Seven Reasons Why You Need to Update Your Website in 2020
By Stephanie Ball
It is common knowledge that having a website is one of the most effective ways to market your business, and, if done right, a website gives the best return on your investment. However, if you don’t update your website to stay current, you are undoubtedly missing out, and not allowing your website to reach its fullest ROI potential.
How do you know if your website needs a refresh? Here are seven reasons why your website may need to be updated.
1. Your website lacks visual appeal or doesn’t reflect your brand (or both!)
Your website is a direct representation of your business, and first impressions are everything. As an extension of you and your brand, if it looks outdated and awkward, the automatic assumption, even if subconsciously, will be that you are also outdated and awkward. By the same logic, if your site is easy to navigate and looks polished, you will have immediately established yourself as competent and professional.
2. You are not coming up at the top in web searches.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the act of tagging and updating your site so that it comes up in searches on sites like Google. Since search engines are constantly updating their algorithms (the formula used to determine what websites come up in their search results) to provide the most relevant search results possible, it is important to stay up-to-date, or your site will become further and further behind thousands of others. If you aren’t showing up in web searches, you are missing out on potential leads and your customers will not find you.
3. Your website has an outdated theme and technologies or it loads slowly.
Technology is constantly changing and growing. Web standards change yearly and trends evolve monthly. What is popular today, may be historic tomorrow. If you built your website a year ago and haven’t worked on it since, it is probably already behind. The longer it has been since an update, the further behind it is. Many technologies and features that were widely used previously (like Flash or videos and music that autoplay when your site loads) are not only obsolete, but they crash, load slowly, and are irritating to your site visitors.
4. Your website isn’t mobile friendly.
A few years ago it was common practice to put all of your most important and relevant information “above the fold” which means that you would have the relevant material visible without requiring any scrolling. Now, the majority of visitors are using mobile devices like smartphones and tablets which encourage scrolling. Because the predominance of users are on mobile devices, if your website is not visually appealing and easy to use on a phone or table, you need to redesign your site to accommodate your visitors.
5. Your security is outdated.
In all honesty, any website can be hacked. But older websites that rely on outdated technology are much easier to hack and therefore more likely to suffer a breach. It is imperative that you protect your visitors not just for their safety (credit card and identity theft can be life altering), but also for your brand’s integrity. A hacked website can turn into a PR and legal nightmare!
6. Your Bounce Rate is high.
In the web world, content is king, and design is the queen. Their marriage is what makes an incredible site. But if you’ve knocked both content and design out of the park and you’re still not getting leads, something else is wrong. It is time to look at your analytics. The “Bounce Rate” of a site is the percentage of people who leave your website after only visiting one page. Having a high bounce rate is a bad thing. It means that you didn’t capture your audience and they left. It is similar to walking into a restaurant and looking at their menu, and leaving without sitting down to eat. If the menu isn’t appealing to your web visitors, they’re not going to pay for lunch!
This brings us to our last reason:
7. Your website is ineffective!
The bottom line is that if you’re not getting leads from your website, something needs to change. Even if you believe you have the best website in the world, if it isn’t bringing you any ROI, it isn’t doing its job and needs some work.
Your website is too important to let fall behind the times. With changes in technology, design trends, and cultural needs, your website should never be a “set it and forget it” tool. Whether you work on your website yourself, or you hire somebody else to manage it, staying on top of your web presence is vital to your success.