Technology and the marketing that depends on it is constantly changing and evolving, even in Anchorage, Alaska. This puts us in a position of needing to stay current with the best practices that apply to us. One of those foundational principles is that your website should be one of your strongest marketing tools. Think of it as your digital storefront; a storefront that has now become as important as your physical one. And if you don’t have a physical storefront, then your digital one really better be on it’s “A” game. Here are 10 telltale signs that you need to redesign or at least update your website.
It’s “Been a While”
If this is your response to the question: “When was the last time you updated or looked at your website?” then it is pretty much a guarantee that you need a resign or at least a facelift. Here are some items you can take a look at updating on your site:
- New services or products
- New staff
- New location
- New or updated photo of your building, staff, products, etc.
- Events you and staff have participated in
- Awards and recognition
- Update your project portfolio
You Have a Branding Disconnect
It isn’t uncommon for a company’s branding or their mission to evolve over time. It is even more likely that their target audience has changed along with some of their services or products. Maybe there’s even been a change of ownership in your company. If any of these options is the case with your business, it is important to take a look at your website to make sure the look, offerings, and even the “feel” of the site still reflects your company.
You Get Frustrated Updating or Adding Content
Chances are if your website was designed a while back, it was not done in a platform that makes it easy for you to update content. Some companies also run to the frustrating scenario of having their website held hostage by the business that designed it for them. In today’s website world, you should always have administrative rights to your site and be able to make edits any time you want.
Your Site has a High Bounce Rate
The bounce rate on a website reflects how many people get to your site and “bounce” off of it almost as quickly as they get there. Several factors play into bounce rates:
- Maybe it wasn’t the site they meant to click on
- The look and feel isn’t current, so visitors make the assumption that the information is not credible
- Visitors can’t find what they are looking for quickly.
You have about 4 seconds to capture a visitor; that is the extent of the average person’s attention span when it comes to your site. So it is critical you capture their attention and provide them with a way to interact with your site inside those 8 seconds.
Your Site Isn’t Mobile Friendly or Responsive
The term coined for mobile friendly websites is a responsive website. This means that the website responds to the size of the screen the viewer is using and adjusts the content accordingly. This way the information is easily accessible and visually legible regardless of the size of the screen. Google made a big announcement back in April of 2015 and made it very clear that they will penalize any website that was not a responsive website. This means that Google will bury your website in its search engine rankings, and basically no one will ever find it. Also, mobile use has skyrocketed in many of the remote regions of Alaska. Why run wires when a cell phone with a data plan can do everything faster. So your website needs to look good and work well on a mobile device from Anchorage, Alaska to Barrow, Alaska.
Your SEO (Search Engine Ranking) is Low or NonExistant
If your website is not ranking well on Google or other search engines and people are having a hard time finding it, that is a serious sign that you need to redesign it or revamp it right away. Your website has the potential to be one of the best marketing tools in your whole arsenal, but if it isn’t kept current, you are wasting a great resource. Search engine algorithms change and evolve and a dated website could be breaking new rules and hurting your SEO. Also, Google looks for websites with current information. One of the best ways to do that is with blogs. But if your site has been static for months or even years, it’s time for some fresh content.
Visitors to Your Website aren’t Converting to Customers
Getting visitors to your site is a great first step, but if those people aren’t turning into customers at some point, then something is wrong with your site, and you need to take a look at it. For example, can people click on your phone number on your site from their phone and call you? It’s a simple enough thing to have your on your website, but a big thing for visitors who want to convert, who want to call you. If they can’t do it easily, they are more likely to move on to a competitor.
You are Still Using Flash
Flash sites were a big fad for a while, and they did lend themselves to some beautiful designs, but with the rise of iPhones especially, Flash sites went the way of the Dodo bird. Flash and Apple apparently decided not to play nice, and none of the iPhone will ever show Flash sites so no one with an iPhone can see the content on your website. Plus search engines focus on the content (the words) on a site to rank that site. Flash sites don’t show content in a way the search engines can recognize so that they won’t rank the sites, and your site gets buried on the millions page of a Google search.
Visitors Can’t Easily, and Quickly Understand What you Do
Remember our 8-second rule? No matter what, it is vital that your visitors understand know what you do quickly. They need a reason to stay and dig deeper into your website. No matter what page they land on in your website, they need to be able to get information quickly and succinctly. So if your website isn’t user-friendly, if it is not easy to navigate, if it does not adhere to current UI (user interface) principles, you need to update or redesign your site. Your visitors in Anchorage, Alaska or where ever they are from, are much more likely to find your site, stay on your site, get good information from your site, and convert to users or customers because:
- your site has as been updated recently
- your site is consistent with your branding and product or service offerings
- you have updated the content recently (because it is easy to do so)
- you captured their attention in the first 4-seconds, and they didn’t bounce
- your site is mobile friendly
- you have good SEO rankings, so they found your site quickly
- you made it easy for them to convert
- your site is NOT Flash
- your visitors can easily and quickly understand what you do
If any of the above statements reminds you of your site, we do recommend you talk to a professional who can guide you through the process of getting a website launched that becomes a productive marketing tool for your business. We would be happy to be that professional, and if you want to chat about the options out there, we would love to talk shop. Call 907-563-6008 and ask for Jennifer or Adrienne.