As you look at your website and try to determine if changes are needed, there are many factors to consider. Don’t worry. We’ve done a lot of the heavy lifting for you. Check out the list below of 5 reasons you may need a new website, and see if you’re due for an update.
1. Your website is 3-4 years old
Websites are “organic” and may show their “age” quickly. Due to the constant barrage of operating system, browser, platform and device upgrades, code can age like a living thing and because of this, issues will arise. As time passes, more maintenance and updates are required to maintain your site. Best practices call for a website redevelopment every 3-4 years, simply to keep up with an advancing world and evolving Internet. If your site is approaching this age, it may be time to consider a refresh.
2. Your website is not mobile responsive
As the proliferation of smart phones and tablets continues, it’s important to understand what this means for your current website. Phone and tablet users now expect the same fluid, stress-free web experience that they find on their desktop computers. If your site isn’t optimized for your mobile visitors, you’re falling behind, and fast.
Thankfully, we have responsive design. Responsive design is an architecture, design and coding technique enabling your site the power to adapt to a multitude of device types. Regardless of whether your visitor is using an iPad, a Nexus tablet, an Android phone, an iPhone or laptop, responsive design scales your site gracefully into an optimal configuration for the screen specifications.
Additionally, providing a solid option for your mobile visitors will now help you rank higher in search engine results. Just this past summer, Google announced that it will begin demoting websites in their mobile search results that are not optimized for mobile users.
3. Your CMS is outdated
If you’re like us, your Content Management System (CMS) plays a starring role in your day-to-day workflow. After all, providing relevant, timely content is now paramount to keeping your site at the top of search results, connecting regularly with your audience and staying relevant.
If your CMS is outdated or causing problems with your site content and aesthetics, it may be time for an update, or a even complete migration to a new system. Additionally, old Content Management Systems may be a risk to the security of your site.
Our advice is to make sure your CMS is up-to-date, and acts as the answer to your problems, not the cause. If your CMS is behaving badly, is dated, or you don’t have one at all, you probably need to rebuild your site, and build it on a solid, user-friendly Content Management System. There are a number of high-quality, user-friendly, open-source CMS platforms out there that can be tailored to your specific needs. Contact us to learn more about what CMS we would recommend for your business.
4. You’re saying too much
We know that you care deeply about your business, and we understand that there is a lot to say about it. However, it’s important to realize that your website should serve your audience first and foremost. When deciding on the type of content that should be on your website, we recommend keeping a sharp focus on your targeted visitor. Determine who your visitor is, why they are visiting your site, and what they need to know to get them to take action.
Enormous, sprawling websites are going the way of the Dodo bird. Your visitor wants specific information, to find that information quickly, and to move on with their day. Because of this, hyper-focused messaging and direct calls to action are now more important than ever.
In terms of SEO, your content needs to stay closely aligned with the content on the rest of your site, and in line with your page titles as well, or else the great and powerful Google will deem the page invaluable, rendering your hard work useless.
5. You’re not saying enough
A stagnant website is an ineffective website. The web (especially search engines) is now all about relevant, timely content, and delivering this fresh content to your audience as regularly as possible. Simply put, if you haven’t updated the content on your site since it launched in 2010, your visitors may think there is trouble in paradise. If you’re not providing content to your audience in the form of blogs, tweets, Facebook posts or Pins, you’re not proactively getting your message out.
Consistency of frequency in updating is as important as the actual message and content, especially when it comes to SEO. It’s imperative to update your content regularly, even if your website doesn’t have a blog (though we’d recommend it). If you do have a blog on your site, make sure it’s being utilized, as it’s almost more detrimental to have a blog that is never updated, than to not have a blog at all.
If you fall into any of the above categories, give Paradigm a call. We will help you and your team work through any issues you are facing and determine the best course of action for your group to improve your online presence.
About Paradigm New Media Group
Founded in 1995, Paradigm has been on the leading edge interactive media for more than 17 years. We focus on developing strategies and tools for communicating online efficiently and effectively. This core belief drives our approach through the disciplines of design, usability and strategy.