Deciding to get a new website for your business is a big deal. A website should be an investment that serves your business well, but it’s not a quick fix to make your business profitable. When a potential client comes to me asking for a website redesign, it’s my job to figure out what’s going on in their business – and if a new website is really the next best step.
If you get a new website hoping to grow your business, but you still don’t have a solid marketing strategy in place to drive people to it, the website won’t be as effective. It’s kind of like getting a more expensive car before you learn to drive.
So, how do you know when it’s time for a website redesign, or if there’s something else in your business that you should work on first? Let’s dive in deeper, shall we?!
I’ve noticed a trend of 3 common situations among business owners who are considering a new website. Now, these aren’t all of the reasons that you might be thinking of getting a new website, but these are some that I see most often.
So, in these situations, do you really need a new website? Or is something else going on? Well, it depends on what’s causing the problem. Let me explain.
When a client comes to me with this problem, the first thing I want to know, is:
If their website is awesome, and it’s serving them well, then maybe they could just use some training on how to use their website builder. This is a great option for business owners who just want to feel more comfortable making updates to their website.
However, if their website isn’t serving their audience and their business well – maybe it’s not even finished because they’re so frustrated with the website builder – it’s probably time for a new website on a different platform.
If that’s the boat that you’re in, the first thing I want you to do is research website builders and find one that works for you and your business needs. Then, you can move forward with getting a new website.
The website builder that I personally recommend is Showit. It’s the website builder that I use, and that I recommend for service- based creative entrepreneurs and personal brands. This includes bloggers, photographers, coaches, therapists, etc.
Showit is super easy to use and you have so much creative freedom (without having to have previous design experience!). Even if I’m custom designing a website for you, I want you to have the confidence and the know-how to edit your site moving forward.
Funny enough, my mom Angela is a real-life example of a business owner who found herself in this situation. She came to me a few years ago feeling completely frustrated. She wanted to start a blog, so she purchased a WordPress theme, and hired a developer to customize it for her.
However, it just wasn’t the right fit for her. She felt completely frustrated each time she logged into WordPress to make changes to her website. Her idea for her branding had changed, and she wanted to go with a different style. But because she was so frustrated with how to edit it, she wasn’t able to go in and make the changes.
She pretty much just gave up on the website. She wasn’t updating it, blogging, or moving her business forward.
When she came to me, I recommended that we do a complete rebrand and create a whole new website on Showit. One neat thing about Showit is that it integrates with WordPress for blogging, so she could still have all of those powerful blogging tools – without the hard to edit site.
If your business has changed, and your website now feels outdated, ask yourself:
After asking yourself those questions, you might realize that your business has only changed slightly. Maybe you launched a new course or service, but a lot of other things about your business and brand are the same.
In that case, you probably don’t need a complete website redesign. You can just make some updates to your current site (add pages, change content, etc.), and you should be good to go!
But, if you find that your business has changed a whole lot, maybe:
…then it’s probably time for a complete redesign.
Janet came to me several years ago in need of a new website. Her website was outdated and hadn’t been updated in years. It had just come to the point where it didn’t reflect what she wanted to put out into the world – it was very dark and moody, and there was a whole lot of text everywhere.
She was looking for something more fresh and modern, that made potential clients feel welcome when they came to her site. In her case, I recommended a complete rebrand and website redesign. We started from scratch, and created a whole new logo, and chose colors and fonts that convey that mood she was going for.
From there, I created a whole new website design using a builder that was easier for her. Her new website was also more user-friendly for her clients, with features she needed – like being able to book appointments online.
In the website world, we call taking action on a website “converting.” Someone who visits your website converts if they take an action like contacting you, buying your product, requesting to book your services, or joining your email list.
We want people to take action because this gets us one step closer to becoming part of our community, and eventually, working with us.
This type of situation can get tricky, because in some cases, you might need a new website. Other times, your content marketing strategy might need tweaking, or your SEO might need to be improved.
The first thing that I’m going to ask when someone says they aren’t getting enough traffic is:
What are you doing to drive people to your site?
That might seem like kind of a weird question, because we often think “I have a website. I’m on the internet. People are going to find me.”
However, with website design, the phrase “if you build it, they will come” doesn’t apply (unfortunately…I wish it did!). You have to be proactive about driving people to your website.
When you hear about people who make a ton of sales or book lots of clients after launching a new site, chances are that they already had a solid marketing strategy in place before hand. They already knew how to drive people to a website, so once they got better website, they had even better results.
If you design a better website, but you don’t already have that marketing strategy in place, it won’t help you as much. Even though that nice website is there, people still aren’t being guided to visit it.
When it comes to driving traffic to your website, there are lots of things you can do. Here are a few common options:
The key is to be doing something to invite people to your website. Learning to do this well does take time – it’s something that I’m still learning in my own business! If this is something that you’re struggling with, know that you’re not alone.
What should you do if your website has already been optimized for SEO, and you’re already doing content marketing, but you’re still not getting a lot of traffic?
I know one mistake that I made early on in my business was writing blog posts on topics that weren’t very popular. No one was searching for those topics, so no one was going to find them.
How to fix this:
If you’re driving traffic to your site, but you’re not seeing growth, they’re might be a problem with your marketing strategy (like we talked about in solution #2 above).
But if people are coming, but not taking action or “bouncing” (leaving right away), let’s look at both your content and your website design.
When you have a high bounce rate, it could be an indication that:
You want to put out content that attracts your ideal client to your site, and meets their needs. You also want an on-brand site that appeals to your audience, is user friendly, and makes what your business is all about clear.
Depending on what’s causing people to leave, there may be some simple changes that you can make to improve your site. Or, it might be time for a complete redesign.
In a nutshell, you want your website to:
As you can see, there are times when it’s best to just get a whole new website. Other times, it might not be your website that’s causing the problem.
It really depends on your business’ unique situation. Your website design, marketing strategy, and content marketing will all have an impact on the results that you see with your website.
If you’re considering a website redesign, start by taking an honest look at your business to see what’s working and what’s not.
for fellow Designers
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