Is your business overdue for a website redesign? Here are 7 ways to know…
1. It’s Not Mobile-Responsive
Google’ algorithm penalizes websites that aren’t mobile-friendly. If your website doesn’t function properly on tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices, you could be pushed down the search rankings on mobile. The algorithm update will affect mobile searches in all languages across all corners of the world.
Without mobile optimization, the danger is that your website could sink down Google’s search rankings like a stone. Not good. That means people using their mobile device to search for articles that you have written, services you specialize in or products you sell will likely be unable to find you unless your website functions smoothly on mobile devices. Be sure that your next website redesign is built on a mobile-friendly platform.
2. YOUR WEBSITE ISN’T CONVERTING VISITORS INTO PROSPECTS AND CUSTOMERS.
At a minimum, your website should have at least one conversion goal. If you have an online store, the main goal is to get visitors to buy your products. If you do email marketing, one of your goals should be to get people to join your email list. For some pages and blog posts, the goal could be to get people to click through to a different landing page or post.
Each page of your site should have a clear call-to-action, along with easy steps visitors can take to move forward and hire or buy from you. Consider adding three simple steps as a place to start:
- Download your latest eBook
- Register for your upcoming webinar
- Buy or call you now
Clear Calls-to-Action should be a primary focus when you’re mapping out your website redesign.
3. YOUR WEBSITE HAS A HIGH BOUNCE RATE
When someone visits a page on your site and immediately leaves without making a single click, that’s called a bounce. The typical business website has a bounce rate between 50 and 60 percent. Track your bounce rate in Google Analytics. Your goal should be 30 percent or less.
Reduce bounce rate in three simple steps:
- Place your X-Y-Z message on the left side of your Home Page, above the fold so visitors can quickly understand what you do
- Eliminate visual clutter on your content pages
- Present clear calls-to-action
4. YOUR SEARCH ENGINE RANKINGS ARE LOW
If you don’t optimize your website for search engines, you risk losing potential customers to your competitors because their websites will appear higher in search engine results than yours. In fact, according to research conducted by online advertising network Chitika, websites holding one of the top three spots for their keywords get the vast majority of visitors (62 percent of all searchers).
Search engines discover content by visiting websites and following links just like regular Internet visitors. But when search engines visit, they read the text on your pages (this includes your blog if you have one) and run it through an algorithm that tells them what topics each page is about. Then, these topics are mapped to big lists of similar keywords that visitors might use when they want to find content like yours. For instance, a blog post about “Cupcakes for Mother’s Day” might be mapped to words like “mom” and “cake” in addition to “cupcakes” and “mothers.”
During your website redesign, you can help search engines accurately understand what your pages are about by consistently using words that describe each page’s primary topic in important places like the page title, meta description, and within large text headlines on the page.
5. YOU DON’T HAVE A SECTION FOR A BLOG OR OTHER CONTENT MARKETING RESOURCES.
If your website has lots of pages covering all of the topics most important to your prospective customers (keywords), and lots of other website owners discovered your pages and created links to them from their pages (authority), then your website will rank very highly for your most important keywords.
The process of creating and promoting new content on your website — with the goal of ranking highly for new keywords — is called content marketing. Content marketing is the most effective technique for improving and maintaining high search engine rankings.
6. YOUR DESIGN LOOKS CLUTTERED AND/OR OUTDATED
It’s very easy to turn a visitor off to your website. If visitors arrive at your site and find images that look 10 years old or a layout that isn’t modern, they may leave right away. Image is everything when it comes to your website, regardless of what industry you’re in.
The following are standard UI (User Interface) principles that have been well researched and that can help insure your website keeps the attention of your visitors:
- Bite-sized chunks of information that are easy to scan
- Clear calls to action
- Simple and clean interface that is easy to navigate
- Important elements that are highlighted
- Clean design – takes the approach that “less is more”Are you images outdated? Is your menu bulky?
If your site hasn’t been touched in 2 years or more, chances are it’s time for a website redesign.
7. Your website has a slow load time
According to Wired, “47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less.” Slow load times are a sign that there is something technically wrong with your website and can also cause you to lose visitors and hurt your search engine ranking. If your website doesn’t load within three seconds, you need to have it checked out.