If your site content rarely changes, chances are neither has your design.
I use the internet for everything - I think that's a true trademark of not only my Millennial generation but of society at large today. Whether it's looking up a phone number (are phonebooks even still in print?), getting directions (literally what is a map), reading product reviews and comparing prices, getting technical assistance, or even booking an appointment, the internet has replaced what was once necessary human contact in a massive number of circumstances. One of the absolute worst #firstworldproblems I encounter, then, is when something presented on a corporate website is wrong, outdated, or eludes to the company being just totally out of touch with modern life via some early-2000s-Windows-98-era web design.
Works against your company
Clearly, it's increasingly apparent that a neglected website actually works against your company - even more so than the lack of one completely. Fixing content that is blatantly wrong or outdated is a simple enough task. Updating a stagnant, poorly designed, non-intuitive website is another process altogether. Before diving into a redesign, ask yourself the following:
- Are you generating business and/or business leads from your website?
- Does your site display properly on all current web browsers?
- Has your business changed in any way recently?
- Is your site content static (rarely changing)?
- Are competitors with better sites ranking above you on search engines?
If you answered yes to any of the above, it's probably time for a redesign.
- Not generating leads from your corporate website defeats the entire purpose of having one. A corporate website is an investment that you made to inform and attract customers, and an investment you should most definitely generate a return from. In e-commerce, this is an easy enough metric to measure. In more traditional business settings, however, you're going to have to start asking clients how they found you. If no one ever mentions your site, there's a good chance it's not working for you. Having no leads occur from your site is an issue that involves strategic analysis and enhanced customer knowledge to be sure your re-design is doing what it should be.
- You may be running an outdated browser in your office (tsk tsk), but your clients aren't. A simple cross-browser (on updated platforms) test can ensure your site is displaying properly on all browsing variations. If not, you're definitely past due to get with the times via a fresh, modern new design. Additionally, if your website isn't mobile friendly please put some serious thought into moving into the Age of the iPhone.
- If your business has changed in any way at all recently - new logo, location, service/product offering, phone number, hours - you need to let your clients know. While this isn't always cause for an entire website overhaul, it may be the most important item on this list to employ.
- If your site content rarely changes, chances are neither has your design. While having a basic site with static content isn't necessarily a bad thing, is does you zero favours in terms of SEO. Google and friends aren't interested in a site that hasn't been touched since 2009, so why would your customers be? Finding simple ways to integrate regular updates into your corporate website is key to keeping on top of rankings and fresh in consumer's minds.
- Finally, take a look at your competition. Hint: Google keywords relevant to your business (ex. 'Edmonton Web Design') in a new, incognito browser window. Take note of where you rank in comparison to other organizations. For those who rank above you, take heed in what they're doing online to capture the top spot - these areas of both expertise and opportunity will come in handy when planning a redesign.
There's no denying we're in an internet-fuelled era, our phones, tablets and laptops perform tasks that would've once taken teams of people to complete. Making the web work for your business - from finance to farming - is not only smart, but necessary. If it's time to re-think your website, drop us a line at Division 1 and let our team work with you to begin shaping your new online presence.
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