You want to spice things up with a major overhaul of your site, right?

Wrong.

Huge website redesigns can be a very dangerous online business strategy. The best way to go? Continuous improvement.

Gradually making fixes and corrections to meet the needs of your customers – focusing on their most-used tasks – is a far better way to keep those customers happy.

People are resistant to big changes – drastic changes disorient users and create a learning curve. Better to address specific navigation, content or aesthetic concerns on an as-needed basis, so you don’t shock your users into oblivion.

Some organizations are obsessed with the concept of redesign, and do so on a regular basis, fearing their “look and feel” is getting stale. But studies show the only thing wearing thin is users’ patience with companies that seem to feel the need to rearrange the virtual furniture ever few months or years.

Yes, a fresh look can be a good thing, but design alterations should be undertaken for the right reasons – such as something important has been shown through analytics or customer feedback to be dysfunctional, or perhaps the company has undergone a complete rebranding effort and needs to make sure their web presence is compliant with the new branding guidelines.

Granted, it can be harder to measure the effect of incremental changes versus a big redesign, but that’s not a good reason to upturn the applecart. It’s preferable to manage what is right to measure, rather than falling back on managing what is easy to measure.

One good reason to engage in continuous improvement is that it is extremely difficult to get everything right in one huge redesign project. It’s much better to make little changes and test them than to flip a switch and hope that a million changes are all going to function in harmony.  This is especially true if you have a very complex website with lots of web pages.

Another good reason to take it slow is that continuous improvement can deliver true value. By making minor changes, we can efficiently show that a little effort can go a long way. Focused, surgical edits are preferable to a shotgun approach to quality and process improvement.

At eLegal.org, we can do grand-scale facelifts or offer you the gentle touch approach, making just the changes and nudges that will keep your customers happy (and coming back!) without alienating them. And who doesn’t want return customers?