So you’ve taken an objective look at your website and decided it could do with a little overhaul. This is probably a good move; it’s estimated that visitors take only 0.05 seconds to form an opinion about a company based on their website design. The last thing you want is for that opinion to be ‘old and outdated’.
The process of redesigning a website is quite different to building one from scratch. To start with, you already have considerable assets (photos, videos, and branding) to work with. Whether this is a good or bad thing depends on how happy you are with your current web design.
You may also have an idea, based on past analytics, which design elements your customers engage with and which they do not respond well to. This type of information is incredibly valuable when considering the UX design of your new site.
Finally, you most likely have the bones of your content — the ‘About Us’ section and contact information. The process of redesigning also provides you with the opportunity to audit what content is outdated and what needs to be added.
If you’ve recently hired a web design company in Melbourne to revamp your existing website, here’s what else you can expect from this exciting process.
The web design team will bring expertise, skills, and experience to the project. But ultimately, as the business owner, it is your job to articulate your vision for your new site. Initial conversations will be centred around what you like about your current website and what you want to change. It could be worth providing examples of sites you do like, whether it’s due to their colour scheme, how they’ve arranged their content, or the way they’ve employed responsive web design principles.
These initial conversations are also useful for establishing logistics, like the cost of the project, whether or not you will need to take your current website offline for a short time while the redesign is being completed, and how long you can expect the process to take.
Research and intel
Now that you’ve done your part, it’s time for the web design team to conduct their own research and intelligence. Designers are part artists, part psychologists. It’s their role to interpret how people interact with products and design a website that is engaging, user-friendly, and functional.
During this stage, the web design team might come back to you with questions so that they can refine their research and approach.
Planning and wireframing
In web design, wireframing is a two-dimensional sketch or outline of how a page will appear. Think of it as a blueprint, which enables both client and designers to play around with the size, placement, and orientation of content.
Wireframing provides the opportunity for collaborative discussion regarding the look of a page. Having signed off on the wireframes, the design team will then move onto the actual process of building your site.
Testing is an incredibly important stage that will either prove a design team right or cause them to reconsider their approach. UX testing provides the opportunity to better understand how users interact with a page and what steps need to be taken to improve the usability and functionality of your new site.
When it comes to web design, there are many tools that can be used to test usability. These programs can do everything from producing heat maps that track user movement to software that provides A/B testing, should there be an element of the design you’re undecided on.
Skip over the testing stage and you risk ending up with a final product that may look good, but fails to fulfil basic usability requirements.
Finally, it’s time to deploy your new site! You might choose to make a big fuss of this event, sending out emails and announcing the revamp on your social media platforms. This can be a great way of encouraging old customers to come back to your company and can also draw the attention of new potential clients.
Alternatively, you might choose a no-fuss approach, particularly if the changes to your site are fairly minimal.
Either way, it’s a good idea to monitor for bugs and kinks for the first few days, as new users visit your site and provide valuable feedback.
If done correctly, a redesign should leave your website looking fresh and modern for many years to come. It’s an exciting time for your business, with the chance to seriously increase your online engagement. Your next step? Speak to a web design company in Melbourne today about your digital hopes and aspirations for the new year.