Is It Time For A Facelift – Part 1
Your website is essentially acting as the face of your business. It's what many of your customers lay eyes on first, so it needs to represent you and your business in the best way possible.If it looks tired, old, and it has limited functionality, or is hard to navigate, it doesn't give the best impression. Just like a face, sometimes it needs a little cosmetic help.Sometimes, switching the colour scheme can help, much like putting on some make up. There are other times when a different approach is needed, akin to minor cosmetic procedures like lip plumping and Botox, to freshen the look and content of your website. There are also other times when a full on facelift is the way forward, and although this might feel like a drastic step, giving your website a full facelift pays dividends in the future.
We can think of the life of a website in the same terms as dog years – think about the memes you've seen in the past week. If you saw the same meme over the course of 48 hours it often feels like you first saw it weeks ago, thanks to the huge volume of content that we see and process every day. Translating this to the online world - a website that was designed and launched five years ago can feel, relative to other websites with a fresh design and updated content, 35 years old. This is especially true for website which customers use and see frequently, as the more the content is impressed onto the brain, the older it feels.
Each website refresh or rebuild needs to be taken on a case by case basis, but generally speaking, if you want to make a few significant changes it's best to approach the project as a full on rebuild. We see time and time again, website owners who want to make a couple of changes often end up completely overhauling the whole website, and sometimes even the technology and software that runs it. Once you start making a list of changes you'll naturally find more and more things that need attention; in terms of cost, it works out cheaper in the long run to do a total rebuild with a well thought out project plan, than it does to make significant changes every 6 months or so.
If your website was recently updated with a new design, layout and content, then you won't want to do another complete overhaul. In these cases, you might want to add a new page, a new feature or tweak the design or colour scheme a little. This is a bit like having minor surgical interventions such as eyebrow tattoos or lip filler. These tweaks just enhance the website you already have without being onerous to implement, and without needing a lot of testing.
A full scale rebuild requires the same amount of work and testing as a new website build from scratch, so it is a big project that requires a significant investment of time and money to complete. It is vital that you have the resource in-house to work with the design and build agency, to create a working partnership that will make the project smooth to run. Timing is also crucial, so if you have a really busy period coming up, time your website rebuild for after the rush, so it doesn't affect your ability to sell to customers.
If you are thinking of revamping your website, but you don't know whether you need to make a few changes, or a full-scale overhaul, check back for part 2 where we look at the process of a website rebuild from start to finish
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