Some people believe that a website must be the company’s best vendor. How does that sound?
It makes sense: a business’s website has to know and say everything about your brand and must be able to promote all of your products, services, and prices. Also, it must attract potential customers and answer all of the questions related to the business.
If you go on with this analogy, it also makes sense that just as you must invest in training yearly for your vendors and employees, your website needs the same treatment, too; but with updates and renewals: a website redesign.
Your website needs periodic evaluations for its performance, and changes must be applied accordingly to comply with its work with optimal results: just as a good employee.
When you evaluate your website, you can identify specific problems that may indicate that you need a website redesign. Some of these signals may be:
Down below, we try to explain what are some of the reasons to redesign your website, how often you should do it, how much does it cost, and how to write a redesign request for proposal (RFP).
Reasons for a website redesign can vary subject to your company’s specific marketing goals. Common motives for a website redesign are:
1. You want a look makeover.
Every website must have a consistent image within all of its pages or sections. Users may be confused if they land on your home page and then go to another page that looks completely different. They could even think they are on another website!
If your website has grown substantially in the last few years, it’s probably time to revisit and implement new brand guides for your brand for your website so that everything is coherent images.
This step may include deciding on color palettes, font types, and hierarchies, button styles, iconography, graphics, etc.
2. You want to increase traffic.
Even if your website’s design is on point, half of the work is missing if you have low traffic numbers. To boost your website’s traffic, you need to optimize it for searches.
A practical method for this is adding a blog section as a part of your content strategy. Websites with blog sections have 434% more chance of higher ranking on Google searches (or other search engines).
When developing a blog strategy, you may need to do keyword research. This study will help you discover which words or phrases people are using on Google inquiries and then use them in titles, contents, meta descriptions, and URLs.
3. You want to generate more purchases.
If you already have good traffic numbers, but you want to transform those visitors into clients, you will need to design your website with a clear conversion strategy.
This step will require that the website expresses perfectly who you are, what you do, and what is your expected audience. Then you will have to convince visitors to take the step and be your customers.
5. You want to optimize your website’s mobile version.
Searches from mobile devices equate to more than 58% of the organic visits from search engines. Due to this popularity, search engines have built their experiences around mobile interfaces.
When you look up something on Google with your smartphone, results will show first websites that are mobile-friendly. This means that you must optimize your website for mobiles and desktops equally.
The answer to this question is: it depends on various factors, the main one being that you must first acknowledge that a redesign process is a solution to a problem (or several) that your website faces.
Always resume your reasons to redesign: if you have any problem or concrete marketing or functionality goal that you want to address, it may be a good time.
Nevertheless, the average website has a limited “shelf” life, in which it looks new, functional, and convenient for users, just as the best by date on some grocery items. For most websites, this shelf life can fluctuate between 18 months and two years and a half.
These are not static rules. Many sites may not need a complete redesign within this period. In contrast, others may need more frequent updates due to business goals or market demand.
While age is just a number, if you’re looking for a quick answer, some experts claim that websites should be redesigned or updated as frequently as most of us change mobile devices (each 2.5 to 3 years).
We cannot stop stressing out the importance of this step. If you don’t know where you are heading, it would be tough to focus your renewal efforts.
Many owners believe that they just want their website to look prettier or improved, but their ultimate goal is to generate more traffic, for instance. So that would be the real goal for the redesign. If you have clear targets, designers will comply accordingly.
It is crucial to understand your current website, how it works, its contents, how many pages or sections it includes, etc. This evaluation is useful for defining what you want to leave the same, changing or adding.
This step is related to #1. If you want to redesign your website, it is vital to know who you are talking to. You must identify target audiences and design around their interests, needs, and preferences.
Do your homework: check out what other similar businesses are doing on their websites, or just study other websites you like or look up to.
Examples or inspirations are a great way to clearly express what you want to expect from your redesign and marketing team.
There are plenty of tools, platforms, and management software that help you build a website and manage it. Even if you have professional allies for these choices, you should familiarize yourself with some of the related words of website design to communicate better with your team.
Some of the terms you may want to understand a little bit are:
There are multiple apps online that help you create a navigation map or tree for your website. But you certainly don’t need them: you can also use a whiteboard to draw it. Or even use some post-its on a wall.
Either way, this step is crucial to think about your current website and the changes you are about to deploy with your redesign. It will be useful for you and all the team because it allows you to visualize how users find information on the website.
Remember: content is always before graphic website design. While the design is a crucial part of the process, you must make it around its content.
When contents are written first, the design part will allow you to express that message in the best way possible.
If you’re using the same photos on your website since 2008, maybe it’s time to take new ones, may it be for your products or locations.
Also, make sure to make your website responsive: functional for various devices and screen sizes.
Redesign fees depend on multiple factors, but the most essential is who will do the update?
Make sure to ask yourself if you have the required skills and expertise to do this redesign. If you don’t have them, maybe you have to consider if you can afford that amount of time and energy to learn about website design skills and tools.
On average, a website redesign by yourself will cost between nothing up to USD 300.
When working with a freelance designer for your redesign, you may be spending between $500 and USD 5.000. It depends on their fees per hour and how much intervention is needed.
Hiring an agency can cost you between $3.000 and USD 100.000.
Remember that redesign costs may also vary for different types of websites, depending on their size (amount of pages or sections) or if they include e-commerce functionalities. For example:
E-commerce website (100 to 1.000 items): between $5.000 and USD 55.000.
An RFP (request for proposal) is a document that notifies an agency or freelancer that there’s an available project for them, in this case, a website redesign: it describes the project, its goals, and budget limits.
Remember, an RFP is not used to ask for a price from the agency or designer. This chore you must do before writing the document.
Overall, RPPs are used to get agencies and clients on the same page regarding their capacities and compatibilities.
If you’re wondering what an RFP for a website redesign must include, here’s a possible list of contents:
And now, here are some website design companies that work globally and have been recognized for their outstanding labour. Most of them also offer services like branding, digital strategies and user experience.
You may notice that some of these agencies have clients like Facebook or Google, but don’t stress out: they also offer their services to small businesses, startups mostly (just don’t expect low prices).