How to Know When it’s Time for a New Website
Fallen out of love with your website and suffering from a bad case of website envy? Don’t worry – you’re not alone. It happens to us all. Web design trends change over time, and it’s important to refresh your website to keep up with customer expectations and to remain current with the latest styles and technology that give your business an edge.
Your website is your ‘shop window’ after all. If it looks old-fashioned, dull or is difficult to navigate, then you’re hardly going to entice visitors to linger for longer and convert into paying customers.
Designing a new website can seem daunting or even unneccesary. You may think that your current website it fine and a new one will be expensive, time consuming, complicated or impact sales. However, letting a company like Aspurian Digital manage the project with you, takes away all of the hassle, and provides the ROI that your business is missing out on. Your website shouldn’t be static; set-up and then left to sit deep in the midst of the world wide web. It needs to be regularly updated, provide fresh content and genuinely offer something that benefits internet users. You can read more about how to improve your website SEO in our previous blog posts.
So the next question is, how do you know when it’s time for a website redesign. Read on for some tell-tale signs:
A high bounce rate
The bounce rate of a website is the percentage of single interaction visits to a website. This indicates the number of visitors who land on your website and then quickly click off – without visiting any other pages. The average bounce rate is from 40 to 55 percent so if your rate is higher it’s time to think about doing something about it. You can check out your site’s bounce rate by looking at Google Analytics.
No fresh content
Adding new pages to your website (in the form of blog posts) is a great way to get your site ranked higher up on Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). Adding new products or service offerings and promotions is another way to do this, of course, but blogs are an excellent – and easy – way of updating your website on a regular basis. A weekly blog, for instance, can really make a difference. It can also encourage visitors to return – especially if your content is useful, interesting or humorous. One study, by internet marketing authority Hubspot, found that websites that had 16 pages of new content a month received three times more visitors.
It’s not mobile optimised
Most people visit websites via their mobile phones these days. If your website doesn’t have a responsive mobile design then it’s not mobile optimised and that means you risk losing visitors. That’s because it’ll prove too difficult to navigate and some of the functions may not work properly. Most websites are mobile optimised these days. If yours isn’t, then it’s definitely time to do something about it.
The loading time is too long
This is one way to quickly lose potential visitors to your site. Everything happens so quickly on the internet these days and people have got used to instant reactions. If your site takes longer than even three seconds to load then you could be in trouble. By that we mean visitors will simply abandon your site and go look at a competitor’s instead. Definitely something you want to avoid!
Poor Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Title tags, meta descriptions, keywords, internal and external linking – it all counts towards how high your site will be ranked in the big search engines. And it’s not just Google we’re talking about – all search engines, such as Bing and Yahoo all use SEO techniques to rank websites. If you’re confused about this aspect of your website (and many people are) then you can always get in touch with an SEO specialist company like ourselves. Once you understand the basics, it’s easy enough to work on this yourself.
It’s not HTTPS secured
Without a HTTPS certificate, your website is not ‘secure’ in the sense that your visitors’ private information could be stolen. HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure. This is an encrypted network communication protocol which can scramble any data either to or from your website. When your site is secure a padlock icon will appear in the browser. When it’s not it will be marked as ‘non-secure’ – which can put many potential visitors off. And, in fact, their browser may not even allow them to access your site.
There are dead links
Another aspect that can negatively impact your conversion rates, is when visitors are encouraged to link through to pages that don’t exist, which can prove extremely frustrating. Instead of seeing what they want, they get a 404 error message. The result? They leave your website and go elsewhere for the information instead. It’s worth just taking an hour or two out of your day to check all the links on your website and if there’s any that aren’t working them redirect them to a relevant ‘live’ page instead. There are tools that we can use to always scan your website and ensure that there are no 404 redirects negatively impacting your SEO, as Google will penalise you for this.
Your website needs to be user friendly with a clear and easy customer journey to get from A to B without having to click through to numerous irrelevant pages first. If it isn’t then you risk losing visitors who will get fed-up having to work it all out for themselves.
An ineffective call to action
You’ve probably heard the term CTA (call to action). You’ll often find this at the bottom of a blog post or product page and it is usually a button or link which is used to navigate the user to where you want them to go next, for example, ‘buy now’ or ‘next step’.
Too many technical issues
A website which isn’t working properly is not only time-consuming for you, but it means you’re losing sales because potential customers can’t access it. This also makes your business look unprofessional and untrustworthy. The thing to do here is to find another host provider – a more reliable one! Either that or consider a new content management system or shopping cart provider. One reason you’re getting technical issues could be because your site has grown so much and your current web host simply can’t cope, or vital updates haven’t been made.
If you recognise any of the above difficulties (or even several of them) then it’s definitely time to rethink your current website.
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