You may think designing a website is a one-and-done deal, but you couldn't be more wrong.
Just as your business grows and changes, so should your current website. That doesn't mean you need to do a site redesign every year, but many companies and individuals make the mistake of putting a website refresh on the back burner instead of viewing it as a natural part of the redesign process.
Is it time-consuming? Like many things worth doing, it also offers many benefits. What type of benefits? Let's go over just a few of them together, shall we?
Enhanced User Experience (UX)
Believe it or not, the science behind website redesign is constantly evolving, and the visual appearance that may have been "cutting edge" back in 2012 is likely pretty dated at this point. In fact, much of the behind-the-scenes coding and different elements is probably doing your site more harm than good.
Giving your website a new coat ensures your company doesn't look stuck in the past.
If a complete website refresh isn't in the cards this year, at least spend some time taking a look at your navigation. Chances are you've added a lot of content over the years, but:
☑️ Is it easy to find?
☑️ Is your navigation cluttered?
☑️ Is there an easier way for your customers to find the information?
☑️ Are there underperforming pages you could cut?
These are a few questions to consider when it comes to enhancing the UX of your site. One great tip is to use the search for your site and check out the search results. Was the desired page located in the top nav, or buried under a bunch of paths? Just another thing to consider when it comes to potential customers.
SEO and Site Performance
What many people don't understand about SEO (search engine optimization) is that you need to do it often and continuously.
Updating your copy to rank for specific keywords in organic search results isn't going to magically change your rankings overnight: that's not how search engines work. It takes time for search engines to crawl your content to ensure that you're not just producing a bunch of spam and that your content includes relevant results.
Fun fact: algorithms that search engines like Google use are constantly getting updated, which means your content needs to get updated as well, especially if you want to hit page one of the search result pages.
It's not just search engine optimization you want to be concerned about: mobile-friendliness should be one of your top priorities for any branding or website refresh. Not only are a growing number of consumers viewing content on their phones and tablets over desktops, but search engines like Google penalize websites that aren't mobile-friendly. Nothing is worse than Google Jail, right?
Every day, it seems like the news is covering another security breach for one company or another, which is why site security is so important.
The older your site is, the more vulnerable it is to potential cyber threats. Utilizing the latest and greatest security measures as part of your content management system will give your company a fighting chance against hackers.
It's not just the act of securing your site that is important, though: taking your customer's safety seriously builds trust between you and your consumers. Customers are more likely to engage with your content (and share their personal information) if they feel proper security measures are in place to keep it safe.
Brand Image and Credibility
As top brands like Coke, Lego, and Dunkin' Donuts have taken time to give their brands a facelift as they evolved and changed, so should you. These branding elements should seamlessly integrate with your website refresh.
Has your mission changed? Your vision? Have you worked with some incredible customers who had terrific things to say about you?
(It's okay; you can toot your own horn.)
Sharing testimonials, achievements, and milestones is only a handful of ways to showcase your company and increase brand loyalty. Being true to your mission and vision and showing how that has morphed over the years instills trust in your customers.
Engagement and Conversion
At the end of the day, you don't just want people to visit your site; you want them to do something, right? That's why having fresh, engaging content is so important.
Whether it's updated visuals, highlighting new products/services, or a write-up on your business, having unique and interactive content for your site visitors to engage with is critical to your site's success.
Along with engaging content, you want to ensure your CTAs will grab the users' attention and encourage engagement. Great examples of effective CTAs include images, memes (if applicable), ones with contrasting colors from the rest of your site that pop, and gripping copy.
In conclusion, is a website refresh a colossal undertaking? Perhaps, but as the digital landscape continues to grow and change, you can't afford NOT to ensure your website is up-to-date and in tip-top shape if you want to stand out from the competition.
And just in case you're curious, we can help with that. Remember earlier how we said it's okay to toot your own horn?
Our digital strategy starts with targeted SEO research and elegant, functional web design—and follows through with data-driven email marketing, digital ads, social media and more. Let’s get digital.