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If you have an existing website and are thinking of rebuilding, I am going to share with you the biggest mistake most people make and how to avoid it.

But first, let’s talk about the Boston road system.

There were so many cattle that they built natural cattle herds where the cows would move from place to place while they grazed.

When it came time to find the city and lay down the streets and alleys, the city planners simply opened up the roads directly to the cattle tracks. Now what's the problem with that?

Cattle simply go the wrong way. This may be good if you are a cow, but it is a bad way to build a road system for millions of people. And yet, that's what most people do when it comes to making changes to their website.

They just take over their existing website and without thinking, they redesign the exact same structure.

You then close a "new" website with the same old problems.

I have personally worked on over 300 website redesign projects and here is what I have learned to be helpful. There are three main stages in a website project, content category, design phase, and development phase. We will go through each in detail below. But first, we start with a ‘kickoff website’ where we look at your project objectives, understand who is coming to the site, how they got there and agree on a project timeline.

Establish Your Goals

You want to establish your project objectives. What does winning look like? A question I would like to ask my clients is: “Imagine it has been 6 months since the website was launched, and you feel completely happy with your website and the whole building process. What should be done to feel that way? ”

User Personality

To be honest, I don't even like to use the words 'user personas' because it sounds a little weird but I use them to know what I mean. You just want a clear understanding of the different types of people coming to your website and why. I find that many people have a serious problem with this. They think too much or do not really understand the purpose of exercise.

In my business, for example, I have three types of users who come to my site: the head of marketing (who used to start working for the company), a business owner, or a current website manager. Each of those people has completely different goals for the project. The marketing manager is worried about ‘not blowing the wind’ because often this is their first major project with the company, the business owner is focused on how their investment will generate a return and the manager is focused on how we can simplify their lives by solving a particular problem. When you think of 'user personas' think of the problems they are trying to solve.

Traffic Discovery

How do people now get to the website? Many times the client will say "no!" but often that is not true. Just because you don't get a lot of traffic from Google doesn't mean people are coming to your website. I find that clients have a specific strategy that works for them, such as producing eyeballs from tradeshows or using an outgoing sales team. Whatever it is, write it down, because that will affect your makeup. Is your website a lead production tool or a lead conversion tool? You will never know until you understand how you are currently creating traffic.

Time line

When it comes to periods of time, I would focus more on the whole process than at some point. If you want to know, here is an example of a sample time period. You are welcome to make a copy and use it for your project. The truth is, clients almost never stick to the timeline. There are too many unknown variables out of your control that will affect the project. The best advice I can give on time is to get your content right. Content is bottled for all projects. So make sure you have someone dedicated to the project part. Otherwise your six-week web design project could end up taking 6 months.