Outdated websites are everywhere. What’s the harm you might ask? Well, an outdated website can impact your credibility. It can cost you sales as customers may buy from a competitor whose website is easier to use on a mobile device. Also, older websites are often not optimized for today’s search. Investing in your website means investing in the credibility of your brand. Could your website use a redesign? Here are seven questions to help you answer this question and to tell you what you probably already know.
Does it work on a mobile device?
In other words, is your website responsive or mobile friendly? If your answer is no, you have a problem According to Google, more searches are now performed on mobile than on desktop. It is more important than ever to have a website that is easy to view on any device. Having a responsive or mobile-friendly website that is easy for users to navigate will not only contribute to a more positive user experience but is now a major ranking factor with Google.
Is your navigation intuitive?
User experience has grown in importance, particularly over the last few years. Can visitors find what they need when they come to your website? Or, are they overwhelmed by navigation options, or frustrated with the lack of them? Modern websites work to keep navigations simple and clean. This means having your main navigation items at the top, often removing any sidebars, and relying on clear calls to action and internal linking to help users navigate deeper into your website.
Does the design feel crowded and busy?
Older websites tend to have very crowded, busy homepages. It’s difficult to find things. A simple design with white space, created with mobile in mind, is essential. White space doesn’t have to be white in color. It’s just those areas on your website that remain unfilled, allowing the most important content to stand out.
Is the font too small and hard to read?
Fonts should be easy to read (no less than 11pt regardless of the typeface) and need to be easy to view on both mobile and desktop. Keep it clean, avoiding fonts that are extravagant or unnecessarily curvy or loopy. Using many different fonts is also not recommended. While using different fonts for headers, sub-headers and body text is common practice, more than three is too many.
Does your website use Flash?
Flash is a common sign your website needs some serious attention. The majority of mobile devices and tablets don’t support flash and search engines have problems scanning it. Today, web developers typically create animation with HTML5 as it is supported on both desktop and mobile.
Is your website branding inconsistent with other marketing channels?
Everything from your social media channels, trade show exhibit, landing pages and printed marketing materials should be consistent with your website. So, if your website looks and feels outdated, there’s a likelihood that you’ve begun to shift the branding on other channels. If your Facebook page is more what you want your branding to be than your homepage, it’s time for a redesign.
Can you easily update your content?
Lacking the ability to easily go in and update content, or add new pages, without the help of a web developer, is another clear sign that you’re due for a redesign. Most websites today are built using Content Management Systems (CMS) such as WordPress. These systems make it easy for non-coders to go in and make simple updates and post new pages. Not too long ago, just having a website was enough to add credibility to your brand. Today, you need to have a website that is not only contextually accurate but visually updated and built for mobile devices. So if you answered “yes” to the majority of the questions above, it’s time to seriously consider redesigning your website. Contact us for help getting your website up to date.
Post by Dianne Newton-Shaw