Redesigning your company’s website is a big decision, isn’t it? It’s not like you just decide one day to overhaul the site – it’s a process that is considered from multiple angles, budgeted for, worked into quarterly planning schedules…and so on. Usually, a project team is established, both internally and externally. These are all good things – vital things. Today, though, I suggest you take things one step further. Here’s how to prepare before redesigning your website. Trust us, you’ll find this information makes the entire website redesign that much more effortless.
How to Prepare before Redesigning Your Website
Establish Your Team
I’ve already touched on this a little bit. The first step to any website redesign process is to figure who’s involved. I have advice on this, too – channel Goldilocks as you consider your team. You don’t want too many people, but you don’t want too few stakeholders either. You want the size of your team to be just right. With too many involved, it’ll be hard to please every person on design, on the rendering for mobile, on the content, on the imagery – you get the idea. But, with too small of a team, you might not have enough eyes on the project to bring fresh ideas and opinions into the mix.
The sweet spot is 2-3 people, in my experience.
Peruse Other Sites
Do this early on. Why? To get an idea of the site designs that jump out at you. What do you like? What would you like to see creatively rendered on your own site? This information will be very helpful for both the kick-off meeting and the design phase. Take a look at both industry-related sites and at sites outside of your industry. You might find a great design component on a site completely unrelated to your industry.
Here’s another tip: don’t start perusing other sites after you’ve gone through the design process. It’ll be harder to focus on the design you’ve chosen if new ideas are constantly being tossed around.
Think About Content Early On
Full disclosure – I’m a little biased on this on. After all, I am a content writer. Regardless, so many times a website redesign timeline is derailed because content is not considered early-on. Content is a hefty piece of the website redesign, especially if you’re doing a complete overhaul. Even if you’re keeping all content the same, I still argue that going through your pages one by one is a good practice. You’ll know exactly what is being transferred to the new site, since you just reviewed it yourself. If you’re using the content writing services of the website redesign agency that you’re working with (in which case, you’d be working with me!), have the content meeting early in the process. It’ll keep the project on track and keep frustrations at bay.
Take New Imagery
Go on – have a photoshoot! Seriously, now is a fantastic time to overhaul the imagery at your company. Time flies, and before you know it, your imagery is 10 years old and outdated. Imagery is everything these days, so invest in it. You can scale this process up or down as much as is fitting for your business. For instance, is it necessary to do head shots this year? Or perhaps it’s more important to get video footage for the home page of the up-and-coming site. Decide which pieces really matter to you and then schedule the shoot.
Oh, and here’s more free advice – if you have a photoshoot before the design process, your designer will be able to use the new imagery in his/her comps. Seeing that imagery will help you to envision what the new home page will look like once live, with your imagery and content, right away.
Do the In-Person Meetings
I know, I know – sometimes scheduling doesn’t allow for this. Promise me, though – when it’s needed, you’ll take the time to have an in-person meeting. Ideas, questions and concerns are hashed out so much more efficiently when your internal and/or external teams can communicate face-to-face. And, if you’d like an in-person meeting, but there’s nothing scheduled…ask for one! Sometimes these meetings actually help to keep the project moving seamlessly, despite the coordination involved to get all team members together.
With the above in mind, don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions of your own! Contact us here, or give us a call at 262-361-3848.