Every business owner realises that their website is an important part of their business. After all, the first contact your prospective customers have is with your website when they are looking for your services.
However, the web is evolving rapidly and your old site might not be keeping up with the times. Whether your website was developed a decade ago, you’re looking for a modern design or you want your website to be mobile friendly, a website redesign is not a small task. It calls for preparation.
Here’s a checklist that will help you prepare for your website redesign.
Analyse Your Goals
Every project should start with a goal in mind. The same holds true for your website redesign project. Evaluate your current site. Why do you want a redesign? Why is now the appropriate time for it?
Create a list of things you want from your new website.
Carry Out a Content Audit
Assess the current content on your site. Do you want to keep most of this content? How much of the content stays and how much of it will be discarded? What new content would you require?
Content helps with your rankings, branding and it even helps your visitors. So do not simply discard all your existing content. However, this is a good time to remove all the fluffy stuff.
As part of your content audit, analyse each page on the site to determine what will be removed and what will be kept.
Also bear in mind that a lot of your URLs are on the web – on emails, other sites and on social channels. When transferring to a new website, ensure that the current URLs are considered.
Create a New Sitemap
Now that the content audit is done, it’s time to create a new sitemap.
A sitemap is essentially a list of pages on your site. It will help you in visualizing what your new site would look like, where would all the content go in the redesign.
Identify Your Target Audience
This is an important step. After all, every element on your website – the website copy, the images, the navigation and the features – will depend on your target audience is.
A website aimed at doctors would be different from a website aimed at plumbers.
Take a deep look into your analytics to get an insight into your visitors. Identify where your visitors are coming from. For instance, if they are landing on your site from email, you want to create a high-impact landing page.
Assess Your Competition
A competitor analysis will help you to understand what your competitors are doing and how they are positioning themselves on the web. Analyse what you like and don’t like about your competitors’ sites. Of course, you don’t want to simply copy your competition.
Hire the Right Web Design Agency
Once you’ve prepared for your website redesign, it’s time to hire the right web design agency. At LS25 Web Design, we provide professional web design services across the UK at affordable prices. Get in touch with us today for a free website audit and consultation.
Several factors come into play when it comes to choosing a web host. However, the size of the host shouldn’t be one of them. Big is not always better. Let’s see why.
A small hosting service can provide a lot of personal attention.
Big brand hosting companies handle hundreds of thousands of clients. This can bring in complacency, which can affect the commitment level of the staff.
When the team has a lot on its plate, they may not be completely committed to every customer given that a lot of customers are vying for their attention.
On the other hand, a small hosting company is able to provide every customer personalised attention. Because they have fewer clients, they can focus on meeting the client’s needs.
Small hosting companies are popular irrespective of their size because they are able to offer what big hosts cannot.
A boutique hosting company does not have a large corporate hierarchy, and the entire team works together to achieve one goal – customer satisfaction.
Larger agencies, on the other hand, are muddled by corporate hierarchy, politics, job descriptions, systems, targets and more.
The bigger the company, the bigger are its overheads. This will eventually reflect in their pricing, and result in higher pricing. With small hosting agencies, you are able to get the most value for every penny you pay
As a small business, the hosting company is looking to generate sales and would be happy to offer its services at a small margin.
Whether you are looking to cut costs or are simply looking for the best value hosting, a small hosting company can come really handy.
A small hosting company would go to any lengths to provide a solid customer experience. They are willing to go the extra mile. However, larger hosting companies have a huge process and system in place that can really slow things down. So when you have a support request, you are in no mood to wait for a day to receive a response. A small hosting company will be able to offer timely and quick response time for all your queries and complaints.
Whether you are looking to lower the hosting costs or are looking for a smooth experience, choosing a small hosting company can make all the difference. Large hosts are too busy to take care of every small need you might have.
At LS25 Web Hosting, we provide nationwide hosting services and provide our services to some of the top brands across the UK. Get in touch with us today for more information.
The URL structure is an important part of a good SEO strategy. However, given that it’s a tiny thing, it’s not a huge priority for most. The URL is the first thing your visitors see. It plays a huge role in creating a good impression. Here, we look at four benefits of keeping your URLs short and optimising the URL structure.
You must have come across websites with really long URLs that made you suspect it’s a spam site, even though it was a normal website. Websites with long URLs stuffed with strange characters look really spammy. A clean and short URL, on the other hand, gives out the feeling that it’s trustworthy and authoritative.
Ensure that every URL on your website passes the readability test. Read it aloud. Does the URL sound complicated? Does the URL give a clue about the content of the page?
The URL structure has an impact on your website’s rankings in the search engines. Although it’s not a direct signal for ranking, it has the SEO juice that can influence your ranking in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
For instance, when you include your keyword in the URL, Google and your readers know what the page is about. However, avoid stuffing in all your keywords in a URL. Use your target keyword in the shortened URLs.
Easy Site Growth
As your website grows, you may have to add more pages, categories and sections across the site. When you shorten and simplify the URL structure, site expansion and navigation becomes a breeze.
Long, complicated URLs make the crawling difficult for the search bots.
When your URLs are short and simple, growing your site also becomes easy.
Sharing is Easy with Short URLs
Short URLs make the job of social sharing easy for your visitors. Just visualize how a long-winding and complicated URL will look like when shared on social media and email? Not only will it look weird, a long URL is difficult to memorise.
Which of the two links below are you highly likely to share?
www.example.com/web-design-agency or www.example.com/web-design-agency/pagetwo.xflp=p8
In all likelihood, you’d prefer sharing the first link.
Simplify Things with a Short URL Structure
Improving the URL structure of your website might look like a cumbersome task, but it’s not that difficult. Be practical and logical, and things will become easier. We hope that this brief guide has helped you in understanding why short URL structures are better for you, your SEO and your visitors.
For any information about our web design service, get in touch with us today.
Website speed plays an important role in improving traffic and conversions on your site. In fact, a majority of the Internet users expects a website to load quickly. In fact, every one-second delay in load time reduces your conversions by 7%.
Given that people have a very short attention span, it is important to ensure your site loads quickly. Here are some ways to improve your website load time.
When a visitor lands on your site, the site will load up all the images. Your web design agency knows this. As an experienced web design agency, we usually resize all images that we use as part of your website development.
However, the problem arises when you upload you’re the images yourself. If you don’t usually resize the images before uploading to your WordPress (or any other CMS) website for example, your site may have very huge pictures that could potentially slow the load time.
You can resize your image using Photoshop, Paint or bulk image resizing software. Here at LS25 Web Design, we use the leading WordPress image optimisation tools.
When you want a quick loading site, be sure to activate browser caching. With browser caching enabled, some of the downloadable files will be stored in the visitor’s browser. When the visitor visits your site again, the site will load faster.
Browser caching not only helps reduce the load time, but it also lowers the bandwidth usage for you as well as your visitors.
Host Videos on External Platforms
This is a handy tip if you are looking to add videos to your site.
Let’s say you want to add an intro video on your homepage.
Videos not only take a lot of hosting space, they can really slow your site down when multiple users are trying to access the same video.
Instead of uploading it to your site, consider uploading videos to external hosting platforms such as YouTube or Vimeo and embed the video on your website.
Choose a Reliable Hosting Service
We can’t emphasise enough the importance of choosing the right hosting plan and service. Choose a plan that’s right for your requirements and choose a company that guarantees 99.9% uptime. Don’t be blown away by hype, brand or offers. We pride ourselves in provide exceptionally reliable hosting to our customers, backed up with fantastic customer support.
If you are struggling with a slow loading website, consider our free site consultation. We can help you find the issues and even provide an action plan to help fix the issues. Get in touch with LS25 Web Design today.
You’ve decided to build a website for your business. You’ve given it a thought and you’ve realised the benefits of having an online presence. So the next step is to choose a domain name, hire a web design agency and choose a hosting service.
Given that there are several web hosts in the market - from small companies to big-brand players - how do you choose a web hosting company?
A recent study suggests that companies around the world prefer to use the services of local web hosts, and with good reason. Let’s take a look at the benefits of choosing a local web hosting company.
Local hosts are able to provide a personalised service. Whether you have a support request or a clarification, your phone call is directed to a customer support staff instead of a complex IVR loop. Your emails are answered swiftly and promptly without any delay.
A big-brand host, on the other hand, will not be able to provide such personalised customer support. Given that they are flooded by enquiries, they won’t be able to give each customer so much attention.
Speed and Performance
When you choose a local host, you benefit from better speed and performance. A locally hosted website is thrice as fast when compared to a website that’s hosted with an international host.
Because the web servers are located closer to home, your site will load faster. The closer your host is located from your website visitors, the faster is the load time.
Several hosting companies from America have a worldwide presence. However, their servers are located in their home country. This is of significance especially if your target market is the UK. With your host further from your visitors, your website’s speed and performance is affected.
When it comes to hosting your website, uptime is a major consideration. More important that is the customer support. In the unfortunate event that something goes wrong and your website goes offline, you want to work with a company that can offer quick and prompt support.
As a local web hosting service, LS25 Web Hosting offers reliable and prompt customer support to all our customers. Whether you have a question or a support request, we are happy to serve you and respond to your questions quickly.
Contact Us Today
Get in touch with us today and benefit from all the advantages of working with a local web hosting service.
Passwords have become a part of our lives. Anything you on the Internet requires a password. Of course, it makes sense given the increasing instances of cyber attacks. With websites getting hacked in a variety of ways, having a hack-proof password for your website is very important.
Generic passwords like abcd1234, 123456, your mother’s maiden name or your birthday won’t help. Anything that can be guessed easily isn’t a good password. Here are some tips to help you create a strong password for your website.
Get the Basics Right
In addition to avoiding the passwords discussed above, there are several things you can do to strengthen your password. Your password should have:
Do What Gamers Do
Usernames are taken quickly in the online world. This forces users to become creative with their usernames. People generally use letters, random numbers or misspellings to get the username they want.
You could apply this strategy to your password too.
For instance, you could use ‘3’ to replace ‘E’ or ‘0’ in place of ‘O. Misspellings are another great way to create an identity that’s close to the one you want. Add an extra ‘A’ or change a ‘Z’ to “S’.
Say someone gets their hands on your personal information including the password. What then? That’s where multi-factor authentication can come really handy. Multi-factor authentication helps verify your account when accessed from a new/unrecognised device.
If there’s an activity that seems suspicious, you receive an email/message to alert you about the login. A lot of businesses these days use multi-factor authentication to secure their clients’ information. Consider doing this for your website and wherever possible.
So in the unfortunate event that someone cracks your password, you’ll receive a notification immediately, so you can reset the password and keep hackers away from your account.
When it comes to website security, never leave things to chance. Put extra effort to create strong passwords. After all, your passwords keep your information and website safe from the prowling eyes of intruders and hackers.