Posted On 28 Apr 2021
Minul Wimalagunaratne

More than ever before, you need to have a digital presence. Your website should be the starting point for your online strategy. It should be the solid foundation on which all of your other digital touch-points are build upon. So why do so many small businesses not make the proper investment in theirs? Here are the 10 tell-tale signs that you need a new website.

The starting point for any business is a website. A good one will enable you to compete effectively, it will build trust with your customers and it will pave the way for a smooth customer journey from the awareness stage, right through to retention and nurture. A bad website? Well, you can definitely kiss all of that goodbye. 

What Does A Good Website Look Like?

 

Businesses can (and do!) spend small fortunes building beautiful, intricate websites that become the keystone to their brand. And that’s great – if you can afford it! But many small businesses don’t have the capital to invest like this. Or, they only invested 3 to 5 years ago and can’t consider doing that again so quickly. If you measure your website based on the best websites out there, you’ll always come off second best. There will always be a website out there prettier than yours, or more high-tech than yours. But is that really what you need to be worrying about?

For a website to be successful however, functionality is just as important (if not more!) then looks. From an SEO perspective, Google have repeatedly told us that user experience is just as important as key words for determining Search Engine Results Pages (SEPRs) rankings. At the end of the day, your customers really don’t care how much you paid a graphic designer to work on the aesthetics of your site. They just want a quick and easy journey from A to B. 

The Trouble With Band-Aid Fixes

 

A website is not simply a one time pay-and-go investment. It is a living, breathing business organism and its health needs to be constantly monitored. It needs to be constantly evolving to ensure it remains fast, it keeps up with your customers requirements and supports as much of the new tech available as possible.

Depending on the usability of your initial website, there may be ways that your development team can work to keep your website refreshed. But as the tech in this space rapidly changes, and as more and more plug-ins are added to your site, the end result will be a heavier, clunkier and slower webpage. And it can start to actually do more damage to your business than good!

The hard truth is… If your website has been online for 3+ years you probably need to update it.

When Do You Need A New Website?

 

If your website has any of the issues below, then it is probably time to consider a brand new website.

1. High bounce rate

Bounce rate is when visitors come to your site but only visit the first page they land on before leaving. They don’t click on another page or engage with any of your Call To Actions (CTAs). It could be that they didn’t find what they are looking for, but it could also mean your website was too slow. And what does too slow mean? Generally, a 3 second load time is the maximum wait time that the average visitor will put up with. Yep, that’s all!

Giving your site a redesign can solve speed issues and convince visitors to stay longer. If you have a bounce rate of more than 70 to 90% on your site, then you should consider doing an update.

2. Slow page load speeds

Older sites will always have loading page issues. Most visitors to a site want what they want, when they want it. Which is straight away! They will not hang around waiting for your site to load. Therefore, slow load speeds will increase the bounce rates.

3. Your site doesn’t reflect your brand

Your brand will change with time and your website needs to evolve with it. The first impressions matter if you want to reduce the bounce rates. Your visitors should remember your site for being well-designed, aligns with your message, and speaks their pain points. And remember, 92% of first time visitors to a website are there just to check things out. If they don’t like what they see, that’s a lot of potential customers you’re missing out on.

4. Your site looks old

If you have not updated your website for a decade, then it’s well past due for a re-build. If your site has old flashing graphics, numerous out-of0-date font styles and a range of conflicting colour schemes, the damage could be far greater than reduced profits. It could end up tarnishing your brand’s reputation! You need to follow the current website standards, as well as the fashions and trends in your industry. Helpful Tip: Take a look at your competitor’s website and assess your web design against theres. Because your customers sure are!

5. It has been more than 3 years since your last update

A website needs to keep up with the technological trends. You have to keep tweaking your site to make sure it stays current with the latest design trends. For instance, if your site doesn’t have a secure sockets layer (SSL), then you need to fix that. Is your web development team constantly monitoring things like this? Do they provide you with an annual audit of your page? These are things that should definitely be happening.

6. You can’t update the content yourself

If you depend on a web developer to make changes to the content on your website (adding blog posts, adding media etc), then you are spending way more money than is necessary. Look for a content management system (CMS) that allows you to take control of your website.

7. Confusing website navigation

Having numerous menu options on your navigation bar, makes it hard for visitors to figure things out. You should make it easy for your visitors to understand where they need to click to find out information about your products and services.

8. Poor lead conversion rates

If your site isn’t getting leads, then it’s time for an upgrade. Poor conversion rates can be due to any of the above reasons like your site being too old, confusing navigation, and slow load speeds among others.

9. Your site isn’t mobile-friendly

Mobile website traffic makes more than half of the web visits around the world. If your site is not mobile-friendly, you could be missing out on potential visitors. You need a website that is deigned for mobile first as this will help with user engagement.

10. No inbound marketing

Having a website is not enough, you need to optimise it for inbound marketing. If you don’t have compelling copy and a good blog, you won’t be reaching the people that you need to. An inbound site has content that attracts and engages visitors. Not only this, it attracts the right kind of visitors and then turns them into customers. The result is multiple lead conversion that helps your business grow.

Did you find yourself nodding along to more points in this list than you care to admit? Perhaps you need someone to conduct an audit of your site to see where the main problem points are? A website shouldn’t stand alone. It should be the central pillar of your business strategy. But in order to do this, it needs to work. At Oracle Tree, we design simple and elegant websites that have speed and UX (user experience) is at the forefront. Get in contact with us today and let’s chat about yours!

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What could you do if your business simply… worked?

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