Introduction: how to know if you need a new website
Since the website redesign spectrum is all over the place, it can be hard to know if you need a new website. There are large public companies who haven’t changed the look of their website in decades, while other companies of the same size (like General Electric) are constantly challenging themselves digitally by adding new website trends, social media platforms, videos, and presentations. So how do you know where your company fits in all of this? We don’t mean you need to be keeping up with every single digital trend-that would just get tiring. We’ve compiled a few ‘pain points’ that website viewers commonly feel when viewing a website. If your website suffers from any of these frustrations, you probably need a new website. A whole new site can sound like a big undertaking, especially if you’re looking for outside help. Here’s a quick eBook on how to pick the right website agency.
Pain point #1: Not compatible with modern browsers
Ever heard of BrowserStack? This online tool allows you to type in your website’s URL and run it through every new and older version of of Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and more. If your current website isn’t looking so pretty on the newer versions of these browsers (or newer versions of Android and iOS devices) it’s time to start thinking of an upgrade. It should be compatible with most older versions too, but dinosaur websites can’t hang. We recommend that before IE 9 just needs to upgrade.
Pain point #2: You’re not mobile-friendly
This one’s a biggie. Check to see how your website looks on a smartphone and tablet. Do you have to zoom in on the screen to click buttons on the page? Is it really hard to type in your information on contact forms? Is it impossible for you to navigate to another page without clicking two things you didn’t mean to? A non mobile optimized website is very frustrating for your website viewers. Make sure one size fits all.
Pain point #3: Outdated design
Again, we’re not saying your website always has to be the latest and greatest in website design trends. But if it’s been over three years since you last upgraded your website’s design, you’ll probably need a new website. Remember the internet design trends of five or ten years ago, with neon flashing glitter letters and scrolling text on banners? It’s not just about looking good; a quality website design looks good on your company as well. It shows that you’re keeping up with the times and kept informed.
Pain point #4: No on-page content strategy
Remember that a website’s main purpose (especially the homepage) is to give users and potential investors the necessary information to make an educated decision and hopefully decide to contact you to find out more. Our digital attention span is getting shorter and shorter nowadays, especially with so many companies converting their messages to short, bitesized videos. No one wants to navigate to a website with lots of useless content and confusing pathways through the site so they are unable to find the information they need.
Pain point #5: Content isn’t optimized for searches
Search Engine Optimization (or SEO) is a term that’s not going away anytime soon. When someone has an issue that your company solves, they’ll most likely search for the answer on the internet. Make sure your content is optimized for search engines so that when someone Googles their question, your website pops up! SEO is a bit tricky to implement, but here are some SEO basics to know before a website redesign.
Pain point #6: You can’t update your own content
This is a huge pain point if you’re a public company and constantly need to update your investor section with the latest news release, or publish your quarterly numbers or an annual report. You need the help of a good content management system (or CMS) to be able to access the backend of your site and make the necessary updates.
Pain point #7: You like you competitor’s website better
Time for some honesty here. If even you love a competitor’s website more than your own, then all your customers or potential investors are bound to as well. A great website establishes you as an industry leader and makes you seem much more on top of your game than competitors websites who just can’t get it together.
Conclusion: okay, so what’s the next step?
If you’ve concluded from the above pain points that you need a new website, what are the next steps you should take? You want to decide if it makes more sense for your company to hire a website agency to take over, or possibly multiple specialized agencies to refine your full digital presence? Here’s the difference between full service agencies vs. niche agencies. If you want a more specific look about what to do when looking for an agency, download The Complete Checklist for Hiring a Website Agency below!