When is it the right time to redesign your website? Simply put, consider the image above in terms of your website. Does your website look out of place? Does it look at least as good or better than the sites listed on page one of a Google search? Be honest with yourself. If you are having a hard time deciding, make sure to ask a few friends or customers. They should, and probably will, give you some type of feedback. At any rate, a good rule to follow is to redesign the appearance of your site at least every 4 years. Sometimes old can be cool but usually not when it comes to attracting customers with your website.
The following reasons can you help you to determine the right time to invest in a redesign of your website:
1. Your site looks like it is from the 90's
Tiled backgrounds, tons of drop down menus, lots of content jammed in the center of the page surrounded by adds; these are all descriptions of outdated website designs. If you’re still unclear, take a look at the Top 5 Worst Website Design Fails. You cannot afford to have a site that looks like one of those in today’s age under any circumstances. Whether you are trying to sell product or just using your website as a promotional tool, a perspective client will take one look at your site and equate it to the quality of work you do and whether or not your business is thriving.
2. Your site looks horrible on a phone or tablet
If you answered yes to any of the website descriptions above, I can guarantee you that your website does not have a responsive design. Responsive web design (RWD) is an approach to web design that makes web pages render well on a variety of devices and window or screen sizes. If the text on your site is too small, columns are out of place, users find it difficult to navigate the small buttons on their phones, then you will need to redesign your site. Users will expect your site to look seamless across all their different devices.
3. Check your competitor's sites
Small business owners know how competitive the market for customers is. Unfortunately, a lot of business owners focus solely on the customers in their storefront and neglect their internet customers. Smart owners are constantly innovating and creating traffic and buzz to their business in their physical and web locations. Be sure to check out what other businesses in your industry are doing on their sites. If you’re highly active on social media sites, perhaps you would want to integrate your Facebook or Twitter feed to display directly on your website. An owner who is on top of the latest trends and understands users’ behavior could make a huge leap over their competitors.
4. Your website does not reflect your current business and marketing strategies
Most consumers, whether visiting your store for the first time or not, will visit your website to determine if your business has what they need. Why would you not have all of your current offerings on your website?! Believe it or not, this happens all the time. Customers need to see the current state of your business, and if your online presence is not reflecting that, you definitely need to redesign your site.
5. You can't update the content!
6. Stuff is broke
Why would any customer want stay on your website when the feature they want to use is broke? I see this all the time. Broken links, broken input fields, emails that are out of date etc… If you have multiple problems on your site, you will have to weigh the cost of repairing those items versus replacing them with a new design.
If you are ready for a complete website redesign, be prepared to put work into the process. Creating a site tailored to your audience is key and can be a fun process. Make sure your design is expandable and meets your goals and strategies. After all, a site that is beautiful, easy to navigate, and fits your customer audience is a sure way to help your business grow.