Before & After: 11 Exceptional Website Redesigns

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The list of reasons for a website redesign includes different concerns and objectives for every enterprise, but designers and developers certainly know that outdated and clunky websites that are not search engine, user and mobile friendly should top the list.

Companies also turn to their in-house design teams or outside agencies to take advantage of third-party integrations and emerging trends and best practices, as you'll read below. Here are 11 exceptional website redesigns for your inspiration. 

Vienna Beef

Agency: Orbit Media

When Vienna Beef wanted to create a progressive website that showcases its store and core values, the iconic brand turned to Chicago’s Orbit Media, a Web design and development firm. Vienna Beef benefited from having a dedicated project manager, Christa Vrabel, and designer, Kurt Cruse. The goals of the project were: to improve the ease-of-use for mobile users; to modernize the e-commerce storefront for both desktop and mobile users; to highlight the Chipico, Bistro and Minaret brands; to create an easy-to-update back-end; to enable the brand to track visits to the site; and for the Web property to develop long-term relationships by keeping the site fresh. 

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FromYouFlowers.com

From You Flowers successfully launched a site redesign for FromYouFlowers.com, the culmination of a year's worth of planning and work. The FromYouFlowers.com team knew that there would always be newer technologies and more changes than they could implement in a year’s time. To streamline the process, the executive and marketing teams created a timeline of tasks that must be completed over the course of the site redesign process—and they stuck with it.

"We've never had a change on the site perform so incredibly well on tests as this new site design," said FromYouFlowers.com CEO Mike Chapin. "This was all a result of team effort and staying up with current technology trends, while keeping the customer at the forefront of our minds."

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Direct Insite

Agency: Walker Sands Digital

Direct Insite wanted to give their website a more modern feel, and they hoped to integrate with Salesforce to meet their business objectives. Their new site was launched recently with the new design, and Salesforce integration is expected to be complete within the coming weeks.

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Storflex

Agency: Walker Sands Digital

Storflex's old website was built primarily using Flash, meaning it looked outdated and functioned poorly on several devices. Their new site incorporates a much more contemporary design, and it has been optimized for search engines to allow them to better compete against other businesses in their industry.

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International Specialty Supply

Agency: Walker Sands Digital

International Specialty Supply (ISS) had a highly search engine optimized website, but it needed a powerful design to match. Through incorporating a modern design and further optimizing key pages on their site, ISS noticed an improvement in sales almost immediately; whereas they had not taken a single order for sprout growing equipment in the six months previous to the redesign, within a month of launching the new site ISS received two orders for a piece of equipment worth $15,000.

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SDI

Agency: Walker Sands Digital

SDI had a number of unique challenges they wanted to meet. Like Storflex, their old website's design relied heavily on Flash, meaning it was not supported across all devices. They also wanted to showcase their company's international presence with a nearly identical version of their site in Turkish. To meet these objectives, Walker Sands built SDI's website to be responsive, meaning it will work on nearly every browser or device. The agency was also able to build out an international section of their website to showcase SDI's presence in Turkey.

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Scout Analytics

The overall look and feel of Scout’s website was updated to represent Scout branding and messaging, and to better position Scout as a leader in the cloud-base recurring revenue management space. There was also improved organization and flow so that content and product information is easily accessible, as well as enhanced navigation to make it easier to move around and peruse the site

Clear calls-to-action both above the fold and below were added to drive visitor engagement and lead generation. The website redesign also leveraged responsive design for optimized viewing on multiple devices (e.g. mobile, table, laptop). 

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Black Diamond Equipment

Agency: Acquity Group

Black Diamond Equipment realized they needed a vastly improved website experience to serve their e-commerce and CMS needs better after going public in 2010 and experiencing year-over-year growth.

Working hand-in-hand with Black Diamond Equipment and their customers, Acquity Group provided brand strategy, user research, prototyping, responsive frameworks and visual design for a dual approach; to showcase Black Diamond’s Equipment’s innovative climbing and outdoor products in the SHOP area, and to provide a rich user experience for Black Diamond Equipment’s voracious community of video watchers, expedition followers and photo posters in the EXPERIENCE section. 

With two distinct, yet seamless paths, blackdiamondequipment.com now generates sales and develops brand affinity with a beautiful responsive site that’s visually stunning and deeply engaging. 

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belkin

Agency: Acquity Group

Belkin is one of the world’s fastest growing companies with more than $1 billion in annual sales. Although Belkin is known for wireless networking solutions, it also offers a diverse product mix that includes lines of mobile accessories, business-class solutions and energy conservation products—all of which share the brand’s core commitment to innovation and relevancy to the everyday lives of modern consumers.

As the company shifted from a primarily B2B sales model to more of a B2C model, the need to develop a closer customer-brand relationship was elevated. Belkin knew it had to offer a rich digital experience that facilitated B2C sales, presented its broad product catalog effectively, and moved Belkin products from a commodities category to must-have consumer items. 

Belkin engaged Acquity Group to help re-imagine the company’s web presence, enabling the brand’s eCommerce experience to be as innovative as Belkin’s products are to consumers. 

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Summit Power

Agency: The Medium

The Medium completed a re-branding and website update for Summit Power in July 2012. The previous Summit site conveyed basic information about the company, but the look and feel didn't reflect the cutting edge nature and personality of this energy development company. Their new identity and website evokes a modern, innovative, and successful aesthetic. The site is built on a fully customized WordPress platform, allowing internal staff to easily update Summit's current projects, site location map, team bios, and other text and images as needed. In addition, an extensive Media section shares recent press releases, articles and events that Summit is involved in.

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Olson's Tack

Agency: The Medium

The Medium created the new Olson's Tack site to serve as an enticing resource for equestrians in the Pacific Northwest Region. The updated site is built on the WordPress platform, which allows staff to easily update dynamic features such as employee profiles, sales and events, a barn directory and an informational blog. The homepage features a Twitter feed and a rotating feature article which pulls from the blog. 

While the old site was static HTML/CSS and couldn't be easily updated, their new site is very dynamic and extremely easy to manage. In addition, The Medium integrated the site with a customized Volusion e-commerce solution so that Olson's can sell their products online. 

"We are very happy with the increased traffic, as well as the better placement on search engines for the specialty equestrian products we carry,” said Olson’s Tack Owner Mike Akers. 

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6 comments

RobertB 06-27-2013 4:12 PM

Man I need HELP!

MikeM 06-27-2013 5:10 PM

    This is a great article. It is sometimes hard for business owners to admit that the website they have spent hundreds or thousands of dollars developing is no longer appropriate for their business needs. With mobile users on the rise, many fancy flash sites (or even sites that use flash for displaying partial content) fall short on delivery. This produces a poor experience for the mobile user and turns them away from that vendor’s website.

    Steve Jobs wrote an excellent article in April, 2010 explaining Apple’s decision to not included Flash support in their popular iPhones, iPods and iPads. Among other reasons cites was the following: “Symantec recently highlighted Flash for having one of the worst security records in 2009. We also know first hand that Flash is the number one reason Macs crash. We have been working with Adobe to fix these problems, but they have persisted for several years now. We don’t want to reduce the reliability and security of our iPhones, iPods and iPads by adding Flash.” (See the full article at www.apple.com/.../thoughts-on-flash)

    Since flash was omitted from these mobile devices for performance and battery usage issues, it is not likely to be resurrected any time soon. Adobe has even announced they will cease development of Flash for mobile devices in favor of HTML5. (See full article at blogs.adobe.com/.../flash-focus.html)

    All this spells out required re-design projects for businesses wanting to capitalize on the rapidly increasing mobile user base out there today.

Jack Kennard 06-28-2013 5:27 AM

Great article, I'd like to see this about once a year, just to stay up on the new technology and what others are doing.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised at large eye catching images at the top with lead ins to major topics on pages.

Also find it interesting to see so many background images on the page, color contrast, how many sites are made with WordPress and expect to see more responsive sites next year.

Nice article Amberly.  

Ty Kilgore 06-28-2013 1:59 PM

This is a great piece of before and after shots. We went through a very simliar process and article like this one were very helpful. Thanks for putting this together for us.

Web Design Firm 07-02-2013 4:49 AM

All the redesigns are very good but I think Vienna Beef wins by a mile.

AmberF 07-09-2013 3:37 PM

I vote for Vienna Beef also.

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