Small businesses often spend a lot of time and money redesigning their website only to be frustrated to find that web traffic does not increase and they do not get new customers. In fact many are alarmed to discover that web traffic actually goes DOWN after their website has been redesigned and their ranking on web searches dramatically DECREASES. Many businesses discover that their fancy new flash intro to their website does not increase conversions and the new logo does not seem to attract new customers. A big reason for the disappointing results can be found in the reasons why a business determines to redesign their website in the first place. Making an ugly website pretty does not automatically make the website more effective. The first question you need to ask is why do you want to redesign your website?
Wrong Reasons for a Website Redesign
- We have to have a new look and feel.
- It’s been 12 months since our last redesign.
- The boss wants to do it.
- The old site is ugly.
- The site looks too static, we want moving graphics and flash to attract people.
Right Reasons for a Website Redesign
- We want to get found by more prospects.
- We want to convert more prospects into leads and eventually customers.
- We want to improve our branding. (This is only appropriate if oriented around one of the previous reasons.)
Most people are soon disenchanted with their new website redesign.
- The excitement you 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.
- Links to your website will be broken and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) of your old site may be lost causing you to not show up on search results.
- Search engines do not “see” beautiful sites they only “see” content
- No one will notice how beautiful or fancy your site is if they can’t find it.
Misguided reasons for redesigning your website are driven by the thought that the freshness and “wow factor” of a new website will increase excitement over your brand. The main motivations behind website renovations should be to improve the performance of your website. A beautiful website, although intriguing and aesthetically pleasing, is secondary to a functional traffic and lead generating website.
For more information about redesigning your website download our free e-book: Website Redesign for Small Businesses and Sole Proprietors: 7 easy steps to make your website more effective.
Photo Credit: The Library of Congress