After 6 long years of having the same look, for the first time our website went through a total facelift. Let me walk you through its major changes. We consolidated the initial two front page contents into one page, and rearranged the scattered icons in a more orderly manner. We also adopted SEO (Search Engine Optimization) concept and integrated its elements holistically.
Our website never had a conventional structure that incorporated our company profile as one of the major features, even when its appearance was minimalistic. When we first started the simple look, I even calculated to reduce the total wording for the front page just like Google’s striped bare search page. I also removed the lengthy company achievements, investors’ relationships and the content I felt was unnecessary. I wanted the website to be a fully useful and straightforward e-commerce site. And I did all these for another reason: to reduce the burden of translations for our multilingual contents.
My SEO consultant friend who is famous in his profession once reminded me that our website was not SEO-enabled. After I explained the rational, he agreed that our website should stay as it is. The unconventional design had attracted more customers than what I had expected. We prosper in business, and I attributed the success to the practicality of the webpage and its component sites.
Unlike many B2B websites that focus more on resellers and particularly sales but with minimum support, our major efforts went into technical support for resellers, and it has been extended to the end-users as well.
Our contents swelled over the years. More functional icons were created. The initial simplified design could no longer accommodate our advancement, resulted in some new icons landed on unsuitable spots. It had also becoming difficult to keep pace with various translations. And to maintain simplicity on the first page, we have to expand to the second page. But it had cost users a few more clicks to get to the target. Eventually our website’s concept of simplicity had lost its original appeal. The worse part is, this is just the present, how about two years down the road when our contents doubled?
Hence, the restructuring of our website became inevitable in our case. This time, we had to embark in a different direction. We had to fix the existing weaknesses. We had to sacrifice some ideologies. We had to consider conventional wisdom. But we still have to uphold the ultimate objective of providing sufficient service to the resellers and end users. The consolidation and restructuring should help us enhance our objective to a greater extent.
In the process of creating a new front page, we debated endlessly about the new order - what would be primary, and what should be secondary? What would be the buttons with reduced point size, and what should be kept as icons? What would be in the drop-down menu, and what should take center stage? We had brainstormed extensively to come up with this new look. And Tamy Phoon, who has been assigned to head this revamping project, had, and still has to take care of the SEO efforts at every turn taken.
Replacing the old with something new is always an excuse for pride. But for a website that had done so much for us and carried a houseful of meanings and oversaw the growth of our brand, I felt nostalgic for the farewell too.
by Teh Hon Seng, CEO, FingerTec HQ
by Teh Hon Seng, CEO, FingerTec HQ