When it comes to website design and development, several key areas are of primary importance. By focusing on the correct things, you will produce a website that looks great, works well, and most importantly, encourages your visitors to take action. If you need to redesign your existing site, you can ensure that you are set up for success by focusing your efforts on these seven key areas.
7 Keys to a Successful Website Redesign
1. User Interface (UI)
The User Interface is what your visitors see when they come to your website. It’s the look and feel of the site. A good UI is easy to navigate, simple to use, and clean in its design. Many of the world’s top brands spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year on researching visitor behaviors and optimizing the User Interface to encourage specific desired actions.
It’s no surprise that most of the top websites in the world share the same design features. It’s because certain designs work well and others don’t. A great piece of advice to consider when redesigning your UI is to keep it simple. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Your visitors should never need to think about how to navigate your website. Whatever they came to the site for should be easy for them to find.
Remember, if people can’t find what they’re looking for on your site, then you can bet they’ll find it on your competitor’s site.
2. User Experience (UX)
User Experience or UX is really just another way of saying the behavior of your website. How does your site actually function? What happens when people click this or that? What features does the site incorporate? And what problems are those features solving for your visitors?
When people come to your site, they should feel good, or at the very least not feel bad. If your UX is sub-par, you risk alienating visitors who frankly don’t have time to waste clicking around on a broken site that is not solving any problems for them. A great way to tackle UX design is to look closely at some successful sites similar to your site in scope and then borrow what works well on those sites.
User-testing, browser-testing, device-testing, any testing you can undertake to gain feedback on your UX will be well worth the investment.
3. Website Copy
Most websites contain two distinct types of text. The first type is content, which drives traffic to the website and offers value to your visitors. The second type is the website copy, which is basically the core of your website. This text tells visitors who you are, what you can do for them, and why they should pay you to do it.
All of the best content in the world would be wasted on a site with poor web copy. This is your chance to make an impression on your visitors, to let them know that they can trust you, and when done correctly, guide them to take specific actions, which in turn earns you revenue.
Good web copywriters are not cheap, and cheap web copywriters are not good. You can save on content creation when you first set up your site’s blog, but your web copy itself should be stellar. It’s what your visitors are going to think of when they think of you in the future. Make it count.
4. Blog Content
Content is the other type of text on your website. Understanding how search engines index websites is crucial if you want to bring new visitors to your site. Generally, there are two ways to attract new visitors. The first way is to pay Google a lot of money, and the second way is to set up a blog on your site and then regularly post content to that blog that will be of actual value to your target demographic.
Within each blog post, you can incorporate keywords, and that’s where the magic happens. By researching the specific keywords that people are searching for within your industry, you can insert those keywords into your blog posts. If done correctly, you should start showing up In the Google search results for those search terms, at least within your local region.
Good content brings people to your site, and good web copy converts them into buyers.
5. Social Media Integration
These days, more than ever before, people are connecting and interacting with businesses via social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. By not having these social tools in place, you will be missing out on a ton of potential business, and one of the best places to spread the word about your business’s social media is by having links to those accounts displayed strategically on your website.
You can hire a professional to manage your social feeds for you, which can save time but cost more money. Alternatively, you can manage those channels yourself, which will save you money but require you to spend some time setting up and updating them regularly. Either way, this will continue to be the way of the future, so you might as well leverage these platforms to your advantage.
Any website redesign should aim to incorporate at least two channels of social media.
6. Email List Building
All things considered, there is, of course, one other way to spread the word about your business and your new-and-improved website, and that is by marketing. TV and Radio Ads are the traditional avenues, but those mediums often come with a hefty price tag. Online advertising can be more affordable, but to be effective, it will also require a lengthy marketing campaign, which can add up pretty quickly.
By far, one of the best ways to generate ongoing business is to maximize your earnings from people who have already visited your site, and the way to do this is by setting up a contact or email list on your website.
By offering people a small discount or freebie in exchange for entering their email, you will be able to periodically send them info on new offers and promotions, which can encourage them to return to your website and make a purchase. Not having an email list is a huge disadvantage.
7. Pictures and Videos
Finally, when people visit your site, they are judging it. If any of the above-mentioned areas are lackluster, people will quickly form a negative impression of your website, your company, and you. For that reason, it’s important to spend the time and money required to source high-quality, relevant images and videos for your website. These media elements should fit naturally with your brand’s image and company values.
Poorly placed or low-quality media can diminish trust in the eyes of your visitors, and in a world that is increasingly competitive, you may not get a second chance to recover that trust. Treat it like gold because, at the end of the day, it is.
It’s important to examine what worked and what didn’t work with your first design. It’s incredibly rare for a site’s first design to end up being the final one, and the process of learning what works, what doesn’t, and why is one that will yield tremendous value to the person who takes the time to understand and incorporate the elements discussed above. Contact Social Media Move to learn how we can help with your website design and development project.