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Transforming Your Website: A Step-by-Step Strategy Guide for Redesign

Revamp your website strategically with this step-by-step guide. Beyond aesthetics, focus on SEO and technical aspects for SERP ranking. Read on to know more!

Home / Blogs / Transforming Your Website: A Step-by-Step Strategy Guide for Redesign
Raghav Tayal

Head Of Operations - Digital Web Solutions

January 16, 2024

I. Introduction

When you redesign your website, it is easy to overlook the SEO and technical aspects and only concentrate on the aesthetic. 

Your website needs to look attractive to engage your visitors. But, more than that, it has to be user-friendly and designed according to SEO guidelines to actually rank on SERPs.

Your website is “more than just a pretty face,” and the following guide will help you redesign your website that will generate revenue.

A. What is redesigning the website?

Resigning your website is a significant step that involves changing your website’s codes, content, structure, and visual elements to improve user experience for your visitors. It is a great strategy to reduce the bounce rate and boost your revenue. 

Just like humans need to reinvent themselves once in a while, you also need to redesign your website to keep it updated with the evolving needs of your industry. 

B. Need to redesign the website

Redesigning your website is a very strategic decision influenced by several factors. The main goal of redesigning your website is to expand your online presence and emerge as the top leader in your niche. If you don’t redesign your website, it will become dormant and a liability more than an asset for your business. 

C. Brief explanation of the importance of SEO in website redesign

Your website is more than just looks. Therefore, SEO is very crucial while redesigning it. 

SEO should be included in your website redesign strategy as it helps increase your website traffic and revenue. Including SEO in your website is imperative, no matter your design or structure. 

The general logic is that SEO optimizes your website for visitors and search engines. When you include SEO in your strategy, you are making it easier for search engines to find and index your website. This, in turn, improves your website ranking. 

Moreover, SEO also improves the user experience of your website. Your visitors will find the information that they are looking for easily. 

So, it is a win-win situation for both you and your customers. 

II. Assessing Your Current Website 

A. Website audit 

You must begin with a website audit to understand what is wrong with your current website. This involves:

  1. Content assessment: Evaluate the current content on the website and analyze whether it is relevant to what your brand stands for. Your brand voice is subject to changes, so you must ensure the content is aligned with your idealogy, what you represent, and your value. Therefore, identify outdated and redundant content that needs to be removed or updated. 
    Moreover, analyze the structure of your content to ensure that it has a logical flow. Also, while assessing the content, check if you can improve the keywords, meta tag, and anchor text to improve the overall experience. 
  2. URL assessment: Evaluate the URL structure of every web page. Assess their clarity. Consider implementing a user-friendly, intuitive URL structure that aligns with the website’s purpose and hierarchy. Also, ensure that all the URLs have a dofollow HTML tag. 
  3. Functionality assessment: Another thing to assess when redesigning your website is looking at the site’s overall functionality. Your visitors will love a website that is responsive, easy to use, and navigate. Also, check whether the website is optimized for mobile responsiveness. Additionally, monitor the interactiveness of the website, including interactive forms, chatbots, and other elements. 
  4. Performance assessment: Performance assessment involves page speed, server response time, and browser compatibility. Identify any bottlenecks that may be affecting the page speed of your website. Moreover, consider optimizing your server resources or content delivery networks to enhance performance. Test your website across different browsers to ensure compatibility. 

B. Competitor analysis:

Competitor analysis is very crucial while planning the redesigned structure of your website. One essential thing to include in your SEO game is that you do exactly what your top competitors are doing, but you do it better than them. 

Look at how they have designed their website, structured their content, targeted keywords, backlink profile, and internal linking structure and do it better than them.

III. Defining Your Redesign Goals

A. Identifying objectives:

You need to identify the objectives for which you want to redesign your website. This will save you a lot of time and money. When you have a set objective, it is easier to work towards it rather than beating around the bush without any goal. Do you want to redesign your website because your content is outdated, your brand voice has changed over the years, or you want to target a new audience? While setting your goals, remember that they need to be realistic and specific. This will help you follow the goals. 

The following factors should be a part of your redesigning goal: 

  1. Improve user experience: The ultimate goal of your website redesigning should be to improve user experience. Visitors who find your website engaging will automatically be encouraged to explore your web pages, leading to a decreased bounce rate and increased revenue.
  2. Increase conversion rates: The next goal is to convert your website visitors into paying customers. Some things that you can keep in mind while redesigning your website are shortening your conversion form, introducing a live chat option, and conducting A/B testing.  
  3. Enhance branding: While redesigning your website, you must also focus on enhancing your branding. Your website should speak your story and truly represent what you stand for. Moreover, the color scheme should represent you and your brand. This will help you eliminate the clutter and emerge as a unique brand.

B. Setting measurable goals

You must have measurable goals so that you can track your progress. Tracking your progress will help you stay motivated. Tools like the Google Console allow you to track and monitor your website’s performance. 

C. Creating a redesign roadmap

A road map to redesign your website will help you take significant steps towards the goals. Redesigning your website is much more complex than launching it. So, having a road map helps. You must analyze your current and competitor websites in your road map and establish practical and achievable goals.

IV. Planning the Redesign

A. Establishing a timeline: Timelines document your website redesigning progress. A timeline will also depict important milestones, deadlines, and other significant events to motivate your redesigning team to work toward greatness. 
B. Selecting a website platform: Selecting a website platform to build your website is similar to selecting a foundation for your home. It is the main base on which your website will stand. Everything aspect of your website, starting from the look and functionality to user experience and maintenance, will be determined by this choice.

C. Choosing a design approach

1. Responsive design: A responsive design is an approach where the structure of your website is based on user behavior and the device from which they are opening your website. This includes considering the size of the screen and orientation. One of the factors that must be considered while choosing a responsive design is the screen resolution. There are a lot of new devices coming to the market. These devices with different features can handle size, functionality, and color variations. Some are more compatible with landscape mode, and others may be better for portrait mode. When designing your website, you must check whether all these factors are considered.

2. Mobile-first design: Reports have shown that 8 out of 10 website visitors stop engaging with a website if it is not mobile-friendly. Even Google ranks websites that are not optimized for mobile users very low. But this doesn’t mean that the desktop experience should be overlooked. Your website should be compatible with desktops, mobile phones, and tablets.

V. Information Architecture

A. Site Structure

  1. Organizing the Website’s Structure: Three site structures are commonly suitable for different websites.
    • Linear or sequential structure: The pages are connected in a logical linear structure. For example, the main page is connected to the service page and then to a request page. This web structure is best for small websites.
    • Network or web-linked structure: In this structure, any page is accessible from a particular page. This web structure is best for pages that have limited interconnected pages. 
    • Hierarchical or tree-like structure: This web structure is most popular, versatile, and suitable for websites of any size. It follows a hierarchical arrangement of categories, moving from the general pages to specific ones. 
  2. Creating SEO-Friendly URLs: Google loves simple and SEO-friendly URLs for websites. But what is an SEO-friendly URL? These are keyword-rich URLs.  You can implement it by adding the keywords you want a particular page to rank for in your URL. But that also means that you don’t mislead your audience. The word you have used must be relevant to the content on your page. 

B. Sitemap

  1. Generating XML Sitemaps for Search Engines: A site map is a crucial part of your website redesigning if it is too big. Search engines read your site map to crawl into your website more efficiently, which leads to more pages getting indexed and higher search ranking. You can create a site map automatically or build it from scratch. After building your site map, you must submit it to Google Console to be indexed and ranked. 

VI. Technical SEO

A. Schema Markup

  1. Implementing Structured Data: Structured data are semantic codes used by search engines to understand the content of your page. It helps search engines to characterize and categorize the content on your page. 
    Even though search engines are very powerful, they appreciate pages and websites that have structured data added to them. This eventually leads to your page ranking on SERPs. 

B. Canonical Tags

  1. Managing Duplicate Content with Canonical Tags: Using canonical tags helps solve the problem of duplicate content appearing on multiple websites. A canonical tag tells the search engines which version of the URL you want to show on the SERPs.  

C. Page Speed

  1. Optimizing Loading Times for Mobile Devices: To optimize your website loading time for mobile devices, you must make the design compatible with phones. It will improve user experience, reduce bounce rate, and improve website ranking.  few factors impact the website loading speed for mobile devices. These include:
    • The number of images, videos, and other media. 
    • Number of HTTP requests. 
    • Server-side scripting and coding
    • Hosting service provider, CMS, and server location
    • Use of cache technology and minification

VII. Development and Testing

A. Coding and development: 

Coding refers to the process of using programming languages for servers and applications. Coding is a unique language that helps you communicate with computers. All websites are built through coding, and there are two types of coding languages: front-end and back-end. 

B. Integrating third-party tools and plugins 

Integrating tools and plugins lets you control the relationship between third-party software and your website.  

CRM systems, analytic software, and email marketing software can be integrated to make the experience more favorable for your visitors. 

C. Quality assurance and testing 

  1. Functional testing:  Functional testing focuses on the outcome of processing rather than the processing mechanism. It is conducted to check if the website meets user requirements and expectations. 
  2. Functional testing is usually done through the following steps:

    • Identify the goals: Identifying the goals is based on why you started with your website redesigning process. 
    • Create test scenarios: List possible scenarios your visitor might encounter on your website.
    • Design test cases: Create test cases based on different outcomes. 
    • Execute the test cases: Run the test cases and identify the defects. Now, track and resolve the defects. 
  1. Cross-browser testing: Cross-browser testing is done to verify if your website works properly across different browsers. 
    While redesigning your website, you must check whether it is compatible with browsers such as Chrome, Bing, Yahoo, etc. 
  1. Performance testing:  Performance testing checks your website’s performance regarding responsiveness, stability, and consistency. It gathers the indicators’ results to examine the website’s speed, robustness, and performance. 
    Some of the crucial performance indicators are:

    • Browser and network response,
    • Serve request time,
    • User volume,
    • Processor memory consumption.

D. Security measures:

Security measures for your website are crucial to creating brand awareness, engaging customers, and driving more sales and revenue. There are a few ways you can make your website more secure:

  1. Use unique passwords and update them regularly: 80% of hacking breaches result from insecure passwords. Therefore, updating your website passwords regularly is very crucial.
  2. Get an SSL certificate: An SSL certificate is the basic website security measure. This certificate helps keep data and personal information on your website safe. 
  3. Choose the right CMS: A CMS helps you manage the content of your website and keep it secure. 
  4. Backup your website: Backing up your website will retrieve the data and relaunch your website if the server fails or any other issue arses. 

VIII. Content Migration

A. Data backup:

Before making any changes to your existing content, you need to prioritize the safety of your existing content and perform a data backup. This step will act as your safety net against any unexpected issue during the migration process. 

B. Content migration plan: 

Next, you must develop a content migration plan. If your website is synced with Google Analytics, you will have a plethora of data to help you determine which content is doing well and which is not performing as expected. You can check which are the most popular and least popular pages and devise a strategy targeting the least popular ones. 

C. Redirect strategy for old URLs:

There are two types of redirects: 301 redirects and 302 redirects. 

301 redirect is used when a has been permanently removed from a website. It passes all ranking power from the old URL to the new URL.

On the other hand, the 302 redirect is temporary. A 302 redirect is the same as a 301 redirect; however, viewers see it as a temporary move. 

Depending on the pages you want to redesign and the content you want to optimize, you can use any of the two approaches. 

Content Interlinking

For any content to be ranked, it needs to be linked. Interlinking your content helps your website visitors to find useful and related information. 

Moreover, it closely knits all the pages of your website together. So, if viewers want to read content related to the pillar page, they can click on the internal links. 

IX. Launching the Redesigned Website 

A. Pre-launch checklist 

After you have successfully redesigned your website, there are a few pre-launch checklists:

  • Activate the SSL certificate for privacy protection
  • Update your CMS 
  • Set up a good analytic platform to analyze your website’s performance. 
  • Test your website’s user experience
  • Check whether your website has mobile compatibility
  • Make sure all the links on your website are working
  • Upload your website’s XML site map on Google Console for search engine optimization

B. Deployment and DNS changes 

DNS is essential for your website to operate properly; a failed DNS can bring your website to a halt. The main problem with DNS is even a tiny mistake in the configuration has a ripple effect that impacts your entire website. 

But there is nothing to worry about because DNS changes are simple and not risky for your business. 

Before launching your website, you must check all the DNS changes by checking the application source code, using branches, pull requests, and merges.

C. Monitoring for issues:

Once your redesigned website is set to launch, it’s crucial to implement a robust monitoring system to identify and address any potential issues promptly.

D. Announcing the new website

After you have redesigned the website, you have to spread the news that you are relaunching your website.

You can do this by:

  • Posting about it on social media.
  • Writing a press release about the relaunch.
  • Sending emails announcing that you are relaunching the website.
  • Promote the relaunch with exciting offers.
  • Host a website relaunching party. 

Ensuring All SEO Elements Are in Place

The SEO elements that you need to check are the following:

  1. Mobile friendliness: Google appreciates a mobile-first approach for crawling, indexing, and ranking pages.
  2. Website speed: Fast page loading is crucial for SEO success.
  3. Website structure: An intuitive website structure is crucial for enhanced user experience and SERP ranking. 
  4. Internal linking: Internal linking helps search engines crawl and index your website and help users navigate the web pages.
  5. Schema Markup: Structured schema markup helps search engines understand the elements of your website. 

X. Post-Launch Optimization 

A. Monitoring website performance

Monitor the performance of your website with the help of tools such as Google Console. The key metrics that you need to analyze in your website are:

  1. Checking the website speed: The website speed includes the time taken by the website to manifest the title of the site, the time between user request and content to materialize in your website, and the time taken for request origination. 
  2. Error request: This metric tracks the percentage of error requests your website generates.
  3. Bounce rate: This shows the number of site visitors who left your website without interacting. 
  4. Website traffic: It shows the volume of traffic coming from different sources.
  5. Conversion rate: Conversion rate determines the number of website visitors taking desired actions.

B. User testing and feedback 

User testing and feedback are essential because they help validate assumptions, identify problems, and develop solutions. You should use the right tools, metrics, and methods to test your redesigned website and ensure the project succeeds. 

C. A/B testing for optimization

A/B testing eliminates all the guesswork and enables website developers to develop data-backed solutions. 

In A/B testing, you have the original testing variable and a variation of the original variable. 

This testing is done to determine the “winner” between both variables.

D. Continuous improvement

Maintaining a website is a journey of continuous improvement. You must continue developing new SEO strategies and website structure to be at the top of the search engine results pages. 

Even after you have redesigned and relaunched your website, you must continuously monitor all the metrics and check for any Google updates. 

E. Continuously Monitoring SEO Performance

Ongoing SEO Maintenance

  • Regular Audits
    • Scheduling Periodic SEO Audits and Adjustments: Periodic SEO audits are crucial for reviewing the success of your website. This includes looking for opportunities to scale up, fixing any SEO mistakes, determining the tactics that are not working, and improving them. 
  • Content Updates
    • Keeping Content Fresh and Relevant: To keep your content fresh and updated, you should conduct keyword research and find the keywords your competitors rank for. Moreover, refresh your content and change the old data and irrelevant statistics, as Google ranks content in terms of freshness as well. So, it is essential to ensure that it is updated regularly. 
  • Algorithm Update
    • Staying Informed and Adapting to Search Engine Algorithm Changes: Google updates its algorithms regularly to improve user experience. You need to keep track of the algorithm updates to keep your redesigned website on top of SEPs. 

Conclusion 

A website design that puts users first will win in every scenario. Even search engines appreciate designs that give website visitors the best user experience. 

Therefore, remember that no matter the aesthetics you go for in your website redesign, the first and foremost thing is every decision should be aimed towards improving the user experience. 

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