10 Tips to Relaunch your Businesses Website – Part 1

  • December 18, 2013
For any business re-launching your website is a massive, multi-layered task.  Here are 10 Tips to help you successfully do the job right, Part 2 coming soon.

Not only do you need to make decisions about your new design and branding — a re-launch requires a whole list of different tasks to be undertaken: benchmarking, content strategy, audience research, SEO… the list goes on. As with any investment in your business, every decision hangs on the return you will get from it. The new website should have defined business goals, such as improving customer conversions or increasing your sites search engine optimisation.
It is important to realise that often your business’s flaws and weak links can be exposed when it comes time to reinvigorating your web presence.
A new web strategy should be considered at least every few years, whether this comes about because you realise your current website is not converting customers at the level you’d like or maybe you need to make changes to your business. For example an organisational restructure, a change in your services or products or a reinvigorating your brand strategy.
1. Consult with Everyone!

Talk to all the stakeholders in your business about the re-launch. Speak to colleagues across the business, shareholders, clients, industry mentors, and any other key party you can think of. Getting input is important as it can help you discover what is wrong with the current site and your strategy for the re-launch.

Ask key questions like:

  • What is missing from the current site?
  • What do you like about the current site?
  • Do you think a re-launch is a good idea?
  • Do you think the business will be better for it?

Do we need a ground up rebuild or more simple re-skin, which only impacts the overall look but leaves the back end in tact?

Getting answer to these questions early in the process, working with all the different stakeholders will give you a clear vision for the new website. It can help you define the scope, direction, budget and the most importantly your goals from the redesign.
2. Allocate a Budget

Your overall budget for the redesign will frame how you will proceed. Typically a decent amount of money is required for a website redesign. The amount you spend will depend on how big your business is and how you wish to carry out the redesign. Hosting isn’t’t free either, so even if you do everything in-house you’ll need a budget.

Do you think your in-house team has the capacity to complete such a project? They will need to be able to cope with not just creating content, but promotion, SEO, and much more besides. It is good to allocate at least three months for completion of the project.

The project status should be communicated at least once per week to high-level stakeholders in your business – especially if they are not hands-on with the redesign.

3. How well is the old site performing?

Before creating the new site, you need to track the current website’s design and content, layout, as well as audience targeting and current website analytics (visitor interaction and conversion) so you can compare with the new site and accurately measure its success after launch. Every website will have different Key Performance Indicators, they are likely to change as your business grows and will be different depending on the business function of your website. It is important to make sure you gather as much information as possible for future comparison.

Some Examples could include:

  • Leads Generated
  • Number of Backlinks to site
  • Time Spent on site
  • Organic search rankings
  • Impressions
  • Traffic

4. What is your Target Audience Persona?

The World Wide Web has been in mainstream use for over 15 years now and consumers are getting savvier and savvier by the day. Modern technology allows users to tune out of any messages they do not want to see. It is therefore crucial to craft your remodelled website around your ideal converting, engaged audience persona’s.

If you know who your audience are, this can help you decide on:

  • The tone of the copy
  • The website’s overall design/look
  • What type of content (images, copy, videos) resonates best
  • Calls to action – where they are placed, what copy to use, user path to conversion.

If you know your audience persona’s you can maintain uniformity of message and content across platforms. As well as leverage audience market data and survey results.

5. Plan to Succeed

Produce a creative brief that includes all the projects requirements – from the design and SEO to colour schemes and technical requirements. This will give everyone involved a direction of travel for the redesign. It doesn’t matter how long it is, it could be 3 pages or 30, it just important that you know where you’re headed. You can use to organise research and delegation. Before starting the project review the plan as a team, and then from there start executing your strategy.

Gareth Jones
Technical Guy at SiteZulu