Even with constant maintenance and continuous modification, the periodic website overhaul is unavoidable. But how do you know when it’s time? In our work, we’ve encountered three main drivers behind the decision to redesign a website …
1. Your website’s technology no longer works for you.
Websites today serve as an organization’s home base. They’re where many of your transactions take place—from donations to event registration to sales and admissions inquiries. When things don’t function properly, your website isn’t doing its job anymore.
Because today’s websites require almost daily attention, it’s critical that staff members can easily manage a site without specialized coding or technical skills. Sometimes a website’s content management system was chosen to match a long-gone staff member’s specific skill set. Or the systems you are using now don’t talk to each other.
Getting your website onto a platform that works for current — and future — staff is crucial to sustaining smooth operations.
2. Your website no longer projects the image you want it to.
I’m sure you’ve encountered a website that looks like it hasn’t changed since 1995—and wondered whether they are still in business. A good test of whether your image needs an update is to ask yourself three questions:
- Are we attracting the right people?
- Are we attracting enough of the right people?
- Are they taking the actions we want?
If your website isn’t helping you attract what you need to thrive then the look and layout have become a problem.
3. Your website’s content doesn’t align with who you are, what you do or what your visitors are looking for.
Your website is the place most people will look to learn about your work. When a new strategic plan comes into play or a key program is closed your message needs to adjust.
Sometimes all it takes is updating copy or deleting a page. But when your organization has established new goals, a new brand or made any major shift, the change in message may require more than tweaks.
So, what do you do when all of those are true, but you don’t have the time or money to deal with everything at once?
Our client Delaware Hospice, had a website with all those problems. But a troublesome back end that kept them from posting new content was the biggest limitation. On top of that…it was the beginning of September and they were heading right into prime event and donation season. Prime time for website usage.
To help Delaware Hospice get its new website up quickly on a platform that would meet its fundraising and site management needs, we agreed to approach the project in two phases.
In Phase 1, using Delaware Hospice’s old content, we designed and built a new site, fixing the image and technology issues in just 8 weeks.
Now in Phase 2 we’re working through the existing content to refresh and update it—adding new content and retiring old messaging. This way may require some backtracking and redesign of pages. However, we are now building on a solid foundation and the costs for content and adjustments are shifted to this year’s budget.
Are you or your audience struggling with your website? Give us a call at 267-468-7949 or drop us a line at email@example.com to talk through your priorities—and the possibilities!