Migrating or redesigning a website can be a boon to any online business and their users. When doing so, there is ample opportunity to target and ameliorate issues that might be plaguing your users’ experience when navigating your site. Of course, data migration and site redesign can likewise be paths fraught with peril.

Make a mistake in your redesign and you’ll risk alienating users. When customers begin to feel like their experience isn’t being taken into consideration, you’ll lose traffic and revenue and risk alienating investors as well.

Many businesses make similar mistakes when it’s time to migrate, re-platform or redesign. As the owner of a digital marketing agency, I’ve overseen several site redesigns and migrations, experiencing all of the happy accidents and (not so happy accidents) that can occur. Below is a guide to help you navigate the process.

Deciding On Your Redesign

Reasons for redesign are fairly commonplace: Early mistakes in the development process often prove too daunting to fix due to time and/or finances. Create a highly strategized plan for overhaul. Focus on specific problems with UX or UI instead of redesigning simply because the site seems outmoded. Keep in mind that users may have simply wanted a few broken pieces fixed instead of a new experience. A whole new experience may be difficult or frustrating for returning or regular users to navigate.

Likewise, it may be difficult for search engines to crawl, index and rank pages that have gone through extensive updates or have been moved completely without attention paid to SEO.