Design trends and online technology change so frequently these days, that it’s hard to keep up for most companies. Although staying current with trends may not be top of your marketing list, staying up to date with online technology is essential. Most people think they can have a website designed once and that it’s now good for the next 10 years..or even forever. Sadly this is not the case, but how do you know when it’s time for an overhaul? It’s not like websites (and corporate/promotional media) has an expiry date like stale food in a supermarket. To make sure you capitalise on all of the new online opportunities and maximise your incoming traffic, a stale website could be the one thing holding you back.
Most companies that shun the thought of further outlay for their website are really shooting themselves in the foot. It many not have been in your initial budget, but spending some extra cash on a new website could render a high return on your investment. Every company should consider revamping their website at leaset every 2-3 years.
What does a stale website say about your company?
Having an old, uninspiring company website can be almost as damaging as not having one at all. If your site still looks like it did 10 years ago, the chances are it’s not doing you any favours. Moreover, if your site was designed in Adobe Flash (as so many were in this time period) then your site also isn’t displaying on half of the worlds devices. Below we will discuss the reasons for creating a brand new website and also some more obvious pointers that your old site is now obsolete.
1. Your Website Isn’t responsive (mobile-friendly)
With 40% of websites being viewed on mobile devices and growing fast, if your website isn’t responsive it’s time for a new one. This is probably one of the most important and most common reasons to start looking for a web designer. Mobile viewers want fast loading, intuitive websites that are easy to navigate and easy to read. Features such as one click phone dialling and other new “intelligent” features are only available to the user if they have been specially programmed. You simply wont find these on an older website.
2. An outdated and stale design
The second most common reason for a website being redesigned is age. Your website may have looked passable 10 years ago when web design was largely still in it’s infancy, but today’s websites are a whole new story. First impressions count if you are trying to entice a new customer or client. A website that is too basic or looks like it was designed with old technologies will send your target audience running a mile. If you take into account that your website’s appearance is a direct reflection of your business image, then it makes sense to make sure it’s polished.
3. Online web builders are a waste of time and money
The third reason that most companies hunt for a professional web designer, is that they have tried to use an online web builder. At Dreamkatcha we constantly have requests from new customers, asking if we can take their attempt at creating a company website for free and turn it into a fully functioning website. Unfortunately, the answer is always NO! Due to the way that these online web builders are rigged, the site is truly stuck with the originating company. The website cant be migrated like a usual website and the code is hidden from all other web developers. This is completely intentional and locks you in to the ever rising hosting charges and optional (yet really essential) extras. View some of our projects here.
4. The technology is out of date
Even if your website was created with the latest technology 5 years ago, if it hasn’t been updated on a regular basis, it’s dangerously out of date. I say dangerous because hackers and viruses evolve at the same rate as technology does, sometimes even quicker. Whatever security your website had in place 5 years ago, won’t be effective in today’s minefield of risks and threats. This is especially true if your site was created with a CMS platform such as WordPress or Joomla. This software is open source and is freely available to the public and unfortunately, hackers. This means once a liability is found in the code, it is freely available to everyone. This leaves your website open for attack from even the most novice of trouble makers.
5. Ever evolving browsers and operating systems
There seems to be a new IOS or new website browser created every month these days! Thankfully, most people stick the main players such as Firefox, Safari and Chrome. Although these browsers all use similar structures, they all display your site slightly differently. Due to the endless variations of themes and base platforms this can leave your site displaying irregularly on some browsers. This is usually ironed out once your web designer has finished on the creative side and began to troubleshoot across browsers. If they haven’t then you need to find a new designer. Read this article to help you find a good web designer.
But what happens when you software company releases a major update to their browser? These updates are usually minor and nothing to worry about, but over time there will be some fairly large reprogramming. This can leave your website almost unreadable with elements displaying all over the shop. What’s worse is that functionality will also halt, leaving contact forms and other essential elements completely useless.
6. Products or features are out of date
Businesses change and grow over the years. luckily your online marketing can be changed without having to spend your entire budget on printing new media. You may have a range of products that you no longer sell, or perhaps have a whole new section to add. You may also have services that you no longer provide, or the focus of you business has now changed and you want to promote something new. If your web designer hasn’t included a CMS (Content Management System) then you are most likely going to need a professional to make these changes for you.
7. Your website is underperforming
If you aren’t getting the results You expected from your website, then maybe you just cant see how bad it is. Not everybody is web design savvy and it’s easy to be convinced by others that your website is great…even by your web designer! You may believe your site is functioning as it should be, yet most viewers are simply put off and jump ship. This could be down to a number of reasons, such as dull and uninspiring design, or poor user interface making it near impossible to navigate.
Many of these problems can be down to not hiring the right web designer. If you have tried to hire someone on the cheap such as a friend or amateur from freelance websites or abroad, then unfortunately you get what you paid for! Save yourself a lot of time, money and stress – hire a professional web designer from the start!
If you want to know what changes you should make? Read our next article coming soon….
If you would like to know what Dreamkatcha could do for your business website, to help increase traffic and revenue, contact us today via our website.