Your company has a website (that’s good, considering it is 2016). However many business owners are faced with the question of whether or not they need to redesign their website, and how frequently they should do so. Maybe the website was built 4-8 years ago, and maybe the company has grown and changed a lot since then. Technology often changes, as do search algorithms, and many business owners aren’t sure how to make sense of this new information and don’t know how or if it impacts them. We get these questions very often from our clients.
Our short answer is usually “it depends”. Your industry and audience type can have a great impact on how up to date your company’s site needs to be. Functionality often plays a major role in the need to redesign, as well as optimization and growth potential.
Let’s consider this: Less than 10 seconds…sometimes less than 2 seconds…That’s how much time your company’s website has to make a positive impact on it’s viewers to keep them engaged with the content of your website. Do they stay on your site? Are you getting everything you can out of your website? Putting specific industries aside, we’ve outlined the top 5 reasons that your company might need a new website. Read below and use this information to evaluate whether it is time for an update to your company’s website!
1. Your Website Is Not Device Responsive
Back in April of 2015, Google updated their search algorithm to favor websites (in search results pages) who offered users a mobile/tablet experience, along with the desktop version of the website. We industry folks referred to this as the “MOBILEGEDDON”. This major update was due in part to the fact that mobile and tablet device usage was on the rise. Fast forward to 2016, and we are now seeing some users abandon desktop usage in their homes completely, opting for mobile and tablet devices to serve as their sole internet access points in the households. This report from ComScore shows that (as of 2014) mobile is the leading digital platform, and that the majority of internet usage now comes from our mobile app usage. If your company’s website does not offer a mobile-friendly experience, you definitely stand to lose customers who primarily use mobile devices. Want to test your site to see if Google considers your site mobile friendly? Visit Google’s Mobile Friendly Test Tool.
2. Your Website No Longer Fits Your Company’s Needs
If your website was built a few years ago, chances are that your company has grown and changed some since then. Your website needs to stay as up to date as possible – since it is the sole location that people can go to any time of the day to learn about your business. Are all of your products and services included within the content of your site, offering detailed information for your customers? Does each new piece of content have a location that it fits within – or is your site not structured in a way that handles new product and service updates well? If your website does not clearly identify and speak to the services and products your company provides, as well as what sets you apart from your competitors, it’s time for a big change, and that big change should come in the way of content. This information will also have a big impact on your website’s search engine optimization. The good news is, you don’t necessarily have to be an expert in writing to provide good, keyword rich content for your new website. Many companies, including Amplified Digital, offer content writing services to help you put your company’s best foot forward on the web. Click here to learn more about Money in Media, LLC Website Development offerings.
3. You Can’t Make Updates Easily / No Content Management System
If you answered “No” to the above question of whether or not you have all of your company’s products and services listed on your website, is it because you: A. Can’t get in touch with your website company, B. Don’t have a content management system on your website, or C. Every website change with my current company is a hassle? If so, it’s past time for a new website – maybe with a different website development company. Having updated and accurate information about your company online is the key to getting your site visitors to return, as well as search engines because they see newly, keyword rich updated content. Your website is a living, breathing entity on the internet. Every update you make to your website plays a part in its interaction with visitors, customers, and the powerful search engines. Fresh content on the internet is a new reason for Google to crawl and index your site. Of course, you should not make unnecessary changes, additions, or blog posts every hour of every day. A best practice for website content updates is to update it anytime your company has something new or additional to “say” – meaning: a product update, a service update, a job posting or position update, an industry best practice, a frequently asked question, a customer service statement, a new geographical area you’ve expanded to, a success story, photos about work you’ve done, (should we keep going?) and basically anything that would serve as a resource to your website visitors.
4. Your Biggest Competitor Updated Their Website
You’ve been watching them, haven’t you? You like what they are doing with their new website and big glossy photos of their products/services…don’t you? If your major competitors made a recent update to their website design or content, it’s likely time you should too, because their (and what could be YOUR) potential customers are seeing that fresh updated website, and they’re going to like it! Don’t let your company be the one left in the “stale site” dark – make sure your company stands out in the crowd! With so much content out there on the internet, it is important that your company do its absolute best to make an impression on website visitors. An article and report published by Adobe last year stated that “Given 15 minutes to consume content, two-thirds of people would rather read something beautifully designed than something plain.” It goes on to say that “38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content/layout is unattractive”. Does your company’s website look old, plain, and uninteresting compared to your competitor’s new, fresh website?
5. You Aren’t Seeing Results
Everyone talks about data these days as if it’s the new sliced bread. And it can be, if these conversations turn into HOW the companies USE this data to impact their decisions. Are you using analytic data from your website to impact and plan your traditional marketing, digital marketing, site layout, and future content strategies? Are you using this data to help you learn about which content users want to consume on your website, and which content they aren’t consuming? Are you measuring what pages offer the highest conversion rates (contact/form requests, downloads, eCommerce purchases, and phone calls)? Do some pages have very high exit or bounce rates, leaving you to wonder “what went wrong”? If your website is equipped with tracking mechanisms such as Google Analytics or another usage reporting system, you should be able to measure how well your website is performing, and if it is making a positive impact on your company’s bottom line. If not, it’s time to get started!