Over the last few weeks we have been chatting to a number of clients about possible website redesigns. The biggest question we pose to people is “Why are you redesigning the site?”. Although this may seem like an obvious question, many clients can’t answer it.
Your website is a representation of your business in the online world- make sure it represents what you do! There is no point having an overly complex website for no reason. Like with everything in business, sit down and work out who you are targeting, how they will interact with the site, and what you want them to do at the end of their time on the site (buy? email? call?).
Understanding your client’s knowledge base is an important part of website design. If you are dealing with clients who are not very tech savvy, don’t make a whiz bang flashy site that they have no idea how to use! A simple site may yield better results for this cohort. On the other hand, if you are trying to display your creative side (whether you are a designer, website builder or an artist), a potential client would expect a very visual site, which would serve as an online portfolio.
A website is no longer an afterthought in marketing your business: some businesses base their names on what URLs they can buy! Just like if you were setting up a physical store, you wouldn’t just throw it together on a whim, spend time in the planning phase to ensure there are no issues later in the life cycle of the site.
There are always plenty of different stakeholders in a website design process. Marketing, usability and SEO are just some of the factors, however if they are not all accounted for, the website is destined to have issues at some stage in the future. It may not be in the short term, as your business may not have grown yet, but if the usage of your site increases, do you have systems in place to account for the additional business?
It would be remiss of me to discuss website design and not mention SEO. There are many different ways of creating a functioning website, all of which can make a fully functioning website, but not all of them are SEO friendly. If your SEO provider can be present in the planning phase, then it can save a number of headaches later on in the process. Communication between all the parties is the underlying message in this stage.
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