Website Redesign: When and why you need to change the design of your website

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22 Jan
2024
27 Dec
2023
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In an era where online impressions are made in the blink of an eye, an outdated platform can be a silent business killer. Failing to modernize your website can lead to a loss of customer clicks, resulting in lower traffic and conversions. That’s why website redesign isn’t merely a passing trend but a crucial necessity and our topic of discussion today.

As technology evolves and consumer preferences shift, what worked yesterday in design might not resonate today. In that case, building a great website improvement strategy and hiring a professional team can be your go-to solution. Moving forward, we will explore the critical elements of a website redesign, revealing its impact on user engagement and your brand’s digital narrative.

What is a website redesign?

First and foremost, let’s identify what “redesign” means. Simply put, it’s a comprehensive process of revamping and improving your site to meet current web standards, user expectations, and business objectives. The redesign can include updating the site’s layout, improving navigation, optimizing for mobile devices, and incorporating new features and content. But the aim remains the same — to make the platform more user-friendly, visually appealing, and efficient.

Website redesign vs refresh: what’s the difference?

When you decide to update your website, you basically have two options — redesign or refresh. Though these terms might sound similar, they serve different purposes and involve varying degrees of change.

A website redesign is about rethinking your digital footprint from the ground up — reimagining the user experience, retooling the navigation, and often rebranding. This process can be extensive, as it aims to keep the website in line with substantial shifts in your business strategy, brand identity, or technological advancements.

On the other hand, a website refresh is less about structural changes and more about cosmetic updates. A refresh might involve the renewal of color schemes, fonts, or layout elements to make the site look more up-to-date. It’s an ideal approach when your website’s foundation is solid but needs a touch-up to keep it looking fresh and engaging.

While a redesign can be time-intensive and resource-heavy, a refresh typically requires less time and investment.

When a website might need redesigning

Eventually, the logical question arises — when is the right time to redesign a website? Many factors might impact the decision — from outdated visuals to evolving market trends and user expectations, and finding the right moment for this significant change is your first step.

Research is the first thing to determine if it’s time to redesign

Rebranding or UI improvement

When your brand’s visual identity starts feeling outdated, or your website navigation becomes a challenge, it’s a sign to consider a redesign. Such a process involves an analysis of what your brand stands for now as opposed to when it was first launched. It’s not just slapping on a new logo but creating an online platform that shows who you are.

Refining the user interface of your website goes hand-in-hand with this process. A well-designed UI can make a difference in how customers perceive and interact with your site. When users are guided through your platform, they want their journey to be smooth and enjoyable, right? A good UI does just that — it gets rid of any confusing parts and makes everything clear and easy.

UX Improvement

You know how sometimes you visit a website, and everything just flows? You find what you need, everything makes sense, and it’s just... nice? That’s what we aim for with UX improvements. It represents how your visitors feel when browsing your site, and you should make everyone have a great time and move around easily.

Think about it — if customers get lost on your site or can’t find what they’re looking for, they’ll probably leave and not come back. So, when you notice high bounce rates or maybe feedback that your site’s tricky to use, that’s your cue — it might be time to spruce up the UX.

Improving adaptive design

With a significant portion of web traffic coming from different devices like smartphones and tablets, having an adaptive website design is no longer just an option — it’s a necessity. This trend underscores the urgency for any resource to prioritize its mobile version, and if your site hasn’t embraced such an approach, now is the time to make that pivotal shift.

The absence of an adaptive design can leave a large percentage of your audience unsatisfied. To prevent this, provide users with intuitive navigation, quick loading times, and a layout that’s easy on the eyes. Make sure that whether someone’s checking out your site from a tiny phone or a huge desktop monitor, they’re getting the best possible experience.

Improving SEO and website performance

High-performing, SEO-optimized websites don’t just happen by chance — they result from strategic design and technical finesse. Suppose your site lags in search rankings or loads slower than a snail. In that case, it’s a clear sign that a redesign focused on SEO and performance is due.

Slow loading times, broken links, or unresponsive design can frustrate users, increase bounce rates, and negatively impact your online reputation. Improving these aspects means exploring the backend of your site, optimizing code, and ensuring your hosting solution is up to the task.

Launching a new product/service or adding additional features

When you decide to introduce something new or expand existing services, your platform should reflect these changes in content, functionality, and design. This could mean creating special sections, highlighting features, or even designing a new look around your latest launch.

Imagine your website as a storefront. Adding a product or service is like introducing a new showcase item in your shop window — you want it to be visible, attractive, and engaging. This may require rethinking your website’s layout to ensure the offerings are prominently displayed and easily accessible.

Improving website conversions

You’ve probably experienced situations when some visitors to your website don’t end up taking action, like making a purchase or signing up for your newsletter. This often points to confusing navigation, unclear CTAs, or a checkout process that’s more complicated than it should be.

In that case, tweak your calls to action so they’re more persuasive, simplify forms to make them less hassle, or rearrange content so the most important stuff stands out. The goal is to create a website that communicates with your audience and gently nudges them toward the action you want them to take.

Your website may look good, but if it’s not effectively guiding visitors toward making a decision, it’s not fulfilling its potential.

Things to consider before you start redesigning your website

The website redesign journey begins with a critical step: analyzing your current site’s performance. This means taking a close look at your analytics to see how visitors interact with the platform. They click, make purchases, leave the site immediately after coming in, or simply scroll — these are all important indicators, highlighting what aspects are performing well and which areas need improvement.

Refining the user interface of your website goes hand-in-hand with this process. A well-designed UI can make a difference in how customers perceive and interact with your site. When users are guided through your platform, they want their journey to be smooth and enjoyable, right? A good UI does just that — it gets rid of any confusing parts and makes everything clear and easy.

#1 Pay close attention to the pages receiving the highest traffic. These are your digital hotspots, the areas of your site that engage your audience the most. Are these pages converting visitors at the expected rate? If not, understanding why is key to your website relaunch strategy. Similarly, identify the pages with lower traffic or poor conversion rates. These underperforming areas offer valuable insights into potential issues with content, layout, navigation, or call-to-action clarity.

#2 Consider the customer journey on your site. Find out which pages users visit before converting or dropping off. This journey mapping can reveal a lot about visitor behavior and preferences. Here’s a little tip — highlighting the most important pages and their roles in the conversion funnel can help prioritize areas in your redesign that require the most attention.

#3 Set clear goals based on analysis. What are you aiming to improve with the redesign? Is it the overall look, the user experience, conversion rates, or perhaps all of these? Specific objectives will help you and the design team make decisions representing your business goals.

Your analytics tell a story, and now it’s time to rewrite that narrative in a way that meets your goals. With these insights in mind, let’s move on to the final part of our article — redesign steps.

How to redesign a website

Since we’ve already started discussing website redesign, it’s important to know the stages needed. In the following sections, we’ll go over these steps one by one to help you understand how to make your website better and more effective. So, let’s start.

Working on a redesign requires understanding many aspects

Analyze your “old” site and its key metrics

The first step is to take a good look at your current site and analyze it. Focus on metrics such as visitor traffic, time spent on the site, bounce and conversion rates, as these data points provide valuable insights into user behavior and engagement. This stage is important because it gives you a clue about what to keep, remove, and improve in your redesign.

Don’t just focus on the numbers, though. Try to figure out the “why” behind them. For example, if many people leave your site from the same page, ask yourself why that might happen. Maybe the page is confusing, or it just doesn’t have what your visitors are looking for.

Set redesign goals

The next part — figure out why you’re doing it. What do you really want to achieve? Maybe you’re aiming to keep people on your site longer, or you’re looking to boost sales in your online store. Whatever it is, make your goals clear and measurable to have a solid target to hit.

It’s a good idea to line up these goals with what’s most important for your business right now. Some things might need immediate attention, while others can wait a bit. In that case, set your sights on what you want to accomplish and let your redesign lead you there.

Protect your optimized and converting pages

As you progress with the website redesign, keep a close eye on the pages that are already doing great in terms of traffic and conversions. They are your digital assets, driving significant value to your business. So, when making changes, handle these pages with care to keep them performing well even after the redesign.

It might be tempting to change everything from top to bottom, but be cautious with these high-performing pages, as big changes could shake up their success. The trick is to update them slowly and smartly to keep what’s working and just tweak the style to fit your new look.

And if you have to move these pages to new web addresses, don’t forget about 301 redirects. They keep your search engine rankings intact and guarantee that people who click on old links end up in the right place on your revamped site. Doing so safeguards the SEO value these pages hold and makes sure your site’s performance doesn’t take a hit.

Determine or update your site’s target audience

One more critical aspect of website redesign is having a clear picture of who you’re designing for. Is your target audience the same as when you first built the site, or has it evolved? Maybe your business has grown or introduced new products or services. All this can shift who your ideal customer is.

Start by asking some key questions: Who are your current visitors? What do they need and expect from your site? To which demographic are you reaching out? Understanding these details can greatly affect how you approach your redesign.

If you’ve got the analytics tools, dig into that data. Look at who visits your site, what devices they use, and how they interact with your content. This info can tell you a lot about your audience’s preferences and behavior.

Determine your branding, color scheme, and fonts

Another big part of the redesign is your branding, which includes color scheme and fonts. But wait, there are some nuances. If you have already established a branding image, it may be time to update it — reshape your personality and unique flavor. In contrast, when you haven’t yet created your visual identity in the market — consider looking into it. Think about what your brand stands for and choose the identity to reflect that.

For example, a law firm might go for more conservative, subdued colors and traditional fonts, while a graphic design studio could choose bold colors and modern, artistic fonts. It’s also essential to make sure your choices are web-friendly and accessible. This means your text should be easy to read and color contrasts clear enough for everyone, including those with visual impairments.

Analyze your competitors

Moving forward, consider taking a peek at what your competitors are up to can be super insightful. This isn’t about copying what they’re doing but understanding the landscape you’re operating in. Start by making a list of your main competitors and visit their websites.

Maybe they have a really cool layout or some nifty features that make the user experience smoother. And it’s not just about the good stuff. Notice anything that bugs you or feels off? Those are lessons on what to avoid. Pay attention to their design, user interface, content structure, CTA placement, and other features.

Remember, your competitors are targeting similar customers as you. So, understanding their approach can give you some great ideas on how to appeal to your shared audience.

Analyze keywords

Let’s talk about keywords — they’re a big deal when giving your website a makeover, especially if you aim to level up SEO. Start by figuring out the words and phrases your audience is searching for. This could be anything from “handmade leather bags” to “best vegan recipes.” Once you have your list, it’s time to get those keywords into your site — in your content, headlines, and meta descriptions.

But here’s the thing: keyword analysis isn’t just a one-and-done kind of task. The way people search can change over time, and so can the words they use. Make it a point to keep tracking these changes, even after your website’s new look goes live. Staying on top of your keyword game means your website looks appealing and remains visible and easily discoverable.

Update your website layout and structure

Take a fresh look at your website’s layout and structure. You want to stay in line with the latest trends in web design but also focus on what works best for your users. Start by reevaluating your current layout. How easy is it for someone to find their way around? Can visitors quickly find what they’re looking for? You aim to make their entire visit, from start to finish, as smooth and hassle-free as possible.

Then, there’s the big picture — the overall structure of your site. This is all about how your content is set up and categorized. A well-thought-out structure makes life easier for your visitors and helps search engines better understand and rank your content.

Draw a new website interface

So, your design starts to take visual shape and it’s time to draw a new website interface down on paper — or, more likely, on screen. It’s an exciting phase where you can translate your ideas and goals into tangible design elements. First up, wireframes. They outline the basic layout, showing where everything will go, but they don’t get into the nitty-gritty of design just yet. Wireframes are great because they let you focus on getting the layout right without distractions.

Once you have the wireframes, it’s time to move on to mockups. This is where you add colors, choose fonts, and start putting in all the visual elements that match your branding. And remember, this part is all about teamwork. Getting feedback from your colleagues, stakeholders, and maybe even some early users can give you invaluable insights to make your design even better.

Start redesigning your website

Now that you’ve laid the groundwork with careful planning and design, it’s time to start redesigning your website. You’ve got two paths to choose from here: roll up your sleeves and do it yourself, or bring in a professional team.

The journey begins with coding — the construction phase of your digital building. Every section of your website, from the homepage to the contact page, gets crafted with care. This is when the layout, navigation, and all those features you dreamed about start to take shape. And if you’re working with a team, this is where the real collaboration kicks in. Designers, developers, and you — everyone’s in constant communication, making every pixel perfect and every link lead the right way.

But it’s not just about looking good. There’s a bunch of technical stuff to address properly, like SEO, load times, and mobile responsiveness. Remember, the process of redesigning a website is iterative. Be prepared for some back-and-forth as you fine-tune and adjust elements based on testing and feedback.

It’s a collaborative effort that requires patience and attention to detail, but the result — a fresh, updated website that meets your needs and appeals to your audience — is well worth it.

Tips and tricks for redesigning your website for a user-friendly experience

As a design and development agency, we can’t leave you without sharing some insider tips. We have covered a lot in this article, but there are some additional points we want you to take note of.

  • Make your design responsive and adaptable for different screen sizes, whether viewed on a desktop, a tablet, or a smartphone.
  • Provide visitors with a clear and intuitive navigation structure to find what they’re looking for without hassle.
  • Optimize your website’s structure, content, meta tags, and even image alt texts for relevant keywords.
  • Find the balance between uniqueness and usability to make a lasting impression on your visitors.
  • Consider optimizing the site for voice search to improve your site’s visibility in voice search results.
  • Conduct A/B testing to compare web page versions against each other to determine which one performs better.

It’s all about understanding and anticipating your users’ needs, making information easily accessible, and ensuring your site is up-to-date with the latest technological advancements. So, when working on your website redesign, try to use such valuable tricks to improve user experience and increase your effectiveness. Remember, a well-designed platform is a powerful tool in building trust and engaging with your audience.

Inspiring examples of website redesigns from Halo Lab

Whether developing a brand new online presence or enhancing an existing one, the Halo Lab team worked in a variety of industries with specific requirements and project scopes. Our portfolio showcases a range of website redesigns we’ve undertaken, reflecting our expertise and the diverse needs of our clients. Let’s take a look at some of them.

Happy

First on this list is Happy, a website for a company that sells clear aligners for people all over Israel. Our team worked on creating branding and design solutions for them.

The client wanted an extra-friendly website style to represent their commitment to promoting healthy teeth and, as a result, fulfilling lives. Our approach was to structure all website elements in a sticker-style layout, ranging from images to block-based tiles.

To enhance UX and assist customers in understanding their specific needs, we combined informative descriptions with vibrant illustrations. This result was designed to showcase the benefits and effectiveness of the client’s product in a fun and engaging manner.

The joyful vibe of the Happy website

Bookclub24

We also had the opportunity to work on the digital rebirth of the Bookclub24 project. This platform offers readers a unique service to register and manage their collection of books in a digitized format.

At first, we conducted a thorough analysis of similar websites, examining their strengths and weaknesses. To identify the needs, goals, and behaviors of the target audience, our team “painted” a literal portrait of the platform’s archetypical user.

The Scandinavian style works great for this project as we could mix its calm and aesthetic mood with vivid, impressive accents. Also, we designed many elements with hints, text labels, and customized icons to make it easy for all users to navigate the site. Besides, our designers divided all the different platform operations into separate flows and functions, so the main page was more organized and structured.

Clean and cohesive design with bright accents for Bookclub24

Wrangle

Now, let’s look at the Wrangle project. This platform helps companies map and automate their employees’ work, offering integration with Slack, Microsoft Teams, and other business messaging apps.

Designing the Wrangle landing page required us to create a clean and consistent product for the client’s audience. We achieved this by selecting Inter as the primary font, which embodies the values of accessibility, versatility, and minimalism, and deep purple shades of Dark Violet as the main accent color.

As a result, our team presented a landing page with animated illustrations that demonstrate how Wrangle works. We also added dynamic CTA buttons to make it easier for users to download the tool.

Dark Violet accent in Wrangle project design

The end? Not really

So, we discussed all the important aspects of planning, designing, developing, optimizing, and analyzing your website. But even knowing these rules, don’t forget to keep an eye on market trends, design techniques, and customer preferences. However, with the way our world is changing so quickly, you may have to make an effort to redesign your website or app again in a year.

Use all the advice in this article to update your website and make a strong impression on customers with an appealing first point of contact. If you need any help, contact us to discuss the project details, including pricing and timelines for development. Let’'s collaborate and create a website that not only boasts an impressive appearance but also delivers exceptional results.

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The site developed by Halo Lab projected a very premium experience, successfully delivering the client’s messaging to customers. Despite external challenges, the team’s performance was exceptional.
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