You have a website, but is your website helping your business grow? Does it adequately showcase your mission, your services, your products, your WHY? Can clients get a GOOD representation of your business and what it’s like to work with you?
Big one: Will a potential client choose you based on what they see within your website?
Long gone are the days when it was sufficient to just own a website. With information so readily available, users are more savvy and picky. Meaning brands and businesses are competing for their attention more. Hence, it’s imperative that you maintain and keep your website fresh and in line with recent design trends, technological advancements, and search engine algorithms.
Check out the following 12 reasons why your website may need a revamp (listed in no particular order). Also, make sure to check out our recent projects and reach out if your site is in need of a revamp.
1. It’s not memorable & standing out
Does everyone’s website look the same in your area? Be memorable, stand out and stay ahead of the competition.
But also keep in mind: Memorable does not mean flashy. A single page website can say and offer a lot more to a visitor than an over-the-top show, or jam-packed maze of navigation.
2. Outdated content
You may think it’s okay, but a user will quickly pick up on the freshness and reliability of the copy on your site. Whether it be about your business in general, the services you offer, or the resources you are providing. Keep your content fresh and rotating based on recent market trends, your audience shifts, and the general times. For example, your website might be TOO content heavy. Maybe that worked before. But no longer are users willing to read and sift through pages of content to find what they are looking for. Simple, short, and sweet is the way to go today.
What about dead links? Not only does this reflect poorly in the eyes of Google (read on), it can turn a user off if they have taken the time to invest in your content and resources only to be sent to a dead end.
3. It doesn’t reflect your brand
Your website promotes you 24/7 in the online world.
Even if you make only minimal changes to your brand, it’s worth revisiting your website and tailoring it to reflect them. This will help you, among other things, to attract your visitors’ attention to these changes.
This is even more important when you’re introducing changes to your business strategy. Your website is the face of your brand and the first thing potential customers will notice about you. It’s vital for this face to always be in sync with your business.
4. No clear call to action (CTA)
One of the most common design mistakes is a lack of a clear call to action. Things like “contact us”, “shop now”, “watch video”, “sign up”, etc. are important for driving potential customers further down the buying funnel. These elements will encourage them to take an action that will benefit your business.
Getting traffic to your site is nice, but it doesn’t mean much if people leave without taking any meaningful action.
5. Outdated design
Design trends change often. If you don’t keep your eye on design trends, you’ll start losing customers in no time. Or you’ll stop attracting new ones, which, depending on your business, can be even worse.
Design trends aren’t only about color themes and shapes. Although global preferences change in these directions as well, website design is about so much more. For example, in recent years, we’ve been moving towards uncluttering our lives, and that’s been reflected in web design: Cleaner and more straightforward websites are all the rage.
You’ll also notice a shift away from movement. When done right, video slideshows and headers are eye-catching and can draw a user into your story. The same stands true for simple movement while scrolling. But too many moving parts, such as graphics, excess pop-ups, changing backgrounds, slide-in content, etc. may not have the effect you’re hoping for.
6. Outdated technology and security
If your website was built over 2 years ago, most likely it’s far behind in terms of functionality on top of design. It probably has outdated code that can slow down loading speed or the way it responds on different devices - if it’s even mobile friendly to being with. It also may not be compatible with some of the latest popular browsers.
CMS (i.e. Wordpress, Joomla, Squarespace) platforms have significantly improved and offer better tools for you to build and manage your website. You’ll be surprised how many possibilities have come to life since your last website revamp.
Using aging plugins that seldom - if ever - get updated can hurt the overall functionality of your website. It can also be a security threat; as technology ages, it gets replaced with newer and more secure versions, security features that your site will be missing out on. By updating your back-end technology, you can make sure that your site is secure while also impressing your visitors.
7. Mobile friendly
If your “mobile” website leaves visitors having to pinch and zoom to see anything, cuts of content or images, or simply does not allow your visitor to adequately use your site - it is not an optimal experience!
A responsive website changes the layout to offer an experience based on the device being used, especially ideal for mobile viewing. A mobile responsive website includes design elements such as: readable text without requiring zoom, adequate space for tap targets, and no horizontal scrolling.
Remember over 60% of website traffic is now via mobile devices. You can be sure that your users are going to view your site on a mobile device at some point. It’s even more likely that it’s going to be the first interaction they have with your site if they are checking you out via Facebook or Instagram.
Keep in mind that Google also factors in a website’s mobile presence as a ranking signal.
8. Website load speed
Aim for a loading time under 5 seconds. If you’re not sure how quickly your site loads, use tools like Pingdom or GTmetrix to check how long it takes for your site to load, and which files are the troublemakers. Poor results could mean you have some work to do. Slow loading speed could be caused by a number of reasons: heavy unoptimized images, underpowered hosting and even an old, poorly performing theme.
As with most factors, Google factors in your website load speed as a ranking signal.
9. Your bounce rate is high
This is extremely important. If you’ve been pouring your heart and time into SEO and a marketing strategy, bringing a lot of traffic to your website, but the second they access your homepage (or any other page), they bounce right off of it – you have a problem.
You’re losing leads and potential clients.
A high bounce rate indicates that you’re doing something wrong with content, navigation, or overall look and feel on your website. On average, a bounce rate between 40-60% is considered to be OK (this varies depending on your industry).
You can check your bounce rate via Google Analytics.
10. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine’s (i.e. Google) are king in your digital marketing strategy.
Let’s start with the basics. A blog. It’s a powerful marketing tool to drive more traffic and users your way, through keywords (assuming that you invest time into a proper SEO and keyword strategy), internal links and back links.
You also need to know that search engines love fresh content. Every time you make an update to your site - not just blogs, but the copy all around. Google and other search engines crawl and index your pages, recalculating your site. If you keep your content updated and in GOOD QUALITY, you increase your chances of getting noticed.
And it’s important to take into account the quality of content and your SEO strategy. Regularly updated but poor content can be your downfall, both with visitors and with search engines. For example, it’s widely known that Google’s algorithm can lower the rankings of websites in search results for keyword stuffing (overloading text with keywords that lack proper context) and for low-quality or repeated content.
11. Non user-friendly navigation
Poor navigation is one of the main reasons why a website loses its customers. This is true even if your website is visually appealing and has great, relevant content. A user should be able to easily find the WHY and the HOW of your site and why they came to it. They should also be able to easily flow from page to page, without getting lost in a maze of navigation, sub-pages, hidden pages, and round-about links.
Poor sitemap structure also makes it difficult for search engines to crawl a site which will impact your rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs).
12. Not optimized for Google (beyond SEO)
A big sign that you need to update your website is if it wasn’t designed with search engines in mind. If Google can’t easily index your site, you likely won’t be showing up on the first page of search results. If your customers can’t find you, then they’ll likely go with whatever business is showing up at or near the top, as these companies are seen as more legitimate by many people.
Attention to all of the factors above plays into optimization.
It All Matters
Everything comes down to user experience.
It might not seem like a big issue at first glance: So what if your e-commerce website was built in 2015? You’re constantly updating your product listings; isn’t that enough?
Well, it isn’t. Not in today’s highly competitive online market. Whether you have a big corporate website or a blog for your personal brand, to stay competitive, your site needs to keep up with the times in terms of both looks and functionality.
In short, the importance of keeping a website up to date is this: With the majority of people spending more and more time online, regular updates that are well executed can help your business grow and lift it to the top; a lack of updates, consequently, can bring you down.
How We Can Help
The point of this article was not to convince you to update your website just for the sake of changing. While a website redesign is an important and demanding process, which requires some time and effort – think about the reason you got a website in the first place. It exists to promote your work, help customers get to know you as a brand and creative personality, as well as get them excited to work with you!
So how often should you redesign your website? A good rule of thumb: 1.5 to 2.5 years or so. Longer than that and it faces the danger of falling into oblivion. Using new technologies can bring many benefits to your website and your business, help you attract new customers, and eventually increase your profits.
Keep in mind: You should ALWAYS be reworking pages to improve conversions and provide a better user experience.
And we are here to help and guide you through the process.
We put much thought and expertise into each of our products, to create beautiful and powerful tools to help you build a website worthy of your work and vision.
All of our websites are created with the elements on this list (and more!) in mind. Want to see what we’ve done in the past? Have a look at some of the websites we’ve designed here.
Ready for yours?