Firefly Digital is sharing a list of seven website redesign secrets that we have developed over the years in the blog series “Seven Website Redesign Secrets” to help you get the best possible results and to avoid disastrous mistakes in your next redesign project. Below is the first post in the series: Secret 1 – Set Reasonable Expectations.

SECRET 1 – Set Reasonable Expectations

The first post in the series, SECRET 1 – Set Reasonable Expectations will help you rethink “why” you need a website redesign. There are right and wrong reasons for a redesign, and we’ve learned that many people often spend a lot of money on a redesign project that fails to produce any results.

website redesign return on investment generate online leads convert to customersIn fact, many websites often perform worse after a redesign! Part of the problem with our expectations is that they are rooted in the idea that a website is a cost with no real measurable benefits, except counting visitors or traffic. The reality is most websites CAN produce a return on the investment.

Instead of simply measuring traffic, we need to think in terms of measuring conversions, outcomes that are rooted in visitor responses to our marketing efforts. If we believe we can generate online leads and convert visitors into customers, then our expectations change, our goals change, and we begin to see the website redesign process differently.

Re-think Before You Redesign

With the right marketing strategy and website design, most websites will generate online leads and will convert online leads into profitable customers.  Before you commit to a redesign ask yourself Am I re-designing for the the right reasons?  The answer may be an understood YES but we challenge you to really rethink your motives and reconsider your expectations and goals before you redesign.

Right Reasons for a Website Redesign

  • We want to get found by more prospects
  • We want to convert more prospects into leads and customers
  • We want to improve branding (only appropriate if driven by one of the previous reasons)

Wrong Reasons for a Website Redesign

  • We have a new corporate look-and-feel
  • It’s been 12 months since our last redesign
  • The CEO wants to do it

We don’t believe by any measure that people will stop redesigning their website for the “wrong” reasons, but we do hope a redesign will also include the “right” reasons. A website redesign project can be very costly in terms of time and the money you might pay a website developer to perform on the redesign. Be sure to expect a return on that investment!

Yes. It is possible. Today’s web is a very different place than even just two years ago. Technology and methods have matured and web users are much more savvy. Today, you should expect to generate online leads with your website. You should expect to convert online leads to customers. This should be your primary expectation!

Just in case you’re not yet convinced, lets take a look at a chart that illustrates how expectations affect you and your clients happiness with the new website.

generate online leads and convert online leads to customers

Source: Hubspot, Webinar Redesign Strategy, 2010

A website re-design can become a dangerous venture if you are not re-designing for the right reasons. Much like wardrobe that we have become accustomed to and grow out of, websites have the same out growing effect. A re-design should not be updated because you are simply tired of how it looks and feels, but to improve the performance of your website.  When planning for your re-design it is critical that you are not basing the excitement of a new website on how it will look. Misguided reasons for a website new re-design are risky and will set you and your team up for a disappointment.

Here are some reasons why:

  • The excitement you and your CEO will have from a complete renovation of your website will be short lived.
  • Once you have visited your site repeatedly, the excitement of a new website will turn into boredom.
  • Complete website renovation is even worse for users:
    • Users are accustomed to the constancy of the old website.
    • Users need time to adjust, causing them more confusion.

Up next in the “Seven Website Re-design Secrets” series, “SECRET 2- Build Your Website Around Secure Assets.” Don’t miss it!