If you are like other small businesses, you have had your website since the beginning. If your business had been around for a while, then your website could be getting a little outdated. But how do you know if it’s time for a redesign? Here’s how:
1.) Reevaluate your Target Market.
If your business has been open for awhile, then you know that things have changed. You have expanded, refocused your brand, maybe found your niche. Well, your customers may have changed too. Now is a good time to take a look at who your current customers are. Ask your “front line” employees, talk to your customers, take a “bird’s eye view” of your customer demographics and see if you can narrow down your current target market.
2.) Get a Feel For How Your Current Customers Use Your Website
Get an idea of how your clients are currently using your site (if at all). Ask your current customers:
- Where did they learned about your business?
- Did they try and find you online, if they did were they able to find your website?
- Did they find the information they were looking for?
- Is there any information that was missing on your website?
- Did they like the look and feel?
- Did they use a tablet, or smart phone?
This information will help you with Step 3.
3.) Audit Your Website
Ask at least one “front-line” employee, and one upper-level employee to sit down with a pad of paper and your website and write down anything that comes to mind. Keep in mind your target customer. Look over every singe page and image.
- Is it all up to date?
- Does the imagery reflect your current brand image?
- Is key information easy to find (your contact information, directions to your location, etc…).
- Is it obvious to your customers what you are selling?
- Does your website look good on a tablet or smart phone (don’t overlook this, even if you think your customers don’t use a smart phone or tablet to view your site. You may be surprised to discover that mobile tech is being used by demographics you wouldn’t necessarily expect. US Tablet Owner Demographics as of September 2013, Marketing Charts)
4.) Review Your Audit with a Designer
Now is the time to make a decision. How did your Audit go? If it looks like your website needs some updating, now is the time to bring in a designer. A designer will be able to help you determine if there are any other concerns, for example accessibility, search engine optimization, how your website works etc… She can also help you develop a plan to get everything up to date.
Even if you are planning on building your website yourself, a designer can help you create a plan of action.