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Do I Need a New Website?

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Force 5 Web Design

Do you need a new website?  I surveyed the team here at Force 5, asking them each for 2 or 3 signs that someone might need to update their web presence. Some of their responses are based on functionality, some on user experience, and some on overall look-and-feel, but here are their answers:

Christian Mattix

Christian Mattix

Web Application Developer & Network Administrator

1. Your website doesn’t work on mobile devices / small screens

According to a study by Google, having a website that isn’t mobile-friendly can have a big impact on your business.  It is important that your visitors experience your website as you intended, not matter what type of device or monitor they view it on. (read more)

2. Your website uses Adobe Flash

The use of Adobe Flash in website design is quickly fading.  One reason is that Flash is not supported by Apple, so it does not work on Apple iOS devices like the iPhone and iPad, which account for about 55-60% of mobile web traffic.  Another reason for this demise is that information in Flash is not easily indexed by search engines like Google, so using Flash can have a negative effect on your website’s search rankings.

Aaron Greene

Aaron Greene

Designer & Developer

3. Your website is extremely slow to load

The time is takes for your webpages to load is important to the overall user experience, and users have indicated that they don’t have the patience for slow page loading speeds. An article at Kissmetrics reveals that:

- 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less
- 40% of people abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load.
- 75% of consumers are willing to visit competitor sites instead of dealing with a slow loading page.

Additionally, search engines like Google have indicated that site speed will be factored in to their search rankings.

4. Your website isn’t built on a CMS

Most modern websites are built on Content Management Systems (CMS) platforms like Drupal or WordPress, which make it easy for you to keep information on your website current and provide your users with the most up-to-date info about your company. Search engines also look favorably on websites that continue to have fresh content.

In the past, websites were often hand-coded by a third-party web development companies, and if you ever needed any information on your website changed, you would have to you’d have to ask them (and pay them) to make the changes.

By using a CMS platform like Drupal, it is a lot easier for you to change information on existing pages, create new pages, add products, and share content.

5. Your website is still stuck in the Skeuomorphic design period

Website design seems to go through fads and phases.  What was popular a few years ago often becomes out-dated and an easily recognizable sign that your website needs to be updated.

David Morgan

David Morgan

Executive Producer & General Partner

6. Your website has animation of a construction guy and the words “Under Construction…Coming soon”

Aside from the tackiness, visitors aren't patient enough to wait until you get around to putting content on the pages.  They are looking for information, and if your website doesn't provide it, they are going to go somewhere else.

7.  Your website uses stock photography of smiling office people all looking at the camera.

Vince Vaughn The Guy who isn't as famous as Vince Vaughn

Your website is your chance to tell YOUR story and introduce YOUR people.  Don't use obvious stock photographs. Vince Vaughn and the cast of the movie Unfinished Business actually came up with a collection of image spoofing stock photos.

8. Website visitors can’t find an address or phone number or a form to fill out

Visitors want easy access to the information they need.  If they can't find what they are looking for in 2 or 3 clicks, they will move on to a competitor's site.

Beth North

Beth North

Business Developer

9. The graphic on the website home page causes nausea 

Go Bears!

Animated GIFs were fun in the 90s. Don't use them today.

10. The copyright at the bottom of the page is from > 5 years ago

An out-of-date © copyright at the bottom of the webpage is a good indication that the website has been neglected because it is usually a simple thing to update.  If visitors see a copyright that is old, it reflects poorly on your business.  If a company isn't able to keep a website current, it calls into question how much detail they put into other parts of their business.

11. The dark-haired CEO pictured on the landing page is now gray-haired, and follicly-challenged

Your website is often the first experience people have with your company. Your website is not just words on a screen; How it is designed and how it functions also leave an impression on your visitors.  How does your website stack up? If you are ready to start talking about a new website design, drop us a line, and we'll be in touch.