5 Important Considerations For A Company Website RedesignOctober 28, 2014
To begin, let’s assume you have a website. Companies that want to be taken seriously are expected to have a professional website design. It is somewhat frowned upon if you have a business but not a business website. Let’s face it, first things people ask for when wanting to do business is: “what is your website address” and if the answer is “we got none” or “it’s under construction” that may not be very appealing to your prospective clients.
Still not sure which is worse: to have an outdated website which was designed by your cousins neighbor ex-boyfriend’s wife who delightfully chooses as a starting color-palette her curtain colors and where the entire project was executed in MS Word 95. Or not have a website at all. In either scenario, you need a solid website design. I have summed up 5 most important considerations when redesigning your website.
1. Mobile first
Just to clarify, when we talk about mobile first, we are talking about a responsive website that adapts to many popular handheld devices. From iPhones to Android phones and tablets, your website will auto resize and reshape to accommodate and enhance the website visitors experience.
Believe it or not, 60% of website users now use a mobile device to navigate websites. Read here: report – internet access mostly mobile. Luckily, there are several CSS frameworks that accelerate the mobile first approach website development process. My personal favorite and most popular framework is Twitter Bootstrap, but there is also Foundation and the 960 grid system.
Google, Microsoft Bing, and other search engines are able to detect whether your website is responsive or not. Websites that are responsive will show improved search engine optimization website rankings.
So make sure to ask your web development company whether they understand and whether they are able to provide you with a fully responsive website that adapts to different mobile screens.
2. Website Esthetics
Almost 50% of your visitors will judge the credibility of your organization based on the design of your website! There, I said it, now let it sink in. Well, it’s true and let’s be honest, you wouldn’t buy something from a website that looks like shady.
To come up with a professional design for your organization is easier said than done. That’s why it is important that your work closely with your website graphics designer and be a part of the decision-making process.
Colors, shades, and gradients are used to evoke certain emotions in your clients and or appeal to groups. For example, business websites are typically blue/white, a landscapers website probably has more earthy or green colors. Don’t just pick a color to make sure the graphic designer does his homework and comes back with a proposed color palette that is appropriate for your new website.
3. Use a Content Management System
You might have never heard of a content management system or shortened CMS. It’s certainly a mouthful and you are not sure whether it is contagious or whether you can wear it. Understandably, most of our customers admit they have never heard of such thing. But once we explain “what” it is and “why” it is, they get excited. In short, a CMS is a system which keeps track of all your website pages and assets so you don’t have to. It also provides you the ability to update and manage your website content hence the name “content management system“.
We have worked with all three CMS systems extensively and can confidently say WordPress is a clear winner when it comes to ease of use through its intuitive and friendly interface.
4. Page speed
Make sure your website loads fast. Google admitted that “Page speed” is a search engine ranking factor when it comes to search results, of course, there are several dozen other factors but page speed is quite important. Imagine you type in a website address and you have to wait up to 30-45 seconds before you can actually see the content. How would that make you feel, not good!
There are several tools and tricks to maximize your website page load times, here are the top ones:
- Starting with a good reliable hosting is crucial that has little to no downtimes.
- Use content distribution networks or shortened as CDN’s
- Minifying scripts and style sheets
- Avoid bad request, make sure your website does not have pages that get in an infinite page redirect loop.
- Optimizing image size by compressing your images
- Website caching and zipping (browser and database query caching)
5. Content Strategy
One consistent factor that we have seen over the past decade with all of our clients is that most of the new website owners are not prepared for the fact that they need to deliver the content that actually makes up their website.
Hence the website primary ingredients are shockingly text and images! Without it, there is no purpose to having a website. Sounds awfully simple but in real-life it is more challenging. So it’s advisable that you have your content ready or at least thought-out to a certain extent.
Content writers to the rescue! In case you don’t have time, you can outsource your content writing to a professional writer. Costs range anywhere from $10 to $35 (and more) per page/article. However, this is a great investment considering most web content writers are aware of writing properly SEO optimized content that is error free and correct from a grammar standpoint.
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