How to Prepare for a Website Redesign

So, it’s finally time to redesign your business’s website. Maybe you’re frustrated because you’re not making any money from it, or maybe it just looks old and embarrassing. Regardless, it’s time to get it refreshed. But how should you manage this project?

Many people don’t know how the redesign process works, so they go straight to hiring on a web designer or agency without ever preparing themselves for their role in the project. This can slow down and complicate things, and can make them vulnerable of being taken advantage of by predatory web development companies.

Although stepping into a website redesign process can seem frightening, we’re here to simplify it for you by providing a simple to-do list to equip you to hire a great designer, set them up for success, and ultimately create an effective website that looks great and brings your business more business!

Don’t feel like reading a list? Just message us in the chat box or leave us your phone number or email in the form below so we can get in touch and help! We’re friendly, experienced, and based right here in the U.S.

The Checklist:

1. Determine your goals and constraints.

Before you begin reaching out to web developers, determine your project goals. What would your perfect website do? The clearer you can be upfront, the easier it will be to know exactly what you need from a developer.

When thinking of your own goals, ask yourself questions like:

  • Is this website primarily designed to persuade new visitors to purchase a product (often the case for sales businesses)?
  • Is it supposed to show your credibility (as may be important to law firms and physicians)? 
  • Is it important for you to appear in Google Search results?

 

Then consider any constraints you might have, including:

  • Do you need to edit the website yourself afterwords?
  • Do you need the website to integrate with any specific tools or services you’re using?
  • What are your time or budget limits?

 

Many people get confused on the last point. Although different developers and agencies can operate at very different rates and timeframes, the safest way to determine what standard pricing looks like for the website you’re looking for is just to ask several different agencies for an estimate. Most are happy to do so after a brief phone call.

2. Get ready to talk about your business and your brand.

Any credible web design agency will be concerned with getting you a great result. They’ll talk more about your business — your goals, obstacles, and opportunities — than they talk about their own services.

Don’t get overwhelmed if they start talking about different web technologies or opportunities. Stay focused on what their tools and possibilities mean for your business. Connect everything to your bottom line; don’t be afraid to ask how what they offer helps you achieve your goals. And who knows, maybe they’ll have a few new ideas to help you leverage your website to grow your business.

But in order to talk about your business well, make sure you know your brand. Make sure you have a logo developed along with other branding materials, such as a style guide or a look book. Some web designers can help with this; otherwise there are many branding agencies happy to help.

By equipping yourself to talk about your brand and business well, a web design agency is equipped to offer you accurate quotes and useful opportunities. And they’ll really want to work with you, because you’ll seem driven and well-prepared.

3. Gather a list of other websites you like.

The best way to ensure you get what you’re looking for is to come prepared with a list of your favorite websites. Find a few websites that you’d like your new website to look like, and find a few that seem set up similarly to how you’d like yours setup.

By coming prepared, you give your web design agency something to talk about. They can look at the features and styles used in the sites you like, and show you what elements they can integrate into your new site.

4. Expect excellence!

Before you pick up the phone and call a web development company, make sure to begin a conversation by making your expectations clear. Many salespeople are happy to talk over the phone, and are great at simplifying the complexities of the web in a way that just makes sense. They’ll be happy to hear any questions you might have, and will want to make sure you’re confident in the process before beginning.

Unfortunately, however, we’ve all had bad experiences with web development agencies that speak in ways that aren’t clear, or don’t listen and appreciate questions that arise. Frankly, our advice is simple on this one: Don’t do business with them! There are far too many great agencies out there that would much rather have your business.

5. Consider working with a second opinion or trusted advisor.

Frankly, we could talk all day about the process of redesigning a website well. That’s kind of the reason why we exist — to help business owners like you feel equipped to leverage business technology well. As a non-profit, we offer free coaching calls to help you feel better prepared to navigate your projects.

But regardless of whether you connect with us or not, we recommend you find someone who can walk with you alongside the process. Consider employees or even friends and family with experience in tech, design, or IT work. Although they may not be experts, having their input or second opinion can make the process of starting a web redevelopment project much easier.

We hope those quick steps have helped! Have more questions? Get in touch using the form below!