5 questions to answer before redesigning your website (to save you time and money!)
Out with the old, in with the new: are you embarking on a journey to redesign your website? You might be ready to leave your outdated website behind and start afresh.
But before you start tearing apart the walls of your online home, there are a few questions you’ll want to ask yourself so you can save time and money and create a website you absolutely love.
Because the thing is - redesigning a website isn’t just about knocking down a few walls and applying a fresh coat of paint.
It’s about checking the foundations by taking a holistic view of your audience, messaging, user experience and only then, the design in itself.
Taking the time to answer those questions will save you a lot of time and money in the process - so let’s get started.
1 // Why do you want to redesign your website?
It’s the #1 question I ask my clients during discovery consultations: why do you feel like now is the time to redesign your website?
The most common answer I hear is ‘my website looks outdated’. And sure, you might hate your fonts and colour palette. But this likely isn’t the only reason why you want a redesign.
I’d encourage you to dig a bit deeper.
Has something changed in your business? Is your website not performing the way you’d hope?
- You're not getting enough enquiries
- People complain about the user experience
- Your website doesn't reflect your business anymore
- You've gone through a rebrand
- You've pivoted your services
- You want to raise your prices
Knowing what’s motivating a redesign is the best way to focus your efforts.
It’s the reason why I always start projects with a discovery consultation : to better understand why a client needs a redesign so I can recommend the best plan of action.
2 // Where would you like to see your business in 6 months? A year? 3 years?
The next step before starting a redesign is to ask yourself: what are my long-term goals?
If you're spending the time and money on a redesign, you want it to do the heavy lifting for you. You want to ensure your website evolves with your business so it can support you in reaching the next level.
For example, a business coach might have a goal to start giving workshops and speaking on stage within the next year. Knowing this, we can build her website towards that goal, by implementing functionalities to help showcase her expertise - such as a powerful blog. We can ensure that every detail of her website portrays her as an authority in her field and builds her credibility.
With this in mind, I kick off every website project with a 60-minute strategy session to discuss my clients’ goals and what they hope to achieve in the long term.
3 // What’s working and what’s not working on your existing website?
Once you’ve clarified your goals, it’s time to assess what’s currently working on your website and which areas need improvement.
The first way to go about this is to ask your target audience for feedback. Is there anything they find confusing on your website? Does the copy resonate with them? They’re your primary users and listening to them is crucial in order to create a website they want to use.
The second way is to arm yourself with some data by exploring your site’s analytics.
You need to find out things like:
- How long do visitors stay? If people spend less than 10 seconds on your site, it could mean your content doesn’t resonate with them.
- Do you have a high bounce rate (when people land on your site and leave without taking any action)? If so, it could mean your visitors don’t know what to do on your website so they leave - which should prompt you to revisit your user journey and call-to-actions.
- Which are your most viewed pages and least viewed? Perhaps some pages aren’t as relevant to your audience as you initially thought.
When I work with clients, we compile this data so we can be sure that every decision we make is aligned with their main purpose.
4 // Has your target audience changed?
Your website starts with your audience - has it changed since you first built your online home?
This is especially true if the redesign is motivated by a rebrand or a pivot. From your messaging to your visuals, your website should appeal to the people you’re selling to and a shift in audience should prompt you to revisit your website as a whole.
Even if you believe your audience hasn’t changed, a redesign is a great opportunity to revisit your ideal client profile and ask yourself if their needs and priorities have changed.
When I work with clients during a strategy session, we spend some time fleshing out their target visitor profile. We talk about what problems they’re facing, how their solution solves those problems, potential objections and how we can build their trust. And that’s only scratching the surface!
5 // How do you feel about maintaining your site?
The last question is more focused on the tech and how easy it is for you to maintain your website. How do you feel about the current platform you’re using?
Are you using a website builder like Wix and seeing some big limitations in what you can do?
Or did you build your website with Wordpress and want to pull your hair every time you need to make security updates or edit your site?
Finding a platform you’re comfortable with is key to ensure you make the most of your website - instead of it being a piece of technology you stuff in a virtual drawer because it’s too much of a headache to deal with.
As a website designer, it’s important to me that my clients feel secure updating their website, which is why I take the time to understand what functionalities they require and how much time and budget they can dedicate to maintaining their site, before I recommend a platform.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Redesigning your website can be a lot of work - and it requires planning. By taking the time to answer those questions, you will be much more prepared to lay down the foundations for a website that will support you for years to come.
Considering a redesign of your own?
If you're not sure whether your website needs a complete redesign, then I'd love for you to join me on a free Assessment call: 3 easy ways to improve your website.
During this free 30-minute call we’ll:
- Review your existing website and identify what’s working and areas for improvement so you can understand where your website is holding you back
- Talk about the main mistakes people make on their website and the 3 easy ways you can improve yours to obtain more engagement and conversions
- Leave the call with 3 personalised action items you can implement immediately so you can increase your conversions, feel more confident and ultimately grow your business
I love connecting with business owners who want to take their business to the next level and am so excited to support you with your website!
Author: Chloé Meresse
I’m Chloé, the designer and web strategist behind Milk Tea Web, a creative studio specialising in strategic branding and website design.
With nearly a decade of communications experience in my back pocket, I help purpose-driven businesses create strategic brands and websites that clearly communicate their mission and everything they stand for.