You need your new website to bring money in. But how can you be sure that the investment will be worth it? It can be hard to convince your company that a redesign is worth it.
If you're hiring a team of design professionals, you'll have to put money into the redesign. If you're doing your redesign in-house, you're asking your marketing and graphic design team to put a lot of time and resources into the project.
Good news: it's more than possible to improve your bottom line with a new site design.
The key is to design your new site with the goal of increasing sales in mind.
A Website Redesign With Your Bottom Line In Mind
To build a website that brings in leads and sales a breeze, focus on these three important aspects of design.
Don't focus on making a pretty website just for the sake of having a good-looking homepage.
Looking to grow your bottom line? Instead, focus on simplicity.
A professional site design is simple and clean, which makes your website look more credible. Credibility makes it easier for customers to trust you and feel comfortable buying from you.
You'll find that approaching your website redesign this way results in a pretty website anyways. There's beauty in simplicity.
It's all very Zen.
Want a professional, clean aesthetic? Try this:
- Clear out the clutter: Having a website that's free of clutter makes your design look more professional. Having too many links, obnoxious pop-ups, graphics, or needless apps damages your credibility.
- Use white space wisely: If you don't have any white space, your content will look like a great wall of text. But too much white space makes the page look needlessly long. Find a balance.
- Use just two or three colors: A great website design has its roots in psychology. Your designer should take into account what colors have what effect on your viewer. Do you want to use a tranquil blue like Facebook, or an energizing green like Quicksprout? You don't need to use too many colors on your site, either. Stick with 2 or 3 colors that convey your brand message best.
- Pick the right font: Pick a large font that isn't too stylized. You don't want to make it hard for your viewers to read your content.
You want to make the sales experience comfortable for your customers. If your customers don't trust you enough to give you their credit card, you won't be making much money.
Your website should be functional above anything else. Make it as easy as possible for people to spend money on your site.
A simple, professional design helps make your website more usable. How?
Ever heard of choice paralysis? Choice paralysis is the theory that, when faced with too many options, customers will simply not choose. A simple site design helps you avoid this. You don't want your customers to open your site and be faced with 40 different links and no clear direction. That's overwhelming, and may scare them off.
So, how do you make your site more usable? Try this:
- Consistent, clear navigation: your website should be easy to navigate. You want your customer to be able to find the information they need and make a purchase quickly. Keep your navigation tabs in the same place on every page, and make sure your navigation structure is logical.
- Allow product comparison: Evidence shows that allowing users to compare products makes your website easier to use. Think of it this way: if you're deciding between two products, would you want to flip back and forth between multiple windows? Or would you prefer to compare those products side-by-side?
Traditional advertising has been replaced by content marketing. This modern marketing technique is bringing businesses higher returns at lower costs than old-school marketing methods.
- Content boosts website traffic, and maintains it: Using content like blog posts to establish yourself as a credible source of information will keep readers coming back.
- Improves search rankings: Search Engine Optimization is an important part of a good content strategy. This will help your site climb up through Google's rankings, helping you market your product to a wider audience.
- Converts readers to leads: A strategically placed call-to-action will encourage readers to take the next step towards becoming buyers.
If you're redesigning your website, make sure you incorporate a content marketing plan into that redesign.
How do you know your website redesign is good for your bottom line?
A profitable site is a site that the buyers love. If customers don't like your website, or have a hard time using it, they'll go somewhere else.
Here's a few tips to help you make sure your customers love your design:
Get customer feedback.
It's important to get feedback from potential and current customers. You can send out surveys, or use a tool like user testing to invite your customers to share their opinions with you.
After all, the customer's opinion is the most important. If they find your website hard to navigate, or if there's a feature they really wish you offered, you need to know.
Get feedback from your users to avoid design pitfalls.
Your analytics software can also give you great feedback for your redesign. Analytics data will tell you in a moment which pages your visitors view the most, which blog posts people find the most helpful, how people are navigating to your product page, etc.
When you know what works, you can focus on highlighting that, and fixing your website's ineffective elements.
Test your design thoroughly.
The importance of testing can't be stressed enough. Test continuously, throughout the redesign process and afterwards.
Start with these important tests:
- Usability testing: this tells you how usable your site is.
- A/B testing: this shows two versions of your site to similar viewers to see which works best.
- Quality testing: this looks for bugs, typos, and other errors.
Start with incremental change.
A major website redesign can have a huge impact on your viewers. That can be good or bad.
Try making incremental changes.
Redesign or introduce a few features, and get feedback. Use that feedback to inform future changes. This way, you avoid shocking people by changing everything at once.
A great website is always updating and changing, without losing the well-loved aspects your customers count on.
If you've been shying away from a redesign because investing in your site seems like a money sink, then you're viewing your website wrong.
Your website is a powerful asset for your business- it should be making you money. If it's not, then your website isn't successful and it's time for a redesign.
Guest blog by GROW.