In my personal experience, about 90% of the small business websites I see are outdated. Sometimes I hear about an awesome product from a local store and head over to their website to check it out. Who... who would even think of buying a product from this mess?
Your website serves as a digital brand and storefront. Regardless of the size of your business, if you haven't updated your website in the last few years it may be to re-evaluate your site and potentially redesign.
If you're still hesitating, here are some solid reasons to help make up your mind.
52% of web traffic originates from mobile devices
Fun fact today: over 50% of smartphone users start their mornings by grabbing their smartphones.
It's nearly 2018 and mobile use has already overtaken desktop usage when it comes to web surfing. Whether you want to believe it or not, every customer of yours probably has at least one mobile device.
If your website is still not responsive going into 2018, you really need to redesign your website. Seriously, if this is you, stop reading and get started.
In short, having a mobile-friendly website is no longer a perk; it is a requirement that no small business owner should neglect.
Increase user trust and brand credibility
Having an antiquated web design or inaccurate information on your company website will not help your digital marketing campaign.
Outdated website design isn't only about aesthetics. Neglecting your site for long periods of time may lead your visitors to believe that your company is out of business.
If your website looks old and filled with broken links, it's going to be pretty hard to convince your website visitors to trust your service, let alone recommend or refer your company. The consequences can really hurt your small business.
There's no magic number, but for most small business websites, a redesign every 2-3 years is a good benchmark. If you run an e-commerce business it may be smart to be on the lower end of that range, while static content sites can usually stretch up to 3 years.
Revamping web design and improving UX/UI design will not only help building brand credibility, but also increase sales performance. Frequently adding testimonials, reviews, company news or blog posts will all help increase brand credibility and ultimately your business revenue.
Engage users on social media
When you had your website designed and built a few years ago, social media might not have been as important to marketing as it is now. Customers aren't on your company website daily, but they check do check their Twitter or Facebook for about 135 minutes per day.
If you're a small business owner and planning on redesigning your website, adding links to your company Facebook fan page or Twitter account on the site is a good idea. Plus creating social media accounts for your business is completely free, so this is pretty low-hanging fruit.
When online customers can't find your company on big social media platforms, it makes them question your legitimacy. By listing your brand on those social media networks, you're also getting free advertising. Moreover, your competitors probably already have their social media established. Do you want to be left behind?
Trust me, it's not that hard. Ask your web developer to set up an auto publish function for your blog, so that all you need to do is write a post on your company blog and new posts automatically get posted to your social media account.
A better looking website
I don't know about you guys, but an ugly website really makes me start to doubt the taste and competence of a company. Especially for any design related services or products; you just can't ask anyone to trust you if your website is hideous and outdated.
A compelling website design lets your clients know that you've kept up with the times and that your business is flourishing. Also, a well-designed website can not only better present your brand, but also attract and convert your leads more effectively. No matter what size your company is, good design is good business!
After building your first website, you've probably learned which parts of the site you need to update or maintain the most. If you find the current content manage system (CMS) is confusing and you're still trying to figure it out, take the opportunity to upgrade your CMS during a redesign.
Setting up a good CMS for your small to medium size business website is beneficial. One of the biggest benefits is saving yourself money in the long run, since you can update and change anything on the site without hiring a developer for every little item.
WordPress is the most common and popular platform for small business owners. It's very easy to use, very easy to update, and affordable to build. If you can't figure out how to do something in WordPress, the community is so large with billions of WordPress guides and tutorials at your fingertips.
Improve search engine ranking
Is your current website search engine friendly? If your website was built more than a couple years ago, and you haven't updated much, it may need to be updated to be current with Google's ranking algorithm.
These days, everyone looks for products or services on the internet. SEO plays an important role in the online success of a business.
If your website is awesome but your small business does not have good online visibility, then it's still useless. Converting 100% of 0 visitors won't go very far.
Additionally, brand awareness is a fantastic perk. People are far more likely to trust a brand that shows up in the top positions of the search results list.
When you should not to redesign your business website
Is it time for your to redesign your website? Frankly speaking, there's no expiration date for websites, and you shouldn't redesign if you don't really need it. Just because it's been 3 years doesn't necessarily mean your website is not working for you anymore.
Here are some reasons I have heard from clients, when they don't really need a website redesign:
- A friend told me that he doesn't like my site. (If many people are telling you this, then maybe, but don't be deterred by one person.)
- One user told me he couldn't find what he wants on the site. (Same as above. Have you implemented heat maps and analytics yet?)
- I don't like the current accent color and images. (If it ain't broke, don't fix it.)
- My website was built 3 months ago and it's not making me money. (3 months is a very short time to see returns and could be seasonal).
- My competitor just launched a new website so I wanna keep up, although my site is fine. (What does their site offer over yours?)
- My website works great and making me money, but I still want to have a more trendy look. (Business is business- sometimes trendy does not translate into profit.)
No matter what your reason, first of all, review your current website. Write down any problems you're having right now with it, and determine if a website redesign is what will solve these problems. Maybe your website just needs a couple of tweaks, instead of redesigning the entire website.
You should ultimately try to find out why your website visitors are not converting. Maybe your website users can't find the check out button? Or maybe the price of your products is too high? Find out the reasons and improve from there. Sometimes a full redesign is warranted, but other times a few minor styling changes can go a long way.
When you should redesign your business website
You should consider a website redesign if you find yourself in any of these situation:
- The bounce rate of your website is higher than 85% (meaning more than 85% of the people leave right away when they enter your website).
- Your company goals or services are not the same as before.
- Your website is not mobile-friendly. (Seriously?)
- Your competitors' websites looks 10x better and way more modern than yours, to the point that you've gotta admit to yourself - if you were a customer, you would buy from them after looking at both of your sites.
Don't be impulsive when deciding whether or not to have your website redesigned; take some time to evaluate first. If you need help with reviewing your current website, we would love to help.
Feel free to share your thoughts below, or contact us for a free one hour consultation.