There is never a second chance to make a good first impression, and the same holds true for digital. Whether looking to implement a new brand, enhance a digital marketing strategy or improve security, a website update should be a top consideration for any modern marketer. After all, there is no better or more cost-effective way to capture leads, promote products & services, and appeal to your target audience than through a website.
We asked our entire team at Big Drop to come up with the 10 most important reasons to update a website, here are their responses:
When people come to your website, they see it as an extension of your company. Users will choose one brand over its competitors if it appears professional, contains useful information, and resonates with its target audience. A poorly designed, outdated digital property says the same about the company behind it.
We live in a smartphone society, spending way more time on our mobile devices than on laptops. When you consider Google’s upcoming mobile-first indexing update, ignoring the mobile market is very risky, so much so that making a website mobile-friendly with responsive design has become standard practice.
Responsive Web Design is a set of techniques that enable a website to flex and adapt to the size of the screen on which it is being viewed. Someone who visits your site on a smartphone may see the same content as someone who visits it on a laptop. It may make sense to design your website “mobile-first” if you haven’t updated your website in a while, you may be driving away mobile users and potential customers. For more information, check out our article on mobile-first design
Technique & Coding
When updating your site it is crucial that it is compatible with the latest versions of web browsers, your source code is valid (HTML and CSS), meets basic web standards, and leverages a current programming language. As websites mature and grow, it’s common to notice that certain elements stop working properly and become outdated.
Outdated websites also lack compelling calls-to-action that assist in converting visitors into paying customers or lower-funnel leads. A call-to-action (CTA) is a button or link on your website that helps visitors to become leads by taking specific actions on your property. To evaluate your CTA effectiveness, determine whether or not every landing page clearly displays your unique selling proposition and a corresponding call-to-action, and if both are compelling enough to persuade your visitor to take action.
With a correctly updated site, you should be able to assess your website’s effectiveness. An outdated site may lack the necessary tools for determining the effectiveness of your online presence. Heat-mapping, conversion tracking, and user recordings are simple and effective ways to judge how well your site is being used. Nowadays, you can invest in a variety of online tools that help track what works and what doesn’t, down to the smallest details. However, they can only be effective with a more current digital property.
Although the overall layout of a website creates the first impression, users typically visit sites to find useful information. A website redesign can help reimagine audience engagements. It’s critical to write copy that engages your audience while remaining succinct, minimal, and pertinent. With the average attention span lasting 2 to 4 seconds, the most important aspect of a website should be its content, as it determines how well it serves its purpose. Fresh and original website content is a major asset to encourage users to visit your site more frequently.
Alongside a website, reevaluating your overall digital marketing strategy may also be beneficial. Search engines like Google and Bing penalize outdated properties by reducing organic search ranking. Websites with the most recent content are considered the most relevant, but no matter how great your content may be, remember that it still has a shelf-life.
A website redesign also presents the opportunity to reconsider your keyword targeting and overall conversion rate. The way users search has changed dramatically in recent years, and will likely continue to change just as quickly with an increase in mobile device usage. The increase in usability in web design is an important factor to consider. Every year, web standards evolve dramatically, and website development techniques advance to meet the latest requirements. If your website was built several years ago, it most likely contains a lot of unnecessary HTML code that is slowing down your website’s load times, which has become a major contributor to domain ranking authority. Here’s what our team has to say about the importance of Search Engine Optimization.
User Experience (UX) refers to how efficient it is for visitors to use your site, including how fast it loads, how easy it is to find information, and how little friction there is when visitors attempt to complete whichever action they’re attempting. The navigation of your website should aim to guide the right visitor type to the must-have, designated experience.
Bounce Rate Reduction & Session Time
The percentage of visitors who come to your site and leave without visiting another page is known as the bounce rate. A high bounce rate indicates that a site is outdated or underperforming. Users usually leave a website quickly without visiting other pages because they can’t find what they’re looking for right away or they simply don’t like the way it looks. Understanding how long users’ sessions are, relative to your industry’s standards, is helpful in determining what opportunities your site may be able to take advantage of.
The time it takes for your website to load is a big factor in whether people stay or leave your site. Fortunately, there are multiple third-party tools that can help determine how to make changes that benefit your overall load score. If your score is low, you should reconsider the elements of your website that tend to drag down load speed. Images, other assets, and large files (i.e. videos) are frequently cited as common factors.