10 Signs You’re Ready for a New Website Design
Just 20 years ago, it was impressive when a company had any kind of online presence. Times have changed, and consumers now tend to visit a company website before even interacting with the company. Because of this, it is more important than ever to have a website—and an up-to-date website design.
A recent Clutch study determined that more than 92% of small businesses predict they will have their own websites by the end of 2018. Because of free website builders like Wix and Squarespace, it is so easy to get your company’s name and message out there. If you are searching for a more professionally designed website, D4 is always looking to help.
We have compiled a list of 10 reasons it might be time to upgrade your website design:
1. It’s Just Boring
In other words, your website doesn’t have the charm it once had. You might have outgrown it over the last few years, so it’s time for a facelift. Website design is always adapting to a quickly changing Internet world, so maintenance and updates are inevitable. Websites that functioned perfectly five years ago are probably encountering issues in 2018.
There are some “new” attributes that today’s websites are taking advantage of. Specifically, more effective calls-to-action, navigation, landing pages, and content management systems can make modern websites successful. Luckily, most companies can implement a new website design with minimal hassle. Web design agencies, like D4, have a specific eye for the most contemporary design methods and will easily work to your specifications.
2. It Looks Old
The traditional approach of “Why fix it if it ain’t broke?” should not apply to web design. The look and feel of a website can very well be the determining factor that drives a potential customer away. Of course, it’s not possible to satisfy everyone’s eyes, but there are certain aspects that should be considered.
As shown above, YouTube’s initial design utilized a mostly text-based interface. Back in 2007, when the first screenshot was taken, websites relied heavily on text to rank well in search engines. Even though this is still the case today, there is also a large focus on user experience. There is now a human component that was not largely considered by search engines in the early days of the Internet. This “new” design method takes readability and content structure into account rather than just keyword density. Thus, many newer website designs utilize more images, videos, and other interactive elements.
Websites that present the viewer with purely text-based content are only hurting themselves. If this hits too close to home, it might time to consider a redesign.
3. Search Engine Rankings are Low
Search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo use specific algorithms to rank website listings for certain keywords. As mentioned previously, keyword-based content used to be the only way websites could manipulate their rankings. After many exploited search engine optimization (SEO) methods and their consequential patch updates, search engines have evolved to consider things like alt tags on images, heading tags for titles, meta tags for landing pages, etc. to ensure websites are posting legitimate and helpful content.
If your website design has not been updated in a very long time, it might not be ranking well in search results. A complete redesign is not always necessary to improve rankings, but outdated SEO tactics often come along with an outdated overall design.
4. Bounce Rate is High
A “bounce” is a single-page session on your site. Bounce rate is the percentage of these sessions compared to the total. In other words, it describes the amount of people viewing a web page and immediately leaving without venturing on throughout your site.
A low bounce rate is a good thing—it means people are taking the time to browse through your website instead of becoming bored and leaving. If your website analytics reflect a high bounce rate, your website design could be the culprit.
5. You’ve Rebranded
Rebranding is a common practice in the business world. Companies evolve, and so should their branding. If your company has developed its marketing strategy to reflect a new color scheme, new fonts, new images, and/or completely new brand positioning, it is time for a website redesign.
Your company website should align with the branding portrayed in your print collateral and overall branded environment. Lacking consistency could result in confusion in the mind of the consumer, and that’s the last thing your company wants.
6. It Uses an Outdated Content Management System
A content management system, often referred to as simply a “CMS,” is a platform that allows for the creation and modification of digital information. Web content management systems are built to accompany websites by making it easy to manage web content (images, text, videos, etc.).
Just like websites have evolved over time, content management systems have done the same. At D4, we like to use the WordPress CMS for our company website and those of our clients. WordPress puts out frequent updates that move with Internet changes. If your website is currently running on a CMS that is constantly having issues or is simply inconvenient, a new website design can be your saving grace.
7. It Isn’t Responsive
Responsive web design is paramount. If your website is incompatible with mobile devices and/or varying screen resolutions, it’s time for a change. It is 2018, and all websites should be responsive.
Most web design companies will push for a mobile-optimized design when redesigning websites. This allows for the most effective search engine result rankings and will ultimately be the deciding factor when visitors come to a website.
8. It Uses Flash
Where do we even begin with Flash? Flash = bad. Ever since the emergence of smartphones and other smart devices, Flash web design has become obsolete. Flash no longer runs on iOS—the Apple mobile device operating system—making it completely useless for these users.
One of the most important and infamous elements of Flash is that it does not contribute to search engine optimization whatsoever. When trying to move your website up in search engine results, Flash does not play a factor. In fact, Adobe published a 2017 blog post detailing how it will stop making updates to Adobe Flash Player in 2020. With that being just two years from now, it is smart to upgrade to a new website design that utilizes animative elements via HTML5 or something similar that can help search rankings.
This issue boils down to user experience. If something isn’t compatible with a visitor’s smartphone or computer, they will most likely lose interest immediately.
9. It is Hard to Navigate
Sometimes, older websites accumulate so much content over the years that information tends to become hidden and/or lost in the sea of webpages. This is especially true when there are multiple users making updates to the website.
A fresh website design can eliminate this issue. Of course, it all depends on the quality of the web design agency you choose. If you are making this decision, see this blog post. Typically, newer website designs incorporate simplistic navigation structure to make things easy for visitors. A clean site structure is crucial for visitors to be able to browse a website efficiently and gain the most value from it.
10. Brand Message was Abandoned
This last point is like #5 in that it involves a company’s branding. But, branding covers a broad spectrum of a company’s business activities. Rather than print collateral and brand styling, this point refers to a brand’s message.
Companies can change and take on an entirely different brand message than it initially set in place. If this sounds familiar, it is probably time for a website redesign. A brand’s messaging is only as effective as its communication efforts. Without a design that properly represents its message, a website suffers.
Your website design is your professional first impression. It needs to be attractive yet understandable. Luckily, D4 offers professional web design services that can give your company that boost it’s looking for. With over 97 combined years of digital marketing experience, we are always looking to help. If you would like to discuss a possible website redesign, give us a call! We are happy to schedule a 30-minute consultation at no cost. We look forward to hearing from you!