The buying journey for customers in both the B2B and B2C spaces has changed radically in the last few years. In the past, consumers would visit brick-and-mortar locations to research retail products or meet face-to-face with a business to hear an introductory sales pitch for services. Today, however, a significant portion of purchase research is conducted before a potential customer comes in contact with the company directly.
The Power of Search Engines
It doesn’t take an expert to identify the source of the paradigm shift. The Internet makes so much information available to consumers that they no longer have to leave their houses to learn about a business or product. In fact, a recent survey from PwC’s Global Retail and Consumer practice found that 49 percent of consumers use a search engine as their first step in researching a purchase and that 26 percent go directly to a brand’s website. The same survey found only 14 percent visited a physical store as their first step.
Essentially, this means that three-quarters of potential buyers conducting purchase research find themselves on a company’s website at the beginning of their process (the 49 percent that use search engines will almost always have the brand’s website listed on the top page of search results). As a result, businesses must maintain well-designed, user-friendly websites that provide an excellent user experience by making it easy for customers to quickly find the information they need.
Questions to Ask Before Your Website Redesign
For businesses with out-of-date websites, a redesign may feel overwhelming. Out-of-date websites are generally cluttered, difficult to navigate (because the font colors don’t pop or clickable areas are too small) or lack search functionality. On top of that, these companies may not have the in-house expertise necessary for a project of the magnitude necessary to correct these flaws. After all, the process is lengthy and complex, and decision makers may wonder if they will see positive results when the redesign and launch are complete.
Asking questions at the beginning of any website project is a must if you want to set yourself up for success from the very beginning. Here are a few that business leaders should consider before initiating a redesign:
- What skills are we going to need to complete this project?
- Do we have those skills in-house?
- What roles should departments outside of IT and development play in the redesign?
- What features and functionality must be included based on my target audience?
- How can I ensure the new site is actually more user-friendly?
- What metrics should I use to determine how the new design is performing?
- How long will it be before the new site goes live?
Because every redesign project is different, any organization taking this project on must be able to confidently answer these questions; once they have the answers, they must evaluate whether it is feasible to complete the redesign with the resources they have in-house or if they should look for outside help.
UpTop and Your Website Redesign
Here at UpTop, when we work with clients on their website or other design and development-related projects, we help create and execute an entire digital strategy to ensure a successful outcome.
Our clients benefit from our vast experience in every aspect of the website redesign process, including:
- Research and evaluation of target markets and competitors
- Visual design
- A/B testing and usability testing
- Conversion rate optimization
- Site launch
- Post-launch Analytics and analysis
Another area of expertise we specialize in is effectively and efficiently collaborating with our clients. Our focus is always on meeting our clients’ needs, whether it is for just one step in a large process or an entire project from soup to nuts.
Engaged Clients = Great Results
Over the years, we have noticed that the projects where the clients are most engaged in the process generally get the best results. This, however, does not mean we need constant communication or huge chunks of time from project leaders—we understand these decision makers likely have a myriad of other responsibilities. As such, we work to ensure that our clients can get out of the “weeds” and take a higher-level view of projects, which also frees up more time for other tasks. What we do need from our clients to ensure success is to establish alignment on the purpose and goals of the redesign so all team members are working toward the same end.
If you know your website needs an overhaul but have been hesitant to begin the process, we would love to sit down and chat, learn about your business and begin helping you create engaging online experiences that help drive your business forward.