Confused about the website redesign process? Unsure of what to expect and what might be expected of you? Here’s a quick rundown of the steps involved in the majority of website redesign projects. Your web team should be able to review this with you as well.
Your website redesign team’s goal is to better understand your business and ultimately how the website can benefit your overall marketing and business objectives. Some of the things you will tackle during the discovery phase include:
- Build your list of must-haves for the website
- Determine if there are any applications or functions that need to be built into your website
- Build out the list of pages for the website
- Determine who your website’s primary and secondary audiences are
- Collect any design and branding requirements for the project
- Organize the website page templates based on the content
Unsure of how to prepare? Collect information from your employees about what they want to see from the website. Some employees’ thoughts and opinions may weigh more than others, but what’s important is that all of you are engaged in the process!
After all the information needed for the website design and development has been collected, your website team will produce designs for your review. They will consider best practices for website design. Here are some of the website elements the designer will bring for review:
- Page designs for each unique template (your homepage will look different than any other page of your website, as an example)
- Buttons and other calls-to-action (CTAs)
- Email templates for your newsletters, notifications, etc.
Vital to the website redesign process is building effective content – meaning the text and graphics that will appear on each page. Whether your staff is writing, or the web team you’ve hired is approaching the project, the developers will need the following to help build the website:
- Text for every page of the website, including error messages and form fields
- Images for each page as needed, whether that means stock photography, photo assets you already have, or some combination of both
Another area that you may consider with your web team while building content is the keywords your content should be optimized for. This simply means which keywords you want your website to show up for on the search engines; these should be used throughout your website copy. This may involve using keyword research tools to collect a high priority list of keywords.
Your web developers, once they have designs to work from, will produce HTML templates for the website. They will also program any functions needed for your website. Your team will also consider any programming best practices. In this phase, the following things will be done:
- HTML templates set up for review
- Forms, functions programmed
- Content (text, images) added to the page templates for the website
- Test the website templates for different browsers (Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari)
Sometimes, before a website launches, you will actually take the website to a sample of your audience to make sure everything makes sense. It’s always nice to have extra eyes on your site before going live!
After you’ve reviewed the temporary (development) website, and you’re ready to push live, your website team will do the following:
- Make sure old URLs will point to the new URLs (if they have changed)
- Point your domain to your new website
Have more questions about what to expect when moving into a website redesign? Contact us – we’re more than happy to answer your questions.