Start by reviewing your current website and related assets!
A website redesign isn’t that complicated when you work with the right company. Building a website can be systemized, where it’s easy to list out all of the different components and pieces that you need, and then deal with them one by one.
Here’s a list of everything you need to start your website design project, separated into these 4 categories:
Website Review Categories
Take a look at the category items and note how easy it is to assess the status of each one; Check off an item if you have it or add it to an action list if it needs follow up.
This is the fun one! For designers anyway 🙂 Your website branding step is often overlooked or procrastinated on by non creatives. It has to do with your Visual Depiction of your company’s identity and image, online.
And it’s not just images and colours, as it actually starts with the foundation of your website, which is: Your Business Name and your Domain Name. When you are approaching the website redesign process, it’s good to take a look at your Business Name and Domain Name (and your email addresses) to ensure they are all still in alignment and updated accordingly. Note: Changing your domain name is a complication, but totally worth the effort. We’ve done this many times and it’s possible to do without losing your SEO rankings.
Next up, take a look at your Business Logo, Colours, Fonts and your “Look & Feel.” Are they still accurate and relevant? There’s no point putting lipstick on a pig (ummm… did I get that phrase from the latest series I’m watching on Netflix?). Another good question is: Do you know where your logo design files are?
The 3rd thing to take a look at within your current Website Branding is all of the photos, stock photos, images, graphics, icons, etc. Usually this is mostly overhauled during a website design. Do you like any of the photos and graphics you currently use for your branding image? It’s time to get these organized in a folder and see what you have and what you want to swap out. Also – do you need to schedule a new photoshoot for you, your staff, your company or office space? Ideally, you need to do this before you start on the website!
Next up is the most complicated one. Taking a look at your website content and deciding:
Which areas of your current website are neglected? For example, is the information on your contact page accurate? Are your team members all still working for you? If you have a blog or a job board, are you keeping these important sections updated? Is the copyright year in your footer current?
Companies that don’t have a person specifically assigned to the website, need to assign someone and add daily, weekly, monthly and yearly website tasks.
A website redesign is the perfect time to review your website navigation, menus and structure.
- Are things in the correct order?
- Have you mapped out your website visitor’s journey and experience? A simple example is: Visitor lands on our home page, goes to our About page, and wants to Contact us. If this is your ideal customer’s journey, does your website facilitate it? Or hinder it?
- Do tired old traditional menu item names need to be refreshed? For example, switching out “Services” for “What We Do” or “About Us” to “Work With Us” – that kind of thing.
If things are working, you may not need to make drastic changes to your website navigation and structure. But at least play around with it a little to see if the creative process turns up something much better.
Improvements are good!
There’s a whole bunch of techy stuff that you don’t need to worry about, but you do need to know what the logins are. This includes knowing where your domain name is hosted (and when it expires), who your web host is, how your SSL Certificate is set up, how your email is hosted and managed.
Website specific logins you need are:
- WordPress Admin
- CPanel (or Site Tools)
Your new web designer needs to assess your web hosting package and ensure it’s at the right level for your new website. If your current web host sucks, sometimes all we can do is recommend moving your web hosting. Paying for good web hosting is worth every penny, instead of fighting with your website when the problem is really the shared server.
And finally, you need to review your current web designer, if you have them, and decide if you want to hire them again for your new website or try someone new.
You can ask questions like:
Ultimately, you need to scope out your new development into a Request for Quote (RFP), which can be formal or informal, depending on your needs, style and size of project.
Creating your RFP may also involve doing some online research, calling up web designers and having conversations, and taking a look at competitor and industry websites. These steps will help you get ideas to develop your Website Wish List.
And that's a Wrap!
This may be a Big Article, with lots of information, but this task isn’t complicated or a huge burden. In fact, we created a Website Redesign Checklist just for you that amazingly all fits on 1 page. Grab it below!