Website redesigns are always a risky proposition. There are so many things that could go wrong, and even a small mistake can have a big impact on your business. Most website redesigns happen because a company is trying to improve their online presence or because they’re trying to keep up with the competition.
That’s why it’s important to be aware of the most common web design mistakes before you start your redesign project. In this article, we will be discussing the 10 biggest web design mistakes that you should avoid during a website redesign.
Why website revamp: Implications if not done properly:
Website revamps are a common occurrence in the business world. Many businesses believe that they need to redesign their website every few years to keep up with the competition or improve their online presence. However, some redesigns can do more harm than good if they’re not done properly.
There are a few implications that can occur if a website redesign is not done properly, such as:
- Damages your credibility
A website redesign is an opportunity to improve your online presence and build trust with potential customers. Clients and customers may not take your business seriously if your website looks unprofessional or is difficult to navigate.
- Losing website traffic and decreased conversion rates
A redesign can also lower your search engine rankings if it’s not done properly as algorithms determine where your site should rank in their results pages, and a redesign can change how those algorithms view your site.
This can result in losing website traffic and decreased conversion rates if it’s not done properly. So it’s important to consider all of these factors before embarking on a redesign.
- Poor user experience
A redesign can also lead to a poor user experience, which can frustrate users and cause them to leave your site without taking action. The implications can range from losing potential customers to receiving negative reviews and press.
To avoid these problems, it’s important to have a clear plan for your redesign, including understanding your audience, knowing what you want to achieve, and having a solid strategy for executing the redesign.
- Wasting time and money
A redesign can waste time and money if it’s not done properly. This is because you’ll need to redo the redesign, which can cost you more money and take up more of your time.
Now that we’ve discussed some of the implications of a botched redesign, let us look at 10 of the biggest web design mistakes that you have to absolutely avoid during a website redesign.
10 Biggest Web Design Mistakes to avoid During a website redesign
Lack of hierarchy is one of the worst design mistakes you can make while redesigning your website. A lack of hierarchy means that there is no clear visual path for users to follow when they are on your website. This can lead to confusion and frustration, which will cause users to leave your site.
Hierarchy on a website by using visual cues such as color, size, and spacing forms an invisible guideline map of sorts that serves to subtly shift your users’ visual senses. This is crucial to forming a consistent impression on the user’s mind with regards to your brand’s credibility, authority, direction, and control. Therefore, a lack of hierarchy gives the exact opposite impression of what you want to achieve with your website.
Not auditing content
A redesign gives you a chance to do an in-depth content audit. This will help you determine what content is essential, what can be removed, and where new content needs to be added. It also helps to ensure that your content is well written and free of errors.
Skipping over content because of any reason causes a cascade of problems that range from losing potential customers, to having an incomplete brand story, to looking unprofessional. Content mishaps during a redesign include:
- Not having a content strategy leads to not knowing what content to include on the website, not having a plan for how to maintain or update the website after it goes live, or even relying on old, outdated, or irrelevant content.
- Not doing a content audit causes you to miss out on opportunities to update or improve your content, results in using content that is no longer accurate or representative of your brand, and can even leave you with gaps in your content that need to be filled.
- Not mapping content to the customer journey means that you could be leaving out key information that would help guide users through your website , and not having a clear understanding of what content is most important to your audience can result in you missing out on key opportunities to engage with them.
- Not having enough content can lead to a number of problems, such as a high bounce rate, low conversion rate, and difficulty ranking in search engines. In order to have a successful website, it’s important to ensure that you have a good mix of different types of content that appeals to your target audience.
Not prioritizing accessibility
In today’s day and age, skipping over accessibility is like a cardinal sin. In order to reach the widest possible audience, your website needs to be accessible to everyone—including people with disabilities. Primary errors regarding accessibility include:
- Not using alt text for images: Alt text is used to describe an image for those who are unable to see it. This is critical for both SEO purposes and accessibility.
- Audio recognition: Audio recognition is a form of assistive technology that can help people with disabilities access your content. If your site is not designed to be audio-recognition friendly, you could be excluding a significant number of potential users.
- Visual focus indicators: Focus indicators are important for people who use screen readers or other assistive technologies to navigate the web. If your site does not have clear focus indicators, like visible outlines around links and form fields, you could be making it difficult for these users to understand where they are on your site and what they can do.
- Inappropriate use of color: Some colors are more difficult to see than others, especially for people with colorblindness. If you are using color to convey important information on your site, like links or form fields, you could be excluding users who cannot see those colors. Color contrast is important for those with vision impairments, as well as for people who are trying to read your content on a mobile device with a small screen.
- Lack of keyboard accessibility: Keyboard accessibility is important for people who cannot use a mouse or other pointing device. If your site is not designed to be used with a keyboard, you could be excluding these users.
Not ensuring proper URLs and preserving page rankings
Ensuring proper URLs for your pages is important for two reasons. First, it helps users who are trying to bookmark or share your content. Second, it helps preserve your page rankings in search engines, which can drive traffic to your site.
If you’re not careful, during website redesigns, you can inadvertently introduce URL problems that can cause your pages to be inaccessible or lose their ranking in search engines.
To avoid these issues, make sure you redirect old URLs to new ones, and use 301 redirects when possible. Also, don’t change the URL of a page unless absolutely necessary, as this can result in de-indexing and a loss of traffic. When redesigning your website, it’s important to be aware of the potential effects on your SEO and traffic. If you must change a URL, make sure to use a 301 redirect to point the old address to the new one. This will help preserve your page ranking and ensure that users can still access your content.
Losing brand identity in pursuit of customization
Too much customization can make your site look like every other site out there. This can make it harder for users to remember your site, and it can also make it harder for search engines to properly index your content. Brand identity is crucial in a website redesign because it helps users keep in touch with why they love your site in the first place. If you change too many things too soon, people loyal to your brand may get confused and go elsewhere.
This can be seen as a good thing or bad thing depending on how you look at it. If you have the time and resources, why not make your site as unique as possible? However, if you’re worried about losing visitors, it might be best to stick to a more traditional design.
Some web designers believe that having too much customization can actually hurt your website. Too much of anything can be overwhelming, and users may not know where to look first. Stick to the basics and make sure everything is easy to find. Simplicity is common to both web design and branding because it allows users to focus on what’s important.
Migration not done properly
If you’re planning on migrating your website to a new hosting provider, it’s important to do it correctly. Incorrectly migrating your website can result in serious data loss and downtime. During a website redesign, its quite common to have migration issues including:
- Losing website data: If you’re not careful, you can easily lose important website data during a migration. Make sure to backup your website data before beginning a migration.
- Downtime: If the migration is not done properly, your website could be down for an extended period of time. This can result in lost visitors and customers.
- Incorrect redirects: If you don’t set up redirects properly, visitors to your old website will be redirected to your new website’s home page instead of the corresponding page on the new website. This can be very confusing for visitors and result in lost traffic. To avoid these issues, it’s important to plan and test your migration before going live.
- Email not working properly: If you use email with your website, it’s important to make sure that it continues to work after the migration. Otherwise, you could lose important communications with customers and partners.
- Images and other files missing: Another common issue is that images or other files fail to migrate over to the new website. This can be caused by a number of things, including incorrect file paths, server errors, or connectivity issues.
- Permissions and ownership: If you’re migrating your website to a new server, you’ll need to make sure that all the correct permissions and ownership are in place. Otherwise, your website may not function properly or may be vulnerable to security issues.
- DNS issues: One of the most common problems with website migrations is DNS-related. If you don’t properly update your DNS settings, visitors will be taken to your old website instead of your new one. This can be a major problem if you’re launching a new product or service on your new website.
In order to avoid these issues, it’s important to plan your website migration carefully. Make sure you have backups of all your website files and databases before starting the process. It’s also a good idea to hire a professional to help you with the migration.
Email direction and visibility
To protect from email harvesting by bots or hackers, during a website redesign, designers use images or even captcha forms for the email addresses displayed on their sites. All contact forms that are on the old website should also be on the new one, as well as any other ways that people can get in touch.
The absence of any of the above practices can lead to a situation where the new website is not optimally visible to potential visitors, which can lead to a loss in traffic and conversions. When redesigning your website, be sure to take into account all of the above factors in order to avoid any potential losses in traffic or conversions.
Slow Loading speed
One of the most common issues that can occur during a website redesign is slow loading speed. This can be caused by a number of factors, such as large images that have not been properly optimized, too much code on the page, or even using an outdated hosting platform. Whatever the cause, slow loading speed can lead to a decrease in traffic and conversions, as potential visitors are likely to click away from the site if it takes too long to load. To avoid this issue, be sure to test your website’s loading speed before and after the redesign, and make sure that all images are properly optimized.
A good example of this is optimizing images for different screen sizes. With so many people now accessing the internet on mobile devices, it’s important to make sure that your website is designed to load quickly on these smaller screens. One way to do this is to optimize your images for different screen sizes, so that they don’t have to be fully loaded when someone visits your site on a mobile device.
Prioritizing looks over functionality and user experience
Another common mistake made during website redesigns is prioritizing looks over functionality and user experience. It’s important to remember that your website is first and foremost a tool for your business, and that its primary purpose is to help you achieve your business goals. With that in mind, it’s important to make sure that your website’s design is focused on delivering a good user experience and providing the information and functionality that your visitors need.
Trying to do too much with your redesign leads to clutter and confusion because there’s simply too much going on. When in doubt, less is more. A clean, well-organized design will do a better job of delivering your message and helping you achieve your goals than a design that’s overloaded with information and images.
Website redesigns are a great opportunity to improve your website and achieve your business goals. However, they need to be approached with care and planning to ensure that they’re successful. Keep your goals in mind, focus on the user experience, and make sure that your design is clean and well-organized. With a little bit of thought and effort, you can create a website that’s better than ever.
Thanks for reading! I hope this article has been helpful. Please feel free to leave any questions or comments below.