Advances in technology and design often outpace production calendars in today’s business landscape. Business websites offering the latest functionality surrounded by the most popular color schemes often become seen, in only a few months, as yesterday’s designs. Brands online often strive to optimize their users’ experiences with frequent upgrades and jumps to the latest trends in design, which drives the rapid movement even further. When making the leap to redesign your brand’s website, it’s often that brand’s consider some of the wrong motivations. So it’s important that you don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. What’s working works for a reason. What doesn’t work…well, that’s the reason for the website redesign. You never want to make missteps when trying to move forward with your brand.
A majority of today’s website design missteps or mistakes can be attributed to issues that have existed long before digital devices and online interactivity became the constant it is today. Some of the most common mistakes seen in today’s website redesigns include the following:
- Ineffective Project Planning: Failing to plan is planning to fail. Effective website redesigns take into account a company’s current customer base; their new target audience; the sufficient allocation of staff and resources; and the time flexibility to account for unforeseen issues or circumstances that arise during any redesign process.
- Lack of Focus on Content: While users may be initially intrigued by a website’s structural design (new color scheme, new user functionality, etc.), it is the content that will keep them on the page/or return them to your site. Smart and well-written content will keep the user wanting more, further integrating them into your product, branding, and community.
- Failing to Budget Accurately: Failing to budget properly is also part of ineffective planning. Cost overruns and staffing concerns arise when deadlines are not met. Ineffective planning often results in a redesign no one really expected or even likes.
- Failing to Optimize for Lead Generation: The purpose of every website is to achieve a positive User-Experience (UX). Users who are able to easily navigate a site, who are drawn in by the site’s well-written content and find it easy to interact with the brand via email, social or even phon, tend to become both consumers and loyal, repeat customers of your business’ products and brand.
- Failing to Develop a User-Friendly Responsive Site: A recent Hubspot survey reported that 60% of SEO marketers call mobile optimization a valuable investment. With nearly 60% of online users accessing the internet via a variety of mobile devices, any website redesign must ensure that the site is responsive to the kind of devise used to browse it. Further, branding and messaging must be consistent across device platforms as well. Inconsistent scaling or color schemes between platforms tends to negatively impact both the user-experience and user opinions on your brand’s professionalism and trustworthiness.
- Inadequate Testing: With the availability of cross-browser testing, no business should release a new version of their website until they have properly tested the redesign across all its platforms. Nothing is more frustrating to a user than new functionality that fails to work as promised. A frustrated user loses trust and rarely becomes a paying consumer for your brand. Allocating sufficient time for proper testing can go a long way in improving the user-experience and ultimately increasing online sales your website enjoys.
In today’s unending quest to provide online users with the latest website tools to optimize their experience online, companies must not forget the tried and true tenets of business acumen. Oftentimes, keeping your eye on the prize is more important than offering the newest shining object.
If you’d like to learn more about how a website redesign might improve your business website’s marketing efforts online, call Proctor Digital at 773.664.5819. We love supporting our brand partners’ in their efforts to tackle brand growth online.