After 4 years of the same website and over 2 years working on a new one, including 3 redesigns that did not get coded, I am proud to say our website has finally launched. For the past year and a half I have cringed every time I had to visit our website. I knew that it was not an example of our best work. I love our new website now, our employees are proud of it, and I know it will be a lead generation tool for our business. It was not an easy road getting here though so I am going to share what I learned.
1. Don't forget that your website is the 'reception area' of your business
Seth recently gave the analogy that having an old website is like showing up for a sales meeting in your pajamas it is not a good first impression and you have to do a lot to overcome it. Whether you can afford to do a complete website overhaul or just a refresh, it is important that you realize that the website has to be groomed to keep it looking top notch. While we were in the process of rebuilding our website, we made some small layout tweaks and updated the home page sliders with fresh content.
2. Keep Content Simple- You can always expand later
A big hold up on our website was the copy. We started off wanting to explain every aspect of our service so we hired a copywriter to help us with the content. Months later we realized the services we wanted to focus on were the only content we needed on the website, so we changed a 20 page section on services to 5 pages. Our strategy is to use our blog as an area where we can expand content of our other services that we offer so we can capture those keywords on our site.
3. Be willing to start over if it's just not right
Even though I cringe at the 'unbillable' hours we spent on our website, I am so happy that we redesigned our site 3 times during this process. Each iteration became better and better...want to see the nixed designs?