When it comes to designing a website, the work is never done. Even once your brand new website has launched there will always be elements that need to be updated, upgraded, and fixed over time to keep the design in optimal condition. Whether it is something small like the graphics and buttons used on your website—or more significant features such as the layout structure or color scheme of the whole domain—there are some regular elements of the website's design that should be routinely checked and maintained. Here are some to keep in mind:
1. Check All Your Images & Graphics
The most basic thing you can do to maintain the design of your website is to simply check each design element on every page and make sure they are still working as intended on an annual basis. Go to your website's sitemap and open every page to do the following:
- Check for broken images and graphics
- Play around with color schemes, button shapes and graphics to see what gets more clicks
- Resize the image file where necessary to maintain the page loading speed
It also pays to make sure your library of images and graphics are organized and backed up properly so you have everything quickly and easily accessible if there is an emergency and you need to rebuild the page or website.
2. Make Sure The Design Works On Every Device
As technology has evolved, so have the different ways with which people can interact with your website. It's not just a desktop computer at home, now there are laptops and tablets and smartphones that allow people to access your website when and how they want. So not only should you have each type of user in mind when designing your website, you should also do some routine checks for each type of device page for the following:
- Make sure every image still looks good when resized for tablets and phones and aren't pixelated or too small to see
- Consider shortening up content and removing unnecessary design elements on mobile
- Test different graphic and button designs on different devices as user behavior varies across different devices
You can also track the percentage of users that view your website on each type of device to determine where you should prioritize your design. If you find that your website now has more mobile users than PC users where a year or two before it was the opposite, you should switch your investment of time and design to focus on the mobile version of your site.
3. Update The Design As Needed
In time, all design trends eventually fade away. The problem is when the design of your website has faded away so badly that your website can act as a time capsule for a bygone era of the internet. Every year or even every few months, you should be reviewing both individual parts of your website's design as well as the website as a whole for the following:
- Make sure the graphics, images, color schemes etc are still relevant and not completely out of style
- Research the latest studies in website behavior trends to make sure your website is styled to convert
- Consider doing a complete overhaul of your website design if it is too out of date
The biggest problem with websites that have an obviously out of date design is that people are more likely to quickly leave your website as they will not trust that your business is in touch enough to provide what the visitor wants. You want to make sure your website helps your business fulfill its goals, which means it has to stay in style enough to attract and retain customers.