In this part of the Website Redesign Guide, we’re going to discuss your web content including text, images and video.
A few notes about content types
Let’s start with written content. Think about the existing copy you have on your site. Again, like we’ve mentioned before, make sure you keep content that’s doing well. You also need to think about the words that link to pages on your site. A lot of times, these links will get wiped out during a migration and it causes search optimization headaches down the road.
For image content, there are a few questions you should ask yourself in order to determine what you should do with the images on your existing website:
- What kind of image content needs to be migrated to the new design?
- Are there important testimonials with client or customer images we definitely need to have?
- Are there a lot of photo galleries on the new site?
You need a plan for migrating these images to the new design.
Whereas 99 percent of all websites contain text and images, not all websites have video — or at least not a lot of it. But, maybe you have a real estate website that has video walkthroughs of properties, or, maybe you have learning courses on your site. How will you display these videos and where will they be hosted? If you have a lot of media-heavy content, you may need to consider finding a new web hosting company or upgrading your plan.
Creating New Content for a New Website
In addition to the existing content you want to migrate to your redesigned website, you want to think about new content. For example, a goal of the new design may be using case studies to showcase client work.
Start by thinking about everything that would go into this new content. Case studies, for example, would include text. You would also need testimonials from clients, and possibly even images of clients and their companies’ logos.
Some other items you could include in case studies are as follows:
- Images of products you worked on
- Images of team members involved
- Video testimonials from clients
- Specific metrics or facts
Writing the case study isn’t the hardest part. Getting everything together and organized often is. Think about the challenges you will face with new content and plan accordingly.
Merging Existing Content to Create Better Content
An alternative to getting rid of content is to merge it, especially if you have a lot of existing pages that aren’t performing well. With those pages, you can create entirely new pieces of content.
First, think about what kind of new resources you could create by merging multiple poor performing pages. This is a very common thing search engine optimization pros will do. They’ll find a lot of related topics out of a handful of pieces of content, and merge them to create one new larger, more robust piece of content.
One difference, however, is this new, more in-depth piece of content will answer multiple questions instead of having a lot of smaller pieces of content that only cover the surface level of a topic.
Merging content may also happen naturally. If your company is consolidating services, for example, you can easily merge multiple ideas together into a new, more inclusive idea.
Common Content-related Issues
Here are common content issues we see during the redesign of a website.
Lack of resources
Before you move forward with a website redesign, it’s important to nail down who’s going to actually do the writing and who’s going to create — or source — images and video. Companies frequently run into problems answering this question in the process of redesigning their website: “Who’s going to actually make this content?”
If you don’t have employees to take on the work, getting outside help needs to be factored into your budget. Things like stock photo websites are OK for sourcing some images and video, but if the content doesn’t fit into your redesign because you’re going for something a bit more customized you’ll need to pay a designer or media company to do it for you.
This is something that only needs to be considered if you don’t have the adequate resources to migrate your existing content and create new content internally. And, when hiring a company to help with the redesign, make sure you’re filling positions you don’t already have.
Removal of text
An overall lack of text is another issue we see companies run into when they redesign their websites. This happens when companies decide to move toward a more image-heavy or video-heavy site, and a lot of the text is removed. But text is essential for showing up in search engine results and removing it can reduce visits to your website from search engines.