Recently we took a call from a prospective client who was unsure if he needed to have his company’s website redesigned. The company’s clients have recently started to complain about the website – issues such as slow load times, information was becoming hard to find, and the website wasn’t responding well to mobile devices. We asked the client when the last time the website was redesigned, to which he responded, 2009. Yes, he definitely needed a redesign.
Every year there are significant advances in website functionality. That’s not to say you need a website redesign every year, but you should be aware of what new functionality and features are available to you. At Rebel Trail, we always keep our clients informed of what’s new in the world of website development, and how the new functions and features may be of benefit to their website. Often, upgrading to these new features does not involve a full redesign, usually it’s just a tune up or ‘face lift’. However, if a client lets many years of these new functions slip by, then it can be more difficult to implement them, and a full redesign may be necessary.
On average, you should consider a redesign every 3 – 6 years depending on the size, popularity, and functionality of your website. This will keep the design fresh and the functionality current. You always want to stay one step ahead of your competition, so it’s a good idea to schedule a review of your competitor’s websites at least every quarter. Your potential customers will be looking at your competitor’s websites so you should always know how your website compares.
If your company goes through any kind of re-branding initiative, or even changes their logo, this is a good time to revamp the website as well. You always want to ensure that your marketing is consistent through all your platforms, so if a change is made on one platform, it should be made for them all. Certainly, if your website is not responsive you should immediately seek a redesign initiative. Responsive websites are those that automatically change their layout depending on the device that views it. In this case a website will look different on a desktop computer versus a mobile phone. Even Google now penalizes websites that are not responsive, so potential customers will have a harder time finding you if your website does not have this feature.
If it’s been over 5 years since your last website redesign, you’ll also want to look at your hosting – specifically if your web server has not been upgraded in that time. Web servers do have a limited shelf life, and the older they are, the more susceptible they are to performance issues, slow load times and crashes. Each time you redesign your website you should upgrade your hosting as well. Make sure you are on a modern web server that’s fully secure and uses today’s platform standards. Not only will this provide you with more functionality for your website, but your customers will enjoy the boost in speed and security.
At Rebel Trail, our websites are designed to stand the test of time, but that doesn’t mean they should! Your website should grow with your business and automate manual redundant tasks. It should attract customers like a super magnet, and streamline your communications and work flow processes. If it’s not, then perhaps its time to consider a redesign. To explore the benefits of a website redesign project, contact Rebel Trail today!