All business sites have a lifespan. After initial launch, they promote your brand, help customers find you online and/or geographically, and generate new sales. At some point, however, your site will no longer align with your company goals. Perhaps the design suggests an era passed, or the structure is not user-friendly. The timing and reasons for a website redesign are different for every business. Periodical site reviews can inform the decision when to redesign. During the evaluation, the respective site owner should articulate the website’s strengths and weaknesses. If any of the following characteristics are present in your resulting list, you may need to fast track a redesign.
1. Uses Previously-Dominant Development Techniques
The majority of websites built within the last few years are developed with HTML, CSS, and a content management system (CMS). Flash, while a popular choice for entertainment and automobile sites, has lost favor due to conflicts with search engine optimization (SEO), iPhones/iPads display, and overall site load time. A CMS is an extremely valuable modern feature, allowing site owners who lack coding knowledge to update content and regularly communicate with customers.
Most contemporary websites target a 1024×768 pixel screen resolution or contract/expand depending on the browser’s width. If your site was formatted for a 800×600 screen resolution (or less) and set at a fixed width, it appears instantly older to your audience.
2. Doesn’t Reflect Your Business
Has your business evolved, yet your site remains stagnant? If your website hasn’t been updated in over a year, it probably does not accurately portray your company. Perhaps you are able to update the text via a CMS, but the overall design suggests an old version of your business. Design appeal and the timeliness of your content directly impact visitors’ perception of your company.
Opting for a site template instead of an original design can negatively affect your company’s branding. Instead of presenting the unique aspects of your business within a custom design, your site becomes one of many with a duplicate look & feel.
3. Suffers from Low Traffic
Assuming you have analytics software installed on your site, you can check stats such as traffic, bounce rate, and return visitors. Low traffic is an important alarm because it suggests poor content, stale design, and/or improper SEO. Does your site content give visitors a reason to share it? Are the pages search-engine friendly? A thorough audit of your site and a survey of your customers should reveal the specific factors contributing to low traffic and corresponding remedies.
Remaining cognizant of these three indicators and your site’s condition will empower your online marketing efforts. By optimizing your website for the future and completing an overhaul when necessary, you site will serve as an ongoing vital asset to your company.