There are a few questions you need to ask yourself if you are trying to answer the question, “Do I need a new website?”
Every so often, we sit down in front of our computers, open our homepages and ask ourselves this: Do I need a new website? It is a tough question to answer. On the one hand, we tend to have a particular affinity for our website. We designed it and, in the case of small and medium-size business owners, hand picked all of the elements that went into it. To say that it is no longer useful or requires a major overhaul is hard to admit.
These are a few questions that we need to ask ourselves, as objective marketers, to determine whether or not we need to take that leap and completely redo (or update) our existing website.
Is your website responsive?
Today, it is significantly less expensive to develop a completely responsive website than it used to be. That said, it can still cost a pretty penny.
People want a seamless and optimized experience on every device that they are using. So, if your website is not responsive and is completely warped on non-desktop (i.e. mobile) devices, you’ll leave a bad taste in the mouths of visitors to your site on those devices.
If your site, like so many others, is built with WordPress, finding a responsive template can be an easy fix. That said, if you’re looking to add some serious customization, it can start to take some time and the costs will definitely shoot up.
To check if your site is responsive (or, rather, how responsive your site is) you can take a look at a tool called Responsive Design Checker.
Do you feature a clear call-to-action above the fold?
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These are all examples of very clear calls-to-action, and you need to review your site to see if it features at least one on every page, preferably above the fold.
Granted, not every site needs to have a call-to-action that bold right in the face of visitors. Sometimes a soft call-to-action can do wonders for conversion, leading to people taking action without even realizing it. That said, if you want to see conversion, you’ll want to ask for it.
So review your homepage and the most visited/important pages on your site. See if you’re asking people to take an action and, if not, where that call-to-action might be best suited.
Are your social profiles easily accessible?
Your social profiles should be readily accessible on every page, and it should be made very clear that they exist. Too often, websites insist on hiding social profile links in the footer of a website. They should be a much more prominent component.
Your social profiles need to be treated like the valuable assets they are. Your website visitors are more than likely going to research your brand on social media as thoroughly as they do on your website. So, you shouldn’t hide these profiles in order to maintain a level of transparency online.
And speaking of the importance of social…
Is your content easily shareable?
Today, social signals (links built through social sharing, or, social SEO) are among the most important criteria for building your brand’s online presence. If you have a blog or share important information on your website (which you more than likely do) you’ll want to be sure that this content can be shared to social media.
Whether you’re working on a CMS like WordPress, Drupal, Hubspot or you’ve built something customized, you’ll want to ensure that social sharing is fully integrated.
When you have valuable content on your website, you should be encouraging your audience to share it with these kinds of soft calls-to-action. Without social sharing capabilities, it will be that much more difficult to get your content out there and making the rounds in the socialsphere.
Do you have a mobile version/app of your site?
There is a difference between a responsive site (see the first question) and a mobile website. While you certainly want to have a responsive construct, you may also want to take it a step further and feature a mobile app for your mobile visitors to enjoy.
This can either be a native app or a web-based mobile app of your site. The difference here is really in the experience. You want people to easily navigate your content whether they are on a desktop or on their mobile device. The best way to do this is to have something that is easily navigable and features a whole bunch of mobile-specific elements.
While a purely responsive website that adjusts to the screen of a mobile device is a great, big step in the right direction, it is not the only step that needs to be taken to fully optimize your web presence.
So, do you need a website?
If you went through these questions and answered “No” to the majority, it might be time to start considering a website redesign.
The world of the web moves at lightning speed, and it can be hard to keep up. What works today might be obsolete tomorrow, but these are a few staples that need to be incorporated into any optimized website.
If you would like to discuss the development of a new website, or would like to know more about building a new website, feel free to contact t2 today!