Redesigning a website takes a lot of time and money, so it’s usually very tempting just to avoid this topic and leave everything as it is. However, doing nothing is not the best business strategy you can implement in this case. Because the results you will receive from a quality redesign performed by professionals may cover your costs for the web development and increase your revenue by several times.
Note: in this article, by “website redesign” we mean upgrading not only the appearance of a website but also its functionality.
But before diving into recommendations, let’s briefly outline what ROI means in terms of the website redesign.
What is the website ROI?
ROI stands for the return on investments and shows its efficiency. In other words, ROI conveys how much can you get compared to what you out in.
Generally, the formula looks like this:
ROI = (Gains – Investment Costs) / Investment Costs
In regards to the web development, investment costs will always mean the amount of money you spend to redesign your website. The price may vary significantly as it depends on a service provider you choose. For instance, freelancers from Asia are usually the cheapest option but the quality of a final result will most likely be compromised. Developers from the US are expensive; while software engineers from Eastern Europe offer the supreme price/quality ratio. We have a separate article that covers this topic in more details. You can read it here.
There are a few common measurements that are used to calculate the website ROI and determine whether a website redesign pays off. Let’s discuss them next, so we can be on the same page.
Speaking about website return on investment, it’s essential that you get at least as much out of your website as you invest into it over the reasonable period of time. In other words, the results you receive from your website should be not lower than the price you paid for the website redesign.
Here are some measurements you most likely will want to consider:
- Traffic. What is probably equally important for all website owners is the total number of visitors to a website. And it’s paramount to keep an eye on both — new and return visitors since decline or a low level of traffic is a proven sign that your website needs revamp.
- Conversion rate. This is the percentage of website visitors who took actions you wanted them to take out of the total number of visitors. Such actions could be, for example, purchasing a product, subscribing to a newsletter, filling out an online contact form etc. The higher the conversion rate is, the better your website is doing.
- Bounce rate. Unlike the previous indicator, the bounce rate should be as low as possible; otherwise, you have a problem. The bounce rate is the percentage of website visitors who left a website without taking any actions and having viewed just one page.
- Website lifespan. This is the period of time your website brings the desired results without being upgraded. Ideally, it’s about five years or more. But the average lifespan constitutes approximately three years.
Everything, of course, depends on your goals and expectations. For example, you may want to increase sales, or create an awareness of your products and services, or just save time by automating some routine tasks. In each of the mentioned cases, different figures would be more or less valuable to you. But we recommend tracking all of them to see the big picture.
To make this task easier, you may also use an online website ROI calculator — you can easily find a lot of them on the Internet. Website ROI calculators usually have all the necessary tools to provide you with insights into important data that is calculated based on the website traffic, conversion and bounce rates, and other factors.
How to do the website redesign right
To maximize the website ROI, it’s not enough just to somehow upgrade your website. It’s crucial that you apply best practices and consider all the aspects. Here are some tips and recommendations:
Determine the areas that need improvements
Before making any changes it’s essential to determine what exactly doesn’t work on your existing website. In some cases, minor tweaks can solve the problem while sometimes comprehensive changes are required. So when choosing a development team, make sure that they have enough expertise to determine all the bottlenecks correctly.
PinMart is a provider of lapel pins, emblems, lanyards based in Illinois, the US. They performed A/B testing to determine why the old website doesn’t bring the desired results. The problems included not compelling homepage, poor navigation and irrelevant brand image. The company performed a full website redesign and the analytics showed that its revenue increased by 51.8% and the number of sales increased by 40.5%
Implement responsive design
According to Statista, there were 4.43 billion mobile users worldwide in 2017 and it’s expected that this number will grow to 4.78 billion by 2020. Most of them, specifically — 52 %, said that they would unlikely engage with a company if their mobile experience on its website is poor. We believe this data speaks for itself. If you want to have a website that converts customers, it has to work well on all their devices, including smartphones. So the responsive design is the first thing you should invest in (if you haven’t done this yet).
Think Tank Photo is a manufacturer and retailer of bags and accessories for cameras based in California, the US. After implementing responsive design, the company’s revenue increased almost by three times because mobile users viewed more pages and, when the mobile experience was improved, they became more prone to completing transactions (purchases from smartphones increased 96%).
Don’t skimp on functionality and performance
As mentioned, redesigning a website doesn’t refer only to its appearance, it’s about the functionality as well. Because let’s be realistic: no one will stay on the website that performs poorly even if its design is really beautiful. New technologies emerge each year (if not more often) and devices which customers use also change. For these reasons, ignoring how your website’s performing is definitely a wrong and costly strategy.
A tech team of the UNCSA (University of North Carolina School of the Arts) decided to redesign their website when they realized that it doesn’t help target audience (e.g. students, donors etc.) as it’s supposed to. They took a holistic approach: upgraded information architecture, created new content and improved the functionality. The results exceeded all the expectations: admission inquiries increased by 518% and the number of donations increased by 48%.
Keep customers in mind
According to Hubspot, 76% of users believe that ease of use is the most important feature of any website. So when thinking about revamping your website, don’t forget to consider user journey. Is it easy for website visitors to move from one stage to the next one? Can they do this intuitively? Is it convenient for a user to get necessary information about products and make a purchase? All those think matters more than you may think. Hence, make sure that there is a professional UI/UX designer in a development team you hire to redesign your website. Otherwise, your conversion rate may suffer.
Bandwidth is a Communications Platform as a Service company for businesses based in North Carolina, the US. After they made a layout more distinct and redesigned a CTA (call to action) on the Contact Us page, the conversion rate increased by 173%. This is because they managed to see the company’s website through the eyes of their visitors and then make it more relevant and engaging.
In today’s fast-paced digital world, you cannot do without redesigning your website. But it doesn’t mean that you just have to spend lots of money not to let it “die”. If done right, a website ROI may be thousands of dollars, so you’ll not only cover your costs for web development but also increase your revenue significantly.
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