Needle Media Ltd

How to know when it’s time to redesign your website?

How do you know when it’s time to redesign your website?

Before we get started, ask yourself a quick question – how long ago did you get your current website? Was it 1 year ago? 5 years ago or More?

Chances are, if you have a website and you haven’t given it much love lately, it’s time for a redesign.

Luckily, upgrading your website isn’t as scary as you think, and in this article we discuss how to tell if it’s time to give your site a spruce up!

Common signs you may need a website redesign

If any of the following tell-tale signs you need to upgrade your website sound familiar, it might be time to consider a website upgrade!

It just doesn’t “feel” right

When you view your website it just doesn’t look good.  The colors aren’t right, the images no longer work, and the overall feel gives off an outdated or unprofessional look.  Your competitor’s websites look much more modern, clean and professional and make their businesses look better than yours, even if they’re not.

Like stepping back in time

You look at your website and it’s like stepping in a time machine to the place the internet was many years ago.  The font is too small, your site looks small on modern screens & is hard to read and it just doesn’t fit with all the new styles and advances in technology over the years.

You can’t update it yourself

Many older websites were built before content management systems like WordPress were commonplace.  They were often built in code by web developers who you have to pay every time you want even a small update, and you find this extremely frustrating.

Has a separate mobile site or doesn’t adapt to mobile devices

Does your website look like a tiny miniature version of your site on mobile screens so small that you can’t read it, and when you try zooming in you end up having to drag the screen around just to read a normal sentence?

Or maybe you have a separate mobile site that needs to be updated by your web developer seperately to your main site and looks like a series of buttons with no real design?

Your website keeps getting hacked

As technology advances, so do the skills of hackers, if you’re not constantly upgrading your site and maintaining it’s security, you’re putting your reputation and business at risk.  Older websites are much more vulnerable to attacks, resulting in costly repairs and potentially losing your site all together!

4 Steps to re-designing your website

When it comes time to redesigning your website, we’ve had a lot of experience in making the process as smooth as possible. Here are 4 steps we take, so you can learn and take the hassle out of your next website redesign.

1. Planning & Discovery

First, you need to work out what the business goals are for your site.   Next, we need to look at what elements of your current site are working well to meet that goal, what elements need to be added and what elements need to be scrapped all together.

Look at other websites you like the look and feel of.  This helps us pick fonts, colors, images and other design elements you like. If you have an existing branding or style guide, we will work within those guidelines.

Once we have all of this we sketch a rough mockup of where all the elements on your website need to go, before we start with the finer design and build details.

2. Re-Design Your Website Layout

During this phase we work with you to create a layout you’re happy with.  We like to create the designs straight onto our development server so you can actually see how the elements will move and respond on different devices, rather than just looking at an image, so you can provide feedback and we can make the updates in a live environment.

We work on the homepage design first and get that agreed upon before moving forward with the other sub pages.

Next, we mockup the unique sub pages of the site that require specific layouts and design work. We make sure to design layouts in both desktop format as well as mobile format so we know how the site will look and adapt to multiple devices.

3. Your website Content

In step 1, the planning & discovery phase of the redesign, we also work with you do update and revise the content structure of your website. This falls into two categories.

Sitemap

The sitemap is the main hierarchy of your website.  It provides a visual representation of all the pages on your site and how they link to each other.  It also outlines all the pages that will need text copy written and what images may be required.

Website Content

Once your sitemap is established, we set up folders in DropBox. There, we place all content from your existing website as secure documents.

This allows you to update easily and edit the content and provide a central repository for all content for the website. This can be done while we’re creating the designs and mockups so that once the site is built, the content is ready to go and can be added straight away.

4. Website Development in WordPress

After the design and content phases are complete, it’s time to do the final development of your site, install the required functionality, plugins and build your WordPress website.

Once the development is completed, we do thorough testing of the site to make sure that it displays properly across all browsers and mobile devices.  We then ask you to review this.   After the site meets with your final approval, it is launched live for everyone to see!