When was the last time your brand website was updated with the latest features and design? Chances are that, a lot has changed since you last updated your website. Tools that have been used by you have likely been improved, the business might have pivoted, your brand swooped in on the target audience or perhaps the target audience itself shifted.

If you are unable to remember the last adapted to the changing trends, it might be time for a website refresh. To determine whether the brand needs an update, it is important to evaluate what would necessitate a site makeover, the tools required and how to position it as an opportunity to market the brand.

The website says a lot about how the brand operates and how the audiences will be able to relate to the brand. For many business owners and entrepreneurs, a website is the single most important marketing tool at their disposal. Websites drive sales and introduce the brand and its products and services to the world. However a website that isn’t visually appealing or is less functional can drive customers away.

Considering the rapid pace at which technology and design trends are changing, a formerly cutting edge site can become out-dated. Is the content on the site taken less than a few minutes to load? Does the site look good on tables and mobile screens? If the answers for both questions are no, it is time for a website refresh and to switch to a responsive theme!

It is important to notice that if the website is performing well and for that it is vital to ensure that the website and the brand are aligned correctly. By changing the logo, colour palette or brand voice it can help modify the website and align it with the brand. Introducing a new line of product and service can help in evolving the brand for the audience too.

Having a developed website design is a cost-effective way to advertise your business on the internet. There are various ways to update your website and below are few key reasons why you need to update your website.

13 Ways to Update Your Website and Be Ahead Competitors

  • Visual Appeal

When the target audience visits your brand’s website, they see it as a reflection of the organization. If the site looks professional and is loaded with useful information, readers will see the brand as an expert in its industry. Whereas, if the site looks poorly designed and structured with an out-dated design & development, the audience will make a negative thought towards your website. The website should highlight the product and services you offer along with the layout should be harmonious and consistent.

  • Responsive and Mobile Friendly

With the fast moving speed of technology, the audience are gathering information through their mobile devices and no longer need a desktop to search for data. Having a mobile-friendly responsive design is crucial for the brand to get more attraction.

Responsive web design is a collection of techniques that allows a website to adapt to the size of the screen it’s being viewed on. If you have not updated your website in a while, the chances are that you may be driving mobile users and potential customers away.

  • Technique and Coding

Is your brand’s website browser compatible? Is the source code i.e. HTML or CSS valid? Is the technique or programming language outdated? If you don’t know the answer to these questions, you are lacking in web development, an important factor which should be considered when increasing the usability of the website.

Each year web standards change radically while techniques to build websites become more advanced to comply with the latest standards. If your brand’s website was developed several years ago, it probably has unnecessary HTML code which may be slowing down the website’s loading speed that will impact the ranking in the Google search results. Including CSS coding to the website will allow the web pages to adapt to the smartphone devices.

  • Branding your imagery

One aspect of a website which positively impacts its objectives is photography. There are many dated website designs that have an over-reliance of imagery. The usage of branded images makes the website more attractive. By using branded images for the website and other platforms it shows that the brand is aligned with the vision and message. Hence creating the correct imagery for the website is essential for the brand and their potential customers.

  • Effective Use of Call to Action

Many dated websites lack effective call to actions (CTA) that convert users to customers. A CTA is a button or link that the brand can place on the website to drive prospective customers to become leads by completing an action on the landing page. The CTA should be direct so that the customer knows where they are being led to making navigation simple.

  • Measuring Effectiveness

An old website may not be equipped with the required tools to measure the effectiveness of your brand’s online presence. An out-dated website may not include heat mapping, conversion tracking or user recordings. In today’s technology evolving world, there is an assortment of online tools which you can invest in to help measure what works and what doesn’t on the website, but to use them it is essential to have a modern website.

  • Content

The first impression of the website that a customer would have is the overall layout of the design, but the reader is also visiting your website for useful information and content. A site redesign can allow you to re-address how you communicate with all the visitors and to write simple copy which will be effective and remembered by the audience.

The content on the website should be considered the more important element, as it helps in determining how effective a website is. Fresh and unique content is a very important factor in encouraging the audience to revisit the site more often.

  • SEO and Website Update

Just like the website, Digital marketing and SEO also require a new and fresh look. If you do not update your website, it is sure to fall in search engine rankings. Search engines regard websites with new and fresh content as a relevant site to web users. Your content might be gold but if it’s the same content as it was five years ago then search engine crawlers might not think of it as relevant.

The redesign also gives you a chance to rethink the target keywords and the overall conversion rate of the website.

  • Easy Navigation

When referred to user experience (UX), it is referring to the totality of visitors’ experience with the site, more than just how it looks. UX includes how easy the site is to use, its speed, how easy it is to find the information and how little friction can be created when visitors try to complete whatever action it is they are completing. The website navigation should focus on nudging the right visitor towards having a great experience on their site.

  • Favourable Bounce Rate

Bounce rate is the percentage of people who arrive on the website and leave without visiting a second page. A high bounce rate is an obvious sign of an out-dated and poorly performing site. Website users usually leave a site quickly without visiting other pages simply because they don’t find what they are looking for instantly or don’t like the look and feel of it.

Bounce rate of the website can be managed through Google Analytics, either as whole website or on a page by page basis. The bounce rate should be looked in the following areas, location, device, new vs. returning and medium i.e. email, social, organic etc.

  • Website Speed

Your website’s loading time plays a major factor in people’s decision of staying or leaving the site. There are tools which will help you figure the speed of the site and how long it takes to load. If the score is not up to par, then it is time to rethink all the elements on the website and think how to increase the speed. Quality of the images can often be a factor which can lead a site to slow down.

  • Reduce the risk of getting hacked

Articles about websites and social media feeds getting hacked are becoming more and more frequent. Security flaws can seek up on any website, new or old, but the likelihood of security flaws affecting an older website is much greater as it relies on older and less secured coding and technology.

  • Website Integration

Integrated websites are essential for delivering the requisite service levels. The audience will expect access to the blogs, contact forms, support forms and if applicable shopping functionality, all on one easy to use and navigate website. The user will require a single login and rapid access to accurate and timely information at all times.

Integrating the website with the back-office fulfilment, tracking, billing and CRM systems reduce the likelihood of mistakes and confusions. Many small businesses start out using a collection of open tools for different activities, only being forced to use a complex, error-prone and time confusing strategy involving manually copying information from one system to another.

A website refresh is a perfect way to find methods to save admin time and improve customer service. It is a great marketing opportunity which helps in putting the brand out there while spreading its core message. It is essential to make sure that the audiences are informed about the refreshed website through emails, newsletters, social media platforms etc.

In summary, the above information highlights the most important and common signs to look out for when you want to know if the site is becoming out-dated and requires a fresh look. We are BrandYou keep on updating our website with the latest technology and design to stay up-to-date with the current trends.

From designing to execution, we help you in every step. Our team of expert designers create mock-ups from which the client can choose and finalize the design of their liking. Following this our team of developers use top website setups to create the website of your dreams and also helps in hosting the site. We are with you all the way!

To know if you need an update or refresh Contact BrandYou.ie for your website design & development needs. Let’s plan a project together!

 

References:

https://wordpress.com/go/digital-marketing/want-to-rebrand-try-a-website-refresh/

https://www.granite5.com/insights/14-reasons-why-you-need-to-update-your-website/

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