Think of how easy it is to keep an apartment looking current through accent pieces. Throwing in a few brand new, flashy décor pieces is enough to make your place look glossier, right? Well, maintaining a website is nothing like maintaining an apartment. In fact, when it comes to your site, stitching new things together can throw the whole look off.
When your site is your business and your business is your site, you should be on the lookout for these tell-tale signs indicating that you need a major redesign. If you answer no to two or more than one of the questions below, it may be time to call a design (and dev) team!
Does my site look current?
Be honest – does it look outdated? And not in a cute, retro kind-of-way. More like it was made back in a time where mobile wasn’t the bread and butter of digital publishing and social media referrals weren’t a staple on your Analytics figures.
Online user behaviour patterns keep changing, and that means if your design is out-of-date, readers will not stick around for too long. They will just bounce off and look for a user-friendlier blog to engage with.
Is the design trustworthy?
Good looks matter and you don’t want to alienate new readers or sponsors with a website that looks sketchy – that is, it has mismatched design elements, lacks proper navigation, or features low-quality images.
Did you know that 94% of people named “design” as the reason they mistrusted or rejected a website? Now you do 😉
It’s only logical that readers won’t stick around for too long if they don’t know where to go. A site without a strong menu structure creates a problem for visitors (navigating your digital maze) instead of solving it (accessing valuable content).
Does it ooze credibility?
If you’ve ever visited a website and judged it by the lack of contact details, About page, or bio info – then you know. Being inaccessible or not describing who you are looks sketchy on all types of websites – but in the lifestyle publishing industry not only does it look unprofessional, it also doesn’t do you any favours building your online authority!
Share who you are and what you do, and do it candidly. If you need a brand new FAQ page to bring this to life, then so be it!
Does it kick ass on mobile?
Google is planning to rollout mobile-first indexing this year. The search algorithms will evaluate the mobile version of a website’s content to rank it accordingly, instead of assessing the desktop version as they do now. So if your website is not optimized for mobile, you cannot wait any longer to upgrade it!
Regardless of this technicality, be self-critical when looking at your mobile site: we’re not talking ‘barely readable/acceptable’ on mobile. Long are the days where mobile visits where only sporadic, so beyond being mobile-friendly your site should be mobile-amazing. You know first hand the impact a really engaging layout has when you land on a game-changer mobile site on your small screen, so make yours one of them.
Is it scalable and adaptable to my needs?
Let’s face it – some website creation tools are just better than others. Over 76.5 million blogs are self-hosted on WordPress, rather than some other platforms such as Wix, Blogger, Weebly or similar ones.
The long-term issue with free website builders (or even their premium versions) is that their functionality may be limited, the SEO functionality is non-existent, and they restrict your business growth. You cannot really customize your blog to give it a unique look and you will be very restricted with adding additional integrations such as email opt-in forms, social media sharing tools and so on.
Choose a Content Management System that gives you the chance to scale and grow!
Do I love it?
Because above all (trends, metrics, competitors) what matters the most is that you love your site and that it represents who you are as an online authority.