Your website is your online shopfront. Your business card on the web. Besides looking good, it needs to be easy to navigate and above all, bring in the sales.
A successful website needs to keep up with technology and design to not fall behind your competition. If your website doesn't meet standard requirements, it is time to look at getting a new website.
This article will help you decide if you require a website redesign.
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Signs your website needs a redesign
1. Your site is not mobile-friendly
72% of people have access to the internet via a smartphone. This means that a big chunk of your website traffic comes from mobile phones, with some tablet traffic in the mix as well. In 2019 Google announced that it will be indexing and ranking websites using the mobile version of websites. So a mobile site is necessary for rankings AND users.
From June 2016 to June 2017, mobile internet usage increased by 104% in New Zealand. With this trend continuing, your site has to be easy to view and navigate on both desktop and mobile. The easiest way to do that is with a responsive website design. This kind of website adjusts content to fit a variety of screen sizes.
2. Your site doesn't look good
Users have seen numerous websites by now, and it has been proven that people would rather spend time on a site that is thoroughly designed than something plain. Website design is a deciding factor in the credibility of a business. A professional website decreases bounce rates and increases the likelihood of a sale. Looking good is valuable!
3. Your site speed is slow
Users want quality information - quickly. If a website loads for longer than a few seconds, users are simply leaving. Speeding up your site is crucial.
4. Your website ranks poorly on Google
Looking good is only valuable if you rank well. There are numerous factors that impact where you rank on search results.
Google evaluates your page’s quality and then decides where you rank on the search engine results page (SERP). If you aren't ranking well, a good place to start optimizing is your site’s structure, functionality and design. If you can't figure out why your site is ranking poorly, a full redesign can help you rank better.
5. Your conversion rate is low
Getting people to the website is great, but turning visitors into leads and sales is greater. When you design your website, keep in mind who your user is and what they are trying to accomplish. Then make it as easy as possible for them to find the information they require to meet their goals and needs. The most important information should be the easiest to find. Position contact details and purchase options obvious.
6. Your branding has changed
The branding on your website has to be consistent with your business's overall branding. Communicate your brand identity on every platform you are using. This will help your customers recognize and remember you. Thought through branding has proven to build trust.
7. Updating your website content is difficult
If you find updating your website difficult or complicated, it's time to find a new content management system (CMS). The CMS is a tool to update your website and keep the content fresh and relevant. It also enables you to tweak pages for SEO. It is meant to make your life easier, not harder! Up to date content is great for users that want your latest information, and signals search engines that your site is legitimate and active. A redesign in a user-friendly CMS is hugely beneficial, saving you time and money in the long run.
8. Your website is not consistent
Has your website been around for a few years? Have several people had their hands on it? That often leads to pages being inconsistent with each other.
Maybe your CMS limits what you can do? Maybe your website hasn’t kept up with the trends and advances? This can make your site appear confusing and disorganized.
Starting fresh with a brand-new website design can eliminate these issues and create consistency throughout your site’s pages.
9. You've outgrown your site
Your business keeps evolving, and so should your website.
Have added or removed products? Do you offer new services? Has your focus shifted? Your website needs to reflect that.
A few years ago the goal of your website might have been for people to call you but now you prefer your clients filling in a contact form that helps you prepare proposals. Your site needs to reflect where you are now.
10. Your industry has evolved
Technology advances. The needs of your customers change. New products and services become available every day. New competitors emerge. Tweaking your website may be all you need for improvement. Sometimes the only way to get the results you’re after is a whole new website. If your site has been the same for more than five years you definitely need a redesign to keep up with your competition and the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
11. Your website isn't secure
Website security is something that has been in the news frequently, with breaches of big international sites like Facebook and Tū Ora Compass Health in New Zealand. By installing an SSL certificate on your website, you are encrypting information that you send between a browser and a web server. This protects your website’s users from attacks like credit card information or logins. A website that is not secure, is also going to rank lower as Google penalizes non-secure sites. It is in your best interest to secure your data, and protect your customers. If your website is not secure, you should get this done as soon as possible.
How often should I redesign my website?
This is a highly subjective question. There are many factors to consider. Orbit Media discovered that the average lifespan of a site is about two years and seven months. If your site is older than that, you need to start thinking about a redesign. For future planning, you should budget for website redesigning and development every two to three years.
Why do small businesses need a website?
If you’re not entirely convinced a website is beneficial, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Credibility: Customers expect a business to have a website. A company that doesn't, will appear to be less professional and trustworthy.
- Potential customers: Your customers are online. This is where they find you. They might be searching (for you) right now making purchase decisions based on what they find.
- Information: People visit your website to get information about you. They expect to find out who you are, what you do and offer, and how to contact you easily and quickly.
- Data collection: You can collect data about your customers. You’ll know where they are and how they found you. This can make marketing to your targets a lot easier. Plus it will help you direct your resources to the most effective marketing channels.
- Money saving: Paying staff to do what a website can do for you is much more expensive. Think of your website as your marketing, sales, and reception team member. It will free up time for your staff because they don't have to spend as much time and effort preparing proposals, making sales calls and answering the same questions again and again.