5 Best Practices for Website Redesign

With the recent change in Google’s search algorithm, which now favors mobile-friendly websites, means now is the perfect time to do that website you have been putting off.

Here are some things to consider during the redesign process to make sure your site is error free before launch.

1. Ensure accessibility

If your website is not accessible, you could be excluding one in five potential visitors and therefore there is no excuse to not ensuring accessibility of your site from day one. The best standards to follow are the international guidelines called “Web Content Accessibility Guidelines” by the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI), a part of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

Download the Web Accessibility Checklist.

2. Keep your text consistent

Before migrating or creating content for your redesigned site, you should set up policies for your content editors to follow. For instance you can ban certain variations of your company or brand name to make sure contributors and editors are using these properties correctly. If your organization is undergoing a reshuffle, you can take advantage of the redesign process and make sure new department names and employee titles are used consistently across all content.

3. Get rid of placeholder pages

You can also use policies to pinpoint unwanted content you never meant to publish. Common examples include placeholder text, such as ‘test’, ‘title’ and ‘Lorem ipsum’. For those using assistive technologies, test pages—even those that are supposedly hidden—will still be present in the source code.

Blog post: “Five examples of great website policies.”

4. Link correctly

Here is a tip: Get rid of the ‘Read more’ and ‘Click here’ hyperlinks once and for all. Not only are they inaccessible to a number of users, they also make no sense when taken out of context because they have no explicitly stated destination. To stay on top of this, you can establish a policy for banning these and similar phrases. You also have to be aware of broken and dead links– They mess with the user experience of your site and might negatively affect a visitor’s perception of your brand. Therefore, run a link check and make sure you are directing visitors to the intended destinations.

5. Optimize for mobile

As mentioned, now that search engines are increasingly focusing on delivering mobile-friendly results, it is more important than ever to make sure your website works as intended for users visiting through mobile devices. Google provides a Mobile-Friendly Test you can run on your site to make sure it lives up to certain criteria, including but not limited to:

  • Easily readable text.
  • Responsive site dimensions.
  • Easily touchable links.

Helping users find mobile-friendly pages by Google (external link).

These five tips are a just a condensed selection of the best practices you should follow when it comes to website design. To learn more, you can download the e-book “How to Prepare for an Upcoming Website Redesign Project”.





Download our web accessibility handbook- Click this image




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by Aske Denning
May 28th
2015

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