They say nothing lasts forever, and so is it with website designs. Eventually, they too will have to be discarded and replaced. When people get their website designed and developed, they often do not bear in mind, that there will come a time when it will become obsolete, and therefore do not plan for that eventuality.
The reality of the matter, however, is that this is unavoidable and it is hence prudent to plan and budget for a website redesign a few years down the line, or when change becomes necessary. Having a website redesigned is unavoidable because change is unavoidable. And there are several reasons why this happens, 6 of which are outlined below.
A website should always reflect the business or organisation it serves. This means that the website should be in tune with what is going on within the business or organisation. Processes and procedures within the business or organisation, should be aligned with and reflect what’s going on with the website.
This also means that, when the business or organisation itself changes, the existing website should be re-evaluated, to establish if a redesign is necessary as a result of those changes. It makes no sense to maintain the same design, if it no longer serves the business or organisation.
Over time, the strategic objectives of the business or organisation will change, and when they do, this may necessitate a website redesign. A redesign may be necessary because a website is supposed to serve the business or organisation, and this is achieved by mirroring its objectives in the website design.
Mirroring objectives in the design, is achieved in the way processes are carried out on the website. For instance, if the business or organisation would like to engage people more than they did before, the website will now have to be redesigned, considering the number of web forms to be used, and changes in the layout of the website may also have to be considered.
The existing market conditions are a determining factor in the design of a website, and when there is a significant shift, this may necessitate a website redesign. It therefore becomes imperative for your business or organisation, to respond to these changes.
Your customers may be looking for certain trends in modern website design, for which you need to implement, in order to stay relevant. Or it may be that the competition is implementing certain design trends for which your business or organisation would be left behind, if not emulated and improved upon.
Technology ages at a tremendous pace. The moment your website goes live, it is already accelerating towards obsolescence. Site updates slow this process down, but eventually the website becomes obsolete, and has to be revamped, which would often necessitate a redesign from the ground up.
Trends also decide how long you can keep running a website, before you are forced to redesign. A good example of trends that can’t be ignored, is responsive design, which allows a website to change its dimensions to automatically fit the screen on which it is being viewed. This recent trend has seen numerous websites redesigned to keep up with the times.
Experience is the greatest of teachers. Perhaps when you first had your website designed, you would have had no clue what was needed. And even if you did have a clue, those needs change. Whatever the case may be, with experience in owning a website, you would have developed a better sense of what you need.
From experience you would learn what works for you, versus what doesn’t. You would have a better idea of what to request of your web designer and developer, in implementing your wishes this time around. These changes would most likely require a fundamental website redesign.
A very obvious reason for wanting to redesign your website, would be that the existing website is no longer doing the trick. The reasons for this would have evolved over time, or it could be that you made a bad decision in choosing the web designer and developer, to do the job in the first place. Whatever the case may be, it is crucial to go ahead and redesign the website, when this becomes the case.
The trick, when it comes to redesigning your website, is not to get too emotionally invested in the current design. Most people, myself included, get attached to a website design, especially if it seems to be a great one when completed. Whilst emotional attachment may not necessarily be fatal, the right thing to do is to evaluate the situation rationally, and make a reasonable call on whether it is time to redesign.
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