Ever wake up in a moment of sheer panic? Heart plummeting, you swing off the duvet covers and prop yourself up on an elbow. What have you forgotten and is it important enough to separate you from your mattress? Within seconds, you surrender to one of those surreal moments wherein yesterday’s task list has crept into your dream. “That’s right. I wanted to look into updating my website,” you remind yourself. Your heart slowly ascends from your gut back into its appropriate position (how far did it drop, you wonder, and is that even healthy?).
Good news – your nocturnal panic attack is fleeting and you can hit the snooze button. Even better news, you might be able to hit that snooze button twice. We’re helping you steady your heart rate and skip the research with 10 signs your website is outdated.
“It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”
— JOHN WOODEN
1. Your Website is Unresponsive
As of this past September, 91% of American adults owned cell phones. The same source suggests 63% of cell phone owners use their mobile devices to go online. Anyone visiting your site could be a potential lead and they could be coming from a mobile device. This might be your first and only impression. Make it a good one. If you think your first impression is weak, it’s time to update your website.
2. You Use Your Developer Too Often
Are you still calling your developer for every little change? It shouldn’t be that hard anymore. If you fit into this bucket, it might be a sign you need to update your website to a more flexible platform. If you’re a novice with all things Internet, you might still want help from a more technical person. That said, it shouldn’t take weeks for small updates or cost you thousands of dollars if you don’t need a completely custom website. The pieces have been built: WordPress, SquareSpace, ThemeForest. The list goes on. You just need to find the pieces you like and put them together.
3. Your Page Load Times are Slow
You should seriously consider updating your website if it takes more than a few seconds to load. This is on par with responsive websites. Say it with me: “You have one impression. Make it a good one.” Several variables impact slow site speeds: hosting, outdated or poor development, large images, etc. If it takes 30 seconds just to see your homepage, you probably lost your audience 27 seconds ago.
“The grass is greener where you water it.”
— DANIELLE LUEDTKE
4. Your Website Lacks Content
You love your website. Deep down, your website loves you, too. It’s just embarrassed to be seen with you right now. It resents that you haven’t given it anything new to wear in the last decade. Thankfully, websites don’t need years to grow out of this phase. Shower your website with affection in the form of new content. Creating content is one of the best things you can do to help others find your website online. Keep your audience coming back for more.
5. Your Website is Hard to Navigate
OK, so your site is responsive and it actually loads quickly. But where do your visitors go now though? I hate poor navigation menus almost as much as I hate nocturnal panic attacks. Your website’s visitors will thank you if you make the search for answers easy. If your site is confusing and hard to navigate, it’s time for an update.
6. You Have a Poor Page Ranking
Are your instincts telling you that this just isn’t working? You’re still receiving the same feedback from friends and family. The website looks OK to them, but you disagree. Something’s off and you can feel it. It’s not about the color of your website’s footer. It’s more. Take a look at your competitors’ websites. Are they ranking better in search engines? As mentioned, visitors shouldn’t need a GPS once they’ve landed on your site. They certainly shouldn’t need one to find you in the first place.
7. Your Website Has a Low Performance Rate
How well would your website rank if given a report card? Check out Google Webmaster Tools and Bing Webmaster Tools accounts for high level insight regarding your site’s overall health. Take a look into Google Analytics for an even deeper dive. Find out how often your website is appearing in search results and how frequently people are clicking it. Is your website playing well with others? If not, it might be time to update your website.
8. You Rarely Update Your Website
Don’t expect your website to educate itself. Like most things in life, your website needs a little TLC. You’ll need to participate in the success of your website. Invest in online advertising and write some content. If your website is starting to give you attitude, it’s time to give it an update.
9. You Have Little to No Social Media Activity
image by Elias Bizannes
Do you have a presence on any of the social media outlets? It might seem drastic – the idea of a website overhaul just because you don’t have a Facebook page. This is partly true. But, this list is to provide indicators that your website might need an update. People, and potential leads, converse via social media outlets every day and much of that conversation includes business recommendations. If you haven’t even thought about social media, it might be time to update your website.
10. You Haven’t Touched Your Website in a Year
Feeling out of touch with your website? You used to finish each other’s sentences. It was bliss. Things change though. Years pass and you find yourself taking the longer route home. You “forget” to call. Before you know it, Google Webmaster Tools is sending daily emails requesting your attention. Do you hear those whispers? They’re suggesting your website has upwards of 800 crawl errors. Don’t worry. Our lips are sealed. Your website is acting out though. For everyone’s sake, show it some love. If you haven’t visited your website in a year, it’s time to give it an update.
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