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Written by The Mezzanine Group
on August 18, 2011

In most companies every 2-3 years you will hear your marketing director saying something along the lines of “hey guys, it’s time for a website redesign,” But is it really?

Have you taken a look at your analytics to see how many leads your website is currently generating? Have you taken note of which pages offer the most inbound links? Do you know if your website is performing well already? Do you know what makes a good website?

These are all important questions to ask before embarking on an expensive website redesign project. You want to make sure you are designing with your website goals in mind, not just adding a pretty landing page.

Website redesign is more than just having a great modern looking website; it should become an ever-evolving and iterative process. Your website should become a living breathing thing…something that requires constant attention, a daily watering if you will.

Hubspot recently held a very informative webinar titled “The Science of Website Redesign” and provided lots of very helpful tips to consider for companies thinking about redesigning. They provided a very helpful ‘cheat sheet’ that covers a list of items to consider before starting a website redesign project.

Website Redesign Cheat Sheet

Before:

  • Know your website’s purpose
  • Get metrics in place
  • Set a goal for the redesign – have metrics for that goal
  • Benchmark vs. competitors
  • Audit website assets to protect them

During:

  • Protect your marketing assets
  • Test usability with real users*
  • Build the new website with tools that empower your team (CMS, LP, blog, analytics)

After

  • Continue to test and optimize
  • Measure against goals
  • Keep building your website – more content, more offers, etc.

Companies to assist you with user testing:

  • Five Second Test Five Second Test helps you fine tune your landing pages and calls to action by analyzing the most prominent elements of your design.
  • Feedback Army Simple, Cheap Usability Testing for Your Website.
  • Loop 11 Loop11 provides remote usability testing that enables you to test the user experience of any website and identify navigational and usability issues.

Redesign does not simply mean incorporating novel and unique design elements. It is important to make sure your redesign makes sense in terms of navigation, specific calls to action, providing value, etc. Your new website must be intuitive. It is incredibly important to constantly update your website to make it more dynamic – adding things like blogs, social media icons or video integration for example.

TAKEAWAY:

Website re-design should not happen in one fail swoop. It is a constantly evolving effort over time; an iterative process

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