Beauty AND Brains: 5 Things to Consider Before a Website Redesign
There’s no question that everyone loves a beautiful website. Design matters, and your website design should reflect your brand and capture your target audience. While falling in lust with a pretty site is easy to do, we consider ourselves the serious-relationship-type. A beautiful website that lacks the right content, user-experience or call-to-action is essentially beauty without brains. Taking the time to really understand what makes your audience tick, what they’re looking for and what they want leads to a mutually beneficial website for you and your target audience. So before you are overcome by the beauty, checking out your Google Analytics may elevate your website redesign from a quick fling to marriage material.
1. User Experience
When re-designing your website, it’s important to first look at what’s going wrong and what’s going right with the existing website. Analyzing the user’s behavior flow in Google Analytics may uncover areas of the website that make it difficult for users to find what they’re looking for. It will also reveal the most-viewed pages of the website. If it appears your users are navigating in circles to get to the page they’re looking for, it may be best to design the homepage in a way that clearly organizes and highlights the most important pages to users.
2. Bounce Rate
If more than 50% of users are going to your homepage and immediately leaving, we recommend re-evaluating your homepage content. Often times this happens because the homepage has little to no content at all. Building up content on your homepage is not only important for SEO benefits, but it will also entice users to click through to additional pages on your website.
A clear and simple call-to-action is necessary for all websites. Whether it’s to pick up the phone and call your company, fill out a specific form, or leave a review, every site needs to have an end goal. Call-to-actions should be tracked with Google Analytics to measure their effectiveness and modified as necessary.
4. Content and Blogging
Content is arguably the most important aspect of a website. A quick look at your Google Analytics will tell you whether or not certain pages are “working” for your audience. Pay attention to the pages with lower views and plan to rewrite the content on those pages. Another way to build content on your website is through blogging. A blog not only allows your company to be seen as a thought leader in your industry, it’s also important for SEO benefits. A stagnant site with content that never changes will be ranked lower on Google than a site that is consistently updated. What should you blog about, you ask? Think about the questions your clients asks you on a frequent basis, and blog the answers to those questions. If they’re asking you, you can bet there are others searching for it on Google.
Another item to look for in Google Analytics is the amount of mobile/tablet traffic. We recommend that all websites are built in responsive design, meaning the full website will be viewed easily regardless of screen size. Researching the amount of mobile and tablet viewers will justify why responsive design is so crucial. Considering a mobile app? You can also learn what platform users are viewing from (iOS, Android, etc), which can help determine which platform is most critical to develop your app in first.
Before opting in for that beautiful website redesign, consider the above! Not only will you have a beautiful new site, but a user-friendly one too.
Main Image Courtesy of Senate House Library