You’ve come to terms with it. Your website is outmoded, outdated, and outshone. It’s time for a redesign—a revolutionary website redesign.
So, you’ve decided to set to work and make it come to fruition.
Before going further in any website design project, there are some very serious financial dangers that you should know about before jumping in – and I’m not talking about the cost of the website.
Here are the potential dangers you face for your company’s bottom line, and how you can combat them.
Danger 1. Drop in Revenue From Loss Of Rankings
During a revolutionary design, content will often be modified. While this may result in better content, if it’s not done correctly, it can cause a drop in keyword density for the page.
Additionally, if the site structure has been modified, the flow of links from other areas of the website may be blocked or reduced.
When Google, and other search engines, see this occurring, it will result in your organic ranking dropping further down in the SERPS. If done poorly, this drop can take you all the way from the first page to the third, fourth, fifth, or worse.
If the keywords you lost happened to be driving your target audience to your website, this will often translate into a serious drop in revenue for your business.
And we’ve seen it happen before. Several times.
In this case, it’s much easier to bring in a marketing company prior to launch to help guide the project to technical completion, rather than fighting after the fact to pick up the pieces with a dwindling budget.
To combat this, there are three possible options. The first option is this— change as little of the content as possible. This will help to keep a consistent keyword density.
The second, do not modify the sites architecture by changing links. As you transfer the new content, be sure to keep the links as close to the same structure as they had originally been. This will keep your site architecture nearly identical to its appearance before the redesign.
The third, and best option, is to have a trained internet marketing team guide this process for you. They will be able to rewrite your content, making it more engaging with better likelihood of conversion, while keeping your ranking and ranking potential at the highest level possible.
Additionally, they will usually guide you into a new, and better, site architecture, causing a more cohesive flow of links and link juice.
In this case, a well-performed revolutionary website design could actually benefit you, rather than pose dangers.
Danger 2. Reduction in referral traffic due to broken backlinks
All too often, site redesigns change the fundamental architecture of of the website.
Let’s say that I had a magnificent blog post that had gotten quite a bit of attention. The post, prior to the redesign, has a URL of /blog/why-you-should-worry-about-your-seo. After the redesign, it is decided to shorten the URL to /why-worry-about-seo.
All of the links that went to the post before are now “broken” and people (as well as search engine crawlers) are given a 404 Error: not found.
This is something that humans don’t like very much, and can all too easily happen to redesigned sites.
You have a couple of options to make sure that this doesn’t happen.
One, keep the exact same URL as before. This is a solid option, even if it means having a less-than-fully-optimized site.
By keeping the URL the way it was, linking websites and search engines consider the page identical to the one before the redesign. This means you keep all of the ranking equity you’ve built up.
Option two, however, can help you move further up the ladder. Using 301 redirects, you can take all of the links, and most of the ranking equity, and transfer it to the new URL. If this URL is better optimized for search engines, you can see a significant hike in rankings.
Danger 3. Unexpected Changes In User Behavior
Unless you are working with a website design team that is familiar with conversion rate optimization and website optimization, it can be all too easy to find yourself with a website that isn’t user-friendly or, more to the point, optimized to encourage users to travel further down your sales funnel.
When a customer returns to a website to find that it is drastically different than they remember it, it will throw them. If the site is still intuitive, clean, and easy to navigate, they will rapidly regain themselves and continue exploring with the sense of one seeing a newly remodeled home.
If the site is not intuitive, however, the chances are very high that they will bounce off your site. If they are unable to understand or navigate quickly, they will decide it simply isn’t worth their time, and you will have lost that user, and that potential revenue.
To prevent this from occurring, we recommend that site changes are moderate.
If a full revolutionary overhaul is needed, the site should be designed by a web design team that is going to be able to produce an intuitive site optimized for conversion, and is easy for the search engines to rank.
A good internet marketing team is vital for preserving the profitability of your website.
Don’t overreach yourself
It’s almost always better to take the incremental approach to web design. Unless there is something grievously wrong and demonstrably destroying the growth of your site, and it can’t be fixed without a redesign, stick to small improvements over the long haul. Your users, the SERPS, and your Wallet will thank you for it.
Have questions about how to do this? Contact us for more information.