We are fast approaching the first day of summer and I know what is top of mind for you “Does my website need an overhaul?”. Ok, I confess that swimming, camping and enjoying the sun is probably what’s on your mind, but this question was recently on mine. So, I acted on it and did a redesign. By most standards, my old design was fine, but the content was outdated and didn’t reflect my current brand.
Your website is your digital storefront. Just like you wouldn’t let your physical storefront become disheveled and obsolete, you shouldn’t let your website become outdated. Every so often you need to apply fresh paint, update the signs, and change the window display to get people to turn their heads.
There are many signs that your website needs a redesign, but I will give you the top five IMHO (In my humble opinion).
YOUR CURRENT WEBSITE IS NOT RESPONSIVE.
You probably found this article because you googled something like “do I need a redesign?” and you got pages and pages of Top 10 articles on why you need one. At the top of everyone of those articles is this first one. The bottom line is this, your website will not perform well in search engines if it is not responsive and it will only continue to get worse the longer you leave it.
For those of you not up on the computer lingo, not responsive means it doesn’t look good on mobile phones and tablets. When someone finds your website on a phone or tablet and it doesn’t automatically increase the font to a readable size and reduce the pictures to fit the screen, then it is not responsive. If someone needs to do the “finger spread” to read your webpage, then it is not responsive.
In the last year, Google changed its search parameters for phones and if your website is not responsive, then it is moved down in the results. This is especially critical if you have a business that relies on people searching with their phone on the fly like “Where is the closest pizza place to me?”.
YOUR CURRENT WEBSITE STILL HAS LITTLE FLASHING SMILEY GIFS.
If your website has little flashing smiley faces, or it was designed by someone who wore shinny gold pants, then it is probably outdated and needs a fresh new look. Website design changes rapidly and it is recommended that you have it tweaked at least every 18 months to stay current.
Your website may also be outdated when:
- Your navigation (menu) is large and complicated. It used to be the norm to give all sorts of content on the website so your visitor had everything they needed to make an informed choice. The problem with this is that it made your menu more complicated for the user to find what they were specifically looking for.
- Your website has the “boxed in” look. Most current websites today have a few full width images, especially the home page banner.
- Your company branding has changed but your website is still the old colours and old content.
- Your website is still using outdated software like Flash which can create a security risk of hacking.
YOUR WEBSITE IS NOT RUN ON A CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
In order to stay competitive online, you need to be able to update your information as soon as it changes. In the past, to do this you would have to pay your website designer every time you wanted to make a small change because your website was programmed in HTML. Now, with systems like WordPress, the content changes and blog articles can be easily done by you. Even if you don’t have the time or desire to do these updates, then having your website in WordPress opens the door so that you can hire Virtual Assistants that are trained in the software to help you. This leaves your website designer free to help you improve your design and keep it up-to-date.
THE NUMBER OF VISITORS TO YOUR WEBSITE HAS SLOWED.
SEO, have you heard of it? It is the key to getting your website noticed. It stands for Search Engine Optimization and put simply, it is a set of standards and guidelines that your website should utilize to rank it higher in internet searches. It includes things like ensuring your content contains your keywords and they are placed appropriately on the page, making sure your images are labeled properly to be found in searches, and that your website loads fast. If your website is not being found by google, then your website may not be optimized.
YOUR WEBSITE IS NOT HTTPS.
In simple terms, HTTPS means that your website is secure because it passes information between your computer and the internet in an encrypted fashion so that no one in between them can understand.
If your website is not HTTPS (it is only HTTP – without the “S”), then it will rank lower in searches. Also, in the near future, Google Chrome is going to boldly label in red your website as “NOT SECURE” when someone visits your website. This surely doesn’t instill confidence with your clients.
If you don’t have the time or the budget for a website redesign, I recommend that you at least talk to your web designer about switching to HTTPS immediately. There are many free options out there to make your website secure, but be aware that some large hosting companies do charge for this upgrade.
The above 5 signs are great indicators that your website needs a redesign, but one true sign is this:
Do you hate your current website and are embarrassed to give out the link?
If you answered yes, then it is time.
If you have any questions, we are happy to talk to you. Book a FREE Discovery Call with us and let’s connect.