You launched a website to build online credibility and improve customer service, but now it’s outdated. Fortunately, updating your site can attract and retain more customers and improve sales. “As your company’s virtual headquarters or storefront,” says Jayson DeMers, Founder and CEO of AudienceBloom, “your website should be immaculate, effective and easy to use.” Basically, it’s your company’s online representation and it needs to be top-notch if you want to drive business. But how do you do it?
Here’s a three-step guide.
If you’re making over your website, you may need to update your logo as well. A website and logo redesign is essentially company rebranding, and the two go hand-in-hand. Before you redesign your logo, ensure the logo redesign rejuvenates your company’s brand. Also, think about how it’ll affect your targeted audience. A good example is when Discovery Channel’s sister Animal Planet revamped its logo, and audiences responded not-so positively. LogoDesignerBlog.com shares the public’s confusion over the new logo design.
“Dreadful. There’s NO life in this logo whatsoever.”
“When I first saw it my immediate thoughts were: 1.) Where’s the animal? 2.) Where’s the planet? Really a sad solution to their identity redesign project.”
Ask yourself, “how far is too far?” to prevent feedback like these responses to Animal Planet.Avoid “going too far” by getting input from everyone (and not just your fans), recommends 99Designs.com. Seek insight and opinions from your customers and target demographic. What does the new design convey? Do they see something you don’t?
Remember to pay homage to everything that you have done in the past. Include components of the old logo and make sure it can smoothly integrate into your new site and social media marketing channels.
If your webdesign platform is also out-of-date, this is the time to upgrade for a better design template or enhanced features. Would a Facebook comment widget enhance your user engagement? Does your website need to be mobile-friendly? Do you want to feature a blog or install a shopping cart? Web design reviewer Top10BestWebsiteBuilders.com recommends website building platforms based on specific business (or personal) needs.
Placing second to Web.com, Best10WebsiteBuilders.com reviews Wix as an easy-to-use “drag ‘n drop” editor for creating a professional-looking website—no coding or years of expertise required. You can also choose from more than 500 stunning HTML5 templates customizable to complement your redesign and rebranding initiatives. Special features include custom domains, professional email, a newsletter builder, SEO tools and built-in analytics.
Test & Launch
Always test your site before it goes live. For blogs, A/B testing may not be the most important component of the redesign process, but an e-commerce business can collapse without proper testing. Use Google Analytics to test the responsiveness of your new site. This free option provides side-by-side comparisons between your new and old sites, checking the speed, bounce rate and user behaviors between the two. Consider the Google Analytics test to be a trial and error process so you can make the strongest impact.
Once your site’s ready to go live, create a launch plan and invite your customers to the site’s big debut. Host a Twitter party and promote giveaways. Also, don’t forget to generate buzz over your new site design and increase online visibility with a press release blast.