The ultimate guide to planning your new website. [Week one]

Are you happy with your site? Do you get lots of work through it? Does it reflect your brand and make you proud? Or is it a bit of a damp squib?

Did you know that according to a recent study by Stanford University ‘75% of people judge a business by its website’ – that’s three quarters of your potential business that you could lose if your website isn’t up to scratch.

Most businesses never fully realise the power of their own website, and the negative impact of it not being fit for purpose. If it’s lacking in interesting content, if it isn’t mobile friendly (responsive), or if it just has a bad design or user experience, then it’s time to work up a website overhaul project plan.

This takes work, we understand that. And a lot of SMEs don’t have the time or resources to have someone work on this all the time. So we’re trying to make it easier for you. The best websites out there make it easy to navigate whilst giving users a sense of brand authority. If you can do that, whilst creating engaging content then your website can really work for your business and generate you the leads and new business you want and deserve.

Our rule of thumb here is if your website is over two years old, it probably needs a facelift. If it’s over four years old, you absolutely need to think about a full redesign and rebuild. The reason being is that we’re playing by Google’s ever changing rules, and a site coded four years ago probably won’t represent best practice in the eyes of Google now, so you’ll notice your search rankings slip.

The reason for this article is that we’ve found a lot of our potential clients come quite underprepared, and they just don’t understand what is required from them to get the new website up and running. So this handy guide split over the next couple of months should give you a solid starting point, by using our ten step guide, you should be able to get yourself totally ready for you new website.

So, without further delay – here are the subjects we’ll cover on an article by article basis:

  • Using your existing data (Performance Metrics)
  • Work SMART – using a SMART strategy to analyse data
  • Doing a content audit – make sure your current content works for you
  • Does your current brand give out the right message?
  • Site Mapping – ensuring your pages are laid out for the best engagement
  • Mapping for Visitors – make sure the user journey and content excites customers
  • User Journey 101 – ensure the user journey is coherent
  • Back to content – make sure the new content is on point
  • Measure performance – work out what defines success and how we can measure it
  • What’s next? Find out how the redesign will affect your business

We’ll be back in the next week or so and we’ll be covering the first couple of points. Good luck with your new project.