Having understood that owning a website is a must for any business, it’s now time to learn another almost-mandatory thing about websites – they need to be updated fairly regularly. And we aren’t talking about content, mind you. Uploading a couple of blogposts a week is OK to keep it updated for a while, but once enough time has passed, some of its functionalities and the design choices you’ve made will be outdated and in need of a refresh.
Though there aren’t specific rules to how often do you have to update your site, there are some indicators you can search for in your site that will point towards an urgent revamp. Want to know which are they? Answer these questions and you’ll find out soon enough.
Is your site really old?
If your site haven’t gone under some redesign for four years, then it’s time to consider one. Four years on the Internet feel like eons in terms of website design. In that time, the “rules” of user experience, color use, layout structure and general web features change a lot. If your site stays the same way for that much time, it’ll feel old in comparison for most visitors. And do you know what happens when visitors think they are in an outdated site? That’s right – they leave.
Adopt a new theme, change your colors, study your competitors and your field and see what others are doing to understand where are you standing. Adjust everything you need and, while you are at it, be sure to look the backend for broken links and errors, both of which are amazing deal breakers for any visitor.
What about performance?
You’ll know that your site needs to be reworked if you don’t even know if you have an analytical tool in it. These tools are essential to measure your site’s performance and learn all about your visitors’ behavior while on your site. If you do have an analytical tool, then take a look at how your site is doing in number of sessions, pageviews and bounce rate (the percentage of people that arrive to your site and left without visiting any other page). A weak performance speaks volume – poor numbers are the undeniable indicator that your site needs to be reworked.
Don’t understand analytic reports at all? Then you might as well hire an expert to help you out, since you’ll need it to understand the opportunities you’re missing to improve your online business.
Is your site mobile-friendly?
Responsive websites have become hugely important recently – mostly because mobile users have already outnumbered desktop users online. That forced site designers to start going the responsive route. What’s different about responsive websites? That they can automatically adapt their design and functionalities to provide the best experience to visitors using different screens and devices. If your site looks the same in your PC and your smartphone, then you’ll have to redesign it ASAP.
Does your site reflects your business properly?
Even when all of the above questions are covered, you might still be obliged to redesign your site. That can happen when the site has stopped reflecting your business properly. This may sound odd but it happens quite often – new services, new offices, new brand or logo are but some of the things that ask for a quick redesign. Of course, how much you’ll have to redesign vary from case to case. A new location might mean a small change in your contact form but a new logo may bring new colors and a new business image that needs to be reflected in the site.
What’s people telling you?
The most obvious and direct way to check if your business need a new site is to ask people about it. You might have grown accustomed to the one you’ve got and don’t even think about it, but your customers, suppliers and even your friends and family can see it under a different light. Ask for their feedback and listen to what they have to say! Customer feedback is especially important since they’ll be the ones actually using the site. But don’t disregard any opinions – most people intensively use the Internet and instinctively know when a site looks old or outdated. So, if enough people are telling you your site feels like it’s come out right of the AOL golden era, then it’s time for a redesign.
After answering these 5 questions, you’ll have a clearer picture of where your site is standing. Perhaps you’re good just the way you are, which is great – just remember to update your site frequently to keep it fresh. If you, on the other hand, have discovered that your site is actually very old, then don’t lose any more time – start working in a new design right now or contact a web design agency to do it for you. The important thing is to catch up with the times to conquer your market once again, something you can only do with an updated website.