It goes without saying that doing maintenance work on your physical property isn't a one-time thing. You've got to continually mow the lawn, dig up weeds, change smoke detector batteries and more.
Failing to do this will quickly turn your property into an unsafe environment no one wants to stay in for too long.
Things are no different with digital real estate.
Leaving your site neglected can have a major negative impact on business; according to Blue Fountain Media, 81% of internet users say they think less of a business if their website has not been properly maintained. (1)
Unlike with physical real estate, however, web design issues aren't necessarily as easy to identify as weeds or an unruly lawn.
In this article, we'll explore five easy-to-miss signs it's time to contact a web design company and have your site tweaked – or even completely overhauled.
Web Design Red Flags: 5 Signs It's Time To Overhaul Your Website
Sign #1 – Visitors Aren't Looking Around
The key metric to pay attention to here is your bounce rate. This rate represents the percentage of visitors who leave your website after only viewing a single page.
Standard practice within the industry is to view a bounce rate of 70% or higher as concerning.
Not only does it mean your website isn't captivating visitors enough for them to learn more about your company; it also tells Google and other search engines that your site is of low quality, pushing you down in rankings.
There are a number of factors that can contribute to a high bounce rate – not the least of which is poor or outdated web design.
Pay particular attention to your site's mobile experience.
With an increasing percentage of web visitors arriving from mobile devices, you need to be consistent in making sure that your web design keeps up with the ever-shifting mobile content formats.
You might know your content is great and totally worth suffering through a clunky viewing experience for, but your potential readers won't stick around long enough to find that out.
Sign #2 – Visitors Are Constantly Asking You For Help
Maintaining an open line of communication with your website visitors (whether through a feedback form or dedicated support staff) can alert you to many issues that may have gone unnoticed otherwise.
If you find that people are constantly asking you for help with locating something on your site, it may be time to give your web design a refresh.
The unfortunate reality is that, for every visitor who took the time to reach out for assistance, there are several more who just left and went to a competitor's site to find that they were looking for. So take this sign very seriously!
Sign #3 – Your Website Is Not Bringing You Business
With so many tracking tools available, it's remarkably easy to measure exactly where your business is coming from.
If you've invested a lot of time, energy and money into your website only to have it deliver disappointing results (or worse – it once delivered good results but is now rapidly dying), it's time to have a web design agency take a look at it.
Sign #4 – Your Website Is More Than Three Years Old
Among experts, the general consensus is that a web design more than three years old needs an overhaul. This timeframe – provided you carry out occasional tweaks in between – allows you to remain competitive.
As mentioned earlier, design trends, particularly when it comes to mobile devices, are always changing.
Devices get bigger, giving you more real estate to spread your content out on. Platforms like Facebook Instant Articles come along. New plugins are created.
All of these changes can, and do, happen within a three year period. Your competitors are doing their best to keep up with the times – make sure you are as well!
Speaking of your competitors...
Sign #5 – Your Competitors All Seem To Be Updating Their Websites
If you're still rocking a website you built several years ago while your competitors have gone through one or two, or maybe even three, designs, it's time for a refresh.
Even if you think you have a better grasp on the offline market than your competitors, you could be doing so much better if your outdated design wasn't prompting visitors to check out another business.
Bonus Sign: You Don't Want To Work On Your Website
If your website has gotten so clunky that you dread making even the smallest of changes, it's a sure sign that things could use a refresh.
Your site's content management system may have been state-of-the-art five years ago but, as with your site's front end, things can get stale and outdated very quickly.
A new design won't just make things easier for your visitors and potential customers; it'll make things easier for you as well!
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