From The Blog

Planning Your New Web Design Project or Redesign

Aug 24, 2016

Planning is essential for a successful website design or redesign. Before jumping straight into a web project, it’s important to create a plan to delegate responsibilities, create branding guidelines, gather useful knowledge to help streamline your team’s work, and determine what content you want your customers to see when they visit your web page. Here are some questions to consider as you get started with your web design or redesign.

1. Who does what?

Organize your team and set your expectations so each member of the team knows what his/her responsibilities will be.

Determine who will be your point of contact when reporting to upper management and who will be your point of contact when working with agencies.

Decide who will gather all the content you want to display in one place, who will write content and, if you have multiple teams working on separate projects, who will organize and coordinate these projects.

Choose a team member to be in charge of analytics who can predict the impact of your web content decisions from an SEO perspective. This team member can help you measure your current impact and compare it to the impact after your website launch so you can see if you’re meeting your goals.

You’ll need someone to be in charge of design (the look and feel of your website) and the development of the website itself (the technical functionality). This might be someone on your team or an agency who can build your website and provide a design based on your needs and your vision for the project.

Decide who is going to lead the QA for the website to help you meet your deadlines.

In addition to team members working on the web project itself, develop contacts who will help support your team and give your project direction. Communicate with management and stakeholders so you understand their expectations. Know who is hosting your website so they can tell you about the website speed, security, and their expectations for handling the new build.

Involve everyone on your team in building a strategy for approaching and completing your project. Everyone should understand the purpose, process, and deadlines for the project so you can coordinate as a team to meet your goals.

2. How are you branding your business?

The font types, images, and color schemes you use will communicate the character and quality of your company to potential customers. Your team should think about how they will treat images, illustrations, and icons to create a consistent look and feel across your website. Determine the voice and tone you want to see in the written content. Consistency is the key to branding, so it’s essential to set clear expectations about each aspect of the project so everyone in your team will be on the same page.

3. What does your team need to know?

Make sure your team knows your target audience and develop a strategy for reaching that audience. Your team should be thinking about what kind of content will speak to the target audience so they can tailor their approach in a coordinated effort.

Gather essential information, such as where to find login credentials for WordPress, third-party tools, and any other tools, software, or site management credentials your team might need.

Determine naming conventions for assets and folders, ensuring that everything is organized and easy to find.

Knowing where your company has been and where it’s headed will help you determine what should stay and what should go during a redesign. For example, stakeholders may prefer a certain type of content or color scheme that they want you to carry over.

Figure out what kind of functionality you need to meet your needs for the site. If you’re doing a redesign, determine what functionality you want to include from the old design as you build the new one. Find out if there are integrations that need to migrate and what new integrations you need to create. Think about whether or not you will integrate with a CRM, how you will set up a payment gateway, and what pages of the site need to be password protected. Decide if this will be handled by a team member or an agency.

Think about where you will host the new website and determine if your site will need a single SSL, multi-domain SSL, or a wildcard SSL and what features you may need in case of a DDOS attack or other potential problems.

4. What content will your customers see?

Your home is your first impression with potential customers. Interesting, engaging content that appeals to your target audience will make the difference in converting users to take action. Think about what kinds of content will represent your business and speak to your target audience. Consider if and how your website will make use of videos, images, copy, data sheets, case studies, use cases, white paper, illustrations, and quotations.

Creating a plan to address these considerations will set your team up for success in the digital marketing landscape.

If you’re looking to refresh your website or you’re ready to launch your first web project and you’ve been waiting for someone who can help you build a beautiful website with the functionality you want, the experts at Mockingbird Creative can help your team achieve its web design goals. Call 479.802.4954 or email us to get started today.