Often during the months of January and February, I receive many inquiries and requests for blog and website redesigns. It seems the New Year brings with it a desire for change and what better place to start than your home on the web? However, before you decide on a redesign, there are some things you should consider:
1. Begin with the end in mind.
What is the purpose of this redesign? What do you want your end result to be? A more aesthetically pleasing site? More readers? Draw advertisers? Or do you want to make some improvements in the design flow that will eventually convert visitors to new subscribers?
2. Write it down.
You are 10 times more likely to achieve a goal when you write it down. Do you have a well thought-out strategy? Have you researched others in your niche to see what their sites look like so that you can ensure that yours looks better? Have you asked your readers (a poll) what features they’d like to see on your site? Have you thought about what you like about your current site and how you can expand on those features?
3. Be consistent with your mission statement.
Your goals should reflect your personal mission in life – otherwise, the conflict you’ll cause will keep you from achieving your goal.
4. Set a timeline for when you’d like to see the changes implemented.
Keep in mind that most small web and blog designers are booked 6-8 weeks out and don’t be unrealistic in your timeline. Everyone wants their site yesterday – this is nothing new to us.
5. Plan thoroughly.
Details, details, details. Sign up for Evernote.com and start a file called “Site redesign”. Store your thoughts and ideas for the redesign there. Grab screen clippings, articles, notes, etc. and store them in one central place to show your designer.
The more information you have ready, the faster the actual design process will go. Communicate with your designer about specifics – never assume they “get you” just because they seem to speak your language. Images and inspiration websites will go a long way toward helping your designer give you what you want. Be open to receiving new ideas from your web designer – often something has been done to death and he or she wants to save you from making that same mistake.
The best advice anyone ever gave me when it came to setting goals was the following:
Get a goal, get a plan, and get started.
Encouraging you to do the same in this new year – looking forward to partnering with you in success!