Redesigning your website can be a smart move, especially if it’s outdated and lacks user-friendly features. The trouble is that redesigns get complicated quickly because there are many people giving feedback. The SEO team wants to keep your rankings intact. The development team wants to launch a mobile site. The design team is pushing for a responsive layout. Everyone’s suggestions matter, but there’s one area that is often overlooked and shouldn’t be: content.
Your content is an important part of your online presence, and you should keep this in mind as you launch a redesign. Here are good questions to consider early on.
What Content Do You Currently Have?
You may not know exactly what’s published on your site, especially if it’s old or large. The fact is that much of your content can probably be repurposed, so you don’t want to scrap everything and have to start over from scratch (unless it’s truly terrible). Otherwise, take inventory of what information you have and what you can use so that you’re not duplicating work or wasting time and money.
Is Information Lacking?
Once you know what content you have, identify potential holes. For instance, if you sell computer software but there’s no information on your site about how to install it (and customers frequently ask about it), adding a how-to download section will be helpful. Looking at internal search logs also gives insight as to what customers are searching for in their own words.
What Content Offers Value?
During a redesign, you’ll add new pages, update old ones and kill off those that offer no value. To know which pages drive revenue, run an analytics report and identify low traffic/high volume pages and address them. These pages should result in high revenue but are missing something. Leave high traffic/high volume pages alone because they are working.
Are Calls to Action Effective?
Calls to action help you understand how customers are navigating your site. Use In-Page Analytics to get a visual assessment of how this interaction is taking place. The evaluation will tell you how many clicks are taking place and where, as well as which calls to action are working.
Will the New Site Support the Content?
A new site means new architecture, so it’s possible that the content may not be supported and a new funneling process is needed. In addition to structural components, also make sure that the content fits your audience and the mission you’re trying to accomplish. Brands sometimes change throughout the years, and they forget to modify their content to appeal to their new audience.
By paying attention to your content prior to the site redesign, you can have your content in place to make things go smoothly and improve the end result.
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