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Essential Steps to Consider when conducting a Website Design Refresh

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We regularly get asked for advice from organisations undertaking website redesign projects on what steps they should consider. Designing or redesigning a website is a significant undertaking that requires careful planning and strategy. As most of us know, these days your organisation’s website is often the first point of contact for potential customers and can make or break their impression of your brand. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure your website effectively communicates your brand's identity and offerings, while providing a seamless and engaging user experience.

In this article, we look into the essential steps you need to consider when conducting a website design refresh.

1. Define Your Goals

Before beginning any design refresh, it's critical to clearly define your goals. Ask yourself: What do you want to achieve with this redesign? You could aim for a better user experience, improved SEO, increased lead generation, or higher conversion rates. Remember, your goals will shape your design strategy, so ensure they are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART).

2. Understand Your Audience

Once you've outlined your goals, you need to understand who your audience is. Identify your target audience by considering who your customers are, their preferences, behaviour, demographics, and common traits. Knowing your audience will help inform your design choices, ensuring you create a website that resonates with and engages them effectively.

3. Evaluate Your Current Website

Before diving into a redesign, evaluate/audit your current website. Identify its strengths and weaknesses. Consider using analytics to understand what's working and what isn't. Look at metrics like bounce rates, average time on page, and conversion rates. Understanding these elements will give you a better idea of what needs to change and what elements to retain. Using an external web agency can bring the added advantage of fresh eyes and less vested interests to your evaluation/audit.

4. Analyse Your Competitors

Understanding your competition is another crucial step in a design refresh. Analyse their websites to learn what they're doing well and where they fall short. This can give you inspiration for your redesign and help you identify ways to differentiate your website.

5. Create a Content Strategy

Your content strategy will guide what information goes on your website, where it goes, and how it's organised. This includes everything from blog posts and service descriptions to images and videos. Your content should be high quality, engaging, and SEO-friendly to attract and retain users.

6. Plan Your Design

Once you have a clear understanding of your goals, audience, current website, competitors, and content strategy, you can start planning your design. Keep user experience at the forefront of your design. Ensure the site is easy to navigate, mobile-friendly, and visually appealing. Don't forget to incorporate your brand's colours, fonts, and other stylistic elements to create a cohesive brand image.

7. Develop and Test the Site

After planning, you'll need to develop your site. Depending on your skills and resources, you can do this in-house, or outsource it to an experienced web development agency. Once the site is developed, thoroughly test it. Check all the links, forms, and scripts, make sure they load quickly, and ensure they look good and function well on different devices and browsers. Once you've tested your site and are satisfied that it meets your objectives, it's time to launch.

8. Review and Optimise

After launch, continue to review and optimise your website. Use analytics to understand how users are interacting with your site, and make changes as necessary. Keep your content fresh and updated to encourage users to return.

In conclusion, a website redesign is a substantial undertaking, one that requires careful planning and execution. By defining your goals, understanding your audience, analysing your current website and competitors, creating a content strategy, planning your design, developing and testing your site, launching, and continually optimising, you can create a website that looks good and drives results.

Interested in learning more? Then why not get in touch to have a one-to-one session with one of our experts?

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