Typically, the task of redesigning the company website falls to someone in the Marketing Department. If you think about it, the marketing team is the best choice, because the ‘marketing first’ approach to website redesign is the best strategy for success. The only problem is that many Marketing Managers know very little about web design. To help solve that problem, we’ve put together the Marketing Manager’s Guide to Redesigning Your Website.
#1 – Use the ‘Marketing First’ Approach
‘Marketing first’ means that, before you decide on the look or content of your site, you must answer the important questions.
- Who are the primary and secondary customers?
- What are they looking for?
- What is the path of their buyer journey?
- How can you motivate them to move forward along that path?
- What is the end goal for this website (sales, leads, etc.)
Once you’ve defined the purpose of the website and the process for achieving your goal, THEN it’s time to look at the visual design and the content.
#2 – Create a Visual Design
During the design phase, your web designer will work with you to pick colors and fonts that work with your existing brand. He may request photos or video from you that you would like to use on your website.
At Thomas Digital, we would then create a Mock-Up of your homepage design and submit it for approval. Once the overall look has been established, we could then move forward with the inner pages.
Marketing Managers with a background in graphic design may have input on the color theory or typography of the website redesign. But if not, then your web designer can help you make those selections.
Once the visual design phase has been finalized, then it’s time to work on the content.
#3 – Write Quality Content
When redesigning your website, it’s important to carefully consider the content. There are two approaches to web content, writing for the client and writing for the search engines. The best solution is to do both.
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Writing for Your Client
When you are writing for your clients, you need to use their verbiage and adopt the right tone for what you offer. It often helps to hire a content writer so that the copy flows and the points are made succinctly.
- The very first thing you need to do is define your unique value proposition. What sets you apart from your competition? This is an important message and needs to be consistently conveyed clearly to all website visitors.
- Next, you need to sell a solution rather than your services. Your text needs to identify the needs of your clients and then tell them how your products or services meet those needs.
- Create a compelling offer.
- Educate your prospects. This establishes your credibility in your industry and also helps your prospects to understand why they ‘need’ your services.
Client writing comes first, but only slightly less important is the copy written for the search engines.
Writing for Google
Whether you like it or not, you need Google to reach your clients. The problem is that Google is not a person. It is not even a machine. Google is a computer program that looks at your text and makes deductions based on certain criteria.
- You must have keywords inserted in the proper places or Google will not be able to figure out what your company offers.
- The content must be unique or it will get ignored.
- The links within your content establish relevance and give additional clues as to what you do.
Unless you plan to spend large sums of money on AdWord campaigns, redesigning your website will require keyword research and other SEO services. Hopefully, the same copywriter that you found to draft your client copy will also understand SEO and can incorporate the appropriate keywords into your text.
#4 – Don’t Forget the Mechanics
We haven’t yet mentioned the final piece of redesigning your website, because if you have chosen the right web agency then it should not require any input from you. You should not have to worry about whether the website cache is leveraged or if the all the images are compressed. Here are the things you should require of your web designer/developer.
- Encryption – Anymore, this is standard, except on very cheap websites.
- Mobile Friendly – Your website should have a mobile version (not just a small copy of your regular site)
- FAST! – Page loading speeds should be 5 sec or less in order to meet Google’s Top Performer designation.
All three things are now required by Google if you want preference in the search results. It’s true that you can rank without them if you have great content and no competition, but it’s very difficult.
#5 – Update Your Website Regularly
A web design has a lifespan of about 3-5 years. Regular updates mean that you can postpone your next redesign longer than you would without them. A redesign does not have to be a completely new website. Instead, you can give your site a facelift or repurpose it as business needs change.
Redesigning Your Website
One of the primary reasons we put together this Marketing Manager’s Guide to Your Website Redesign was to show you all the components of a good website. Redesigning your website does not need to be daunting task. Remember to focus on marketing first and then add the other components for a profitable web design.
Thomas Digital Design offers a Free Mock-Up Offer of your new web design. In just one week, you can see what a ‘marketing first’ website looks like. The best part is that you can see exactly what we offer, at no cost and with no future obligation.