site hierarchy to the schema.
Migrating an existing site to a new domain, or even just a redesign with new pages or site structure, might put existing rankings and organic search performance at risk. This risk can be mitigated by an experienced SEO practitioner. They can supervise a rigorous migration procedure that takes into account existing rankings and links and assures thorough and careful redirection.
Imagery is important for numerous reasons. It can draw people in and create emotional responses and connections. Images can help to illustrate even complex ideas simply. An image can either show a product at its best, or make it seem less appealing. More practically, it can affect the speed and performance of your website.
Getting imagery right, and considering it early on in the process is vital.
Do you need to have professional photography done? Do you need to source suitable stock imagery? Who is responsible for image selection? Do your brand guidelines dictate anything regarding the imagery used on your website? If you need product photography, will it suit your users better to have it on a white background, or instead pictured in situ for context? Who will resize the images and make sure they will fit into the design correctly? Will image credits be required? What formats will be used?
Always be sure that image optimisation is high on the agenda to assist with website page speed and performance. Also ensure your images are properly titled, with appropriate alt text, to help with image search, and accessibility.
There are so many considerations when it comes to imagery. Don’t leave them to the last minute.