Getting a new website is fun and exciting, but a redesigned website doesn't automatically mean you'll find success with it. Too many businesses make the wrong assumption that just because it's new, it works. That's just not the case. A website redesign should be carefully thought out, planned, and while it might seem like an interesting thing to learn, it really should be handled by the pros.
So Where Do You Need to Start With Your Website Redesign?
1. First and foremost, determine who will be involved with the process. This can be 1 person or a small team, but we'd recommend no more than 5 individuals when it comes to design topics. Too many people will muddy the waters and slow down the process significantly.
2. Outline exactly why you are redesigning your website. You should have a good reason for doing it, not "just because". Before you go any further in the process, do this step. It's important to get it on paper and not just in your head. If you have a folder for the website project, make this the cover page so you see it every time you open the folder.
3. Now that you know why, outline your expectations from the newly redesigned website. How do you envision the end product? Anything from colors, wants, needs, functionality, fonts, etc. can be included. But remember, you should also be leaving some of this to the pros so when you hand over your expectations don't say "I need exactly this."
For this aspect it's helpful to find examples of websites that you like AND dislike. Explain what you like and what you dislike about each.
Generally we talk about this more from an inbound marketing perspective, but it's also important for the overall design of your website. Traditionally you would think about this as a "target demographic" or "target market", but a buyer persona would go further than that. A good buyer persona will tell a story about your BEST BUYER.
If your website designer can picture who they should "speak to" with the look and feel, they can do that with layout, imagery, fonts, pictures, colors, etc.
5. Clearly define the actions you want to website visitors to take when they are on your website. Some of this may have been considered in the above steps, but this should be more concrete. Defining the desired actions of the visitors will help your designer layout the site and strategically place CTAs.
These 5 steps can get your website redesign started off on the right track. This focuses more on the look and feel aspects of the website, so you'll have more things to consider in regards to functionality.