Your website is one of the most important aspects of your brand. If it’s outdated, you’ll lose credibility. If it’s slow, you’ll lose sales. And if it doesn’t follow Search Engine Optimization (SEO) best practices, it’s as if it doesn’t even exist.
We’ve put together a video and a blog to help you identify when your company needs a website refresh.
#1. Your Website Is Behind the Mobile and SEO Curve
It’s essential for your website to be optimized for mobile in order to capture and engage smartphone users who make up over 50% of your potential audience.
If the design of your site is only optimized for a desktop or laptop user, you’re unintentionally sending the message to your audience that you’re not tuned into the people who want and need to access your website via a mobile device.
Another major component of an up-to-date website is SEO. When the SEO on your website is not up-to-date, it means that you’ve made it nearly impossible for Google to find your website and make it part of the search results. If your website doesn’t have a schema markup, page titles, meta descriptions, and a solid naming taxonomy and URL structure, then it’s impossible for your audience and search engines to navigate your site with ease.
While the terminology may be confusing and overwhelming, you can easily get help by hiring an experienced programmer, designer and SEO expert to bring your website up to speed.
#2. A Friendly User Experience is Nonexistent
Every site has a purpose. Between getting people to signup for your newsletter to asking people to browse and select products for purchase, having a clear and easy-to-navigate path is critical.
If your target user can’t figure out your site in less than 20 seconds, they’re likely to search elsewhere. Imagine you were in the grocery store shopping for milk and couldn’t figure out where the dairy section was. You would leave feeling incredibly frustrated and probably never return.
Learn the needs of your target user, anticipate and direct their behavior and use it to drive placement of visual cues for important calls-to-action (CTA’s) and other important engagement points.
#3. Content is Outdated, Irrelevant, and Poorly Managed
Part of keeping your site current is as much content driven as it is visual appeal. If your site is primarily composed of dated or irrelevant information, and the overall brand messaging isn’t in alignment with your company value proposition, it’s time for an overhaul.
Users view outdated content and messaging as a sign that you’ve given up and will likely lose confidence in your offering and feel misinformed about your value.
You can combat staleness with regular blog posts and a content strategy that includes regular site updates.
Pro Tip: Do not write website copy that has long blocks of text. Website visitors have lost the time and patience to read. Therefore, you want your website to provide just enough information to generate interest and encourage phone calls or in-person conversations with your business development team.
#4. You’re Still Using Flash Animations, Gifs or Automatic Media
These trends as a whole have been removed as best practices, and sites that contain these “social taboos” are often dismissed and discredited.
In most cases, any page that loads or plays media automatically is asking too much of the user by bogging their system down with unwanted media. Flash plugin update requests and errors loading images are also problems when utilizing the dated Flash and Gif animations.
Hire a skilled programmer for complex interactions, get rid of the fluff and you’re on your way to success.
#5. You’re Using the Wrong Fonts or Images
Fonts will make your site feel dated if used improperly. In most cases, sans-serif fonts are more modern and readable online. Use them! And save serif fonts for printed collateral.
Click this image for a more detailed breakdown!
Image choice is also a reflection of a company’s brand and how they want to be perceived by their target audience. Always try to use professionally shot custom photos that are company-specific. If hiring a photographer isn’t an option, use high-end stock photos from sites like Adobe Stock or iStock.
Once you have both of these areas mastered, combine them to create a modern layout that’s easy to navigate and fits your brand.
So, does your company need a website redesign?
Request a website consultation from the Houston digital marketing experts at Marketing Refresh.