The Biggest Challenge of Website Redesigns

A few weeks ago I wrapped up a significant user experience (UX) and wireframing effort for a large brand’s e-commerce site. My client was their agency, who was tasked with an overhaul of their website.

As most people know, overhauls aren’t necessary in most cases (In fact, John Peele and I launched a whole service around this premise called Re:work). However, in this instance, a teardown and redo was the right call. Here’s why:

  1. The business’ goals have changed dramatically
  2. The customer’s behaviors have changed
  3. The website’s content wasn’t consistent with the brand’s architecture and standards

These major buckets (plus a dozen subcategories) made the case for investing the immense amount of time and money it costs to do a redesign right.

My job was to work with the content strategist and account team to align the information architecture with the new brand strategy and build wireframes (desktop and mobile) to improve the user’s experience in using the new site. This means making the website easy to use and organized in a way that makes it painless for them to make a purchase or find a store.

The biggest challenges were making the customer’s complex buying journeys simple and keeping the retail channel partners happy.

Rebuilds at this scale are always difficult because so many stakeholders and customers have a vested interest in the website. You have the brand’s goals at stake (i.e. sales, leads, awareness). Inside the brand are business groups that have their own KPIs to reach. And let’s not forget about channel partners and customers, they have goals too.

Whew! That’s a lot of people to please.