eCommerce Website Redesign Process and Steps
When it’s time to redesign your eCommerce website what is there to consider? Aside from improving both design and functionality, the web design company and your company will also need to consider many technical and marketing elements. These can range from current hosting platforms to search engine rankings you don’t want to lose. If a redesign is done correctly, it should always be profitable. Without redesigning your website on a somewhat regular basis, your brand and sales tool will be out-of-date and conversion rates will likely dwindle.
The eCommerce Website Redesign Process Includes:
- Creating a new look / design
- Determining a content migration plan
- Planning for new content / pages
- Data migration (current orders. products, customers, passwords)
- Transfer SEO (titles, links, etc.)
- Redirects for SEO (301s for new URLs)
- Integrate Google Analytics
- Testing and QA
- New host configuration
- Launch and test
- Start on-going SEO and conversion optimization
What Does Google Think?
One of the main questions we’re asked when redesigning a successful website is, “will we lose our search engine rankings?” As you know, obtaining these rankings took time and the last thing anyone wants to do is throw them away and start over, or upset Google. Proper technical elements such as 301 redirect and site maps should be in place to ensure Google understands where your new pages are and which new pages have replaced old ones. Thinking logically, it makes sense that Google would not penalize you for redesigning your website. It’s merely an evolution and is necessary as technology progresses. You should, if done right, be rewarded for an updated, modern, clean coded website. Often, you’ll see search engine rankings jump up within weeks. If done incorrectly, you’ll usually see a major dip followed by a slow crawl back as more effort is put into SEO.
Consider What Has Worked In The Past and What Has Not
Listening to your customers can be one of the most important things you can do. What have visitors complained about? What elements have always seems a bit cumbersome? Are there features you need? It’s important to address these issues in the redesign. Also, consider your competitors. What do they have that you don’t? How can you improve upon what they have done? Remember, figuring out the solutions are not always your responsibility, but you should have help from your web design company. For example, we often talk with clients about previous customer experiences, problems and work on solutions that will improve revenue, save time and create a larger bottom line.
Although it’s not a major issue to switch hosts, it’s worth noting that if it’s not necessary to switch, then you shouldn’t. Some hosting plans work with certain technologies, and the company you’re working with may suggest a certain plan. Don’t let switching hosts hold you back, but be sure to let your developers know what you currently have. From what we’ve seen, switching hosts should not negatively impact search engine rankings.
Just Make It Easy To Order
No matter what you’re selling, if you own an eCommerce website, the front end of the website (the side the visitors see) is most important. Creating the best eCommerce ordering system in your industry will give your company an edge. It comes down to one point… make it easy to order. From different one page checkout systems, to accepting multiple payment options, these actions will convert visitors into sales. Consider how your ordering experience can be better than all of your competitors.
Transferring Your Data
To learn more about the importance of your data, please read The Importance of Databases and Data for Powering an eCommerce Website. We highly recommend it!
We’d like to talk with you. If you’re in the website redesign process, talk with an OuterBox consultant.