You've seen the commercials... “Get a website for Free. It’s easy, and you’ll have people finding you on the web in no time.”
If you believe those commercials, stop right now, there’s a guy up the street that has some REAL Rolex watches he wants to sell you.
Ted Nugent Called and He Wants His Website Back!
Most business owners have enough common sense to know that nothing is free. These companies suck you in with a free website, but lock you in for years of monthly payments to keep it up and running. And, heaven forbid if you want to make a change.
The problem is that they keep you stuck with an outdated and typically poorly-designed website because if you want to walk away from them, you have to start all over building a new website.
And, building a new website can be a very costly, time-consuming and difficult process.
Let’s face it, technology changes faster than my daughter's mind on what outfit she is wearing today. When you are busy running your business, keeping up with the ever-changing internet, putting out fires, making hundreds of little decisions every day, the last thing you want to tackle is making more decisions about website themes, color schemes and other elements of a web design process.
In addition to requiring a financial commitment, the website redesign process also involves time and attention, something that many business owners are short on.
Here’s the problem...If you bury your head in the sand and continue to operate with an outdated public image (your company website), you ARE missing out on opportunities, hurting your brand image and wasting your marketing efforts and money.
I’ll say it more bluntly...YOU ARE LOSING BUSINESS, AND YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW IT!
The problem is that websites and internet search marketing have evolved over the last several years; it is no longer good enough for you to have the outdated web catalog that most small and mid-sized businesses have out there.
It is estimated that there are 100 billion internet searches per month – AND THAT IS JUST FROM GOOGLE!
If you haven’t touched your site in a while, there are five signs that you really want to take a closer look at and consider a redesign.
1. Your Site Is Designed For Old Monitors
Back in the olden days, say the early to mid-2000’s, we designed sites for the standard 600 x 800 resolution monitors. You know, those heavy monstrosities that sent you to the chiropractor when you lifted them.
We did this to ensure that your site would be viewed without the user having to do much horizontal scrolling.
Then what happened?
Monitors got wider, then even wider, and then they got smaller. Then mobile exploded, then Apple came up with the iPad and then……YOU GET THE PICTURE.
Unfortunately, many of you have websites that are still designed using those old standards. And, quite frankly, it makes you and your brand look ancient.
2. Your Website Takes Too Long To Load
The speed at which your website loads is too important to ignore. Internet surfers have the attention span of a three-year old in a toy store.
If your website takes too long to load (think 3 to 5 seconds), you can kiss that prospect good-bye. They will be off to spend their money with your closest competitor, and your sales team will never get the chance to talk about all your differentiators, like customer service and price.
And the sad part is, you will never even know that the prospect came to your website and left.
3. Your Website Is Not Mobile-Friendly
Have you been in a restaurant lately? If so, you have seen entire families eating dinner where each one is tethered to their cell phone. If your site is not mobile-friendly , you are missing out on opportunities.
Mobile usage is growing, and your site needs to have a “responsive design.” This means that it automatically adjusts to fit the screen.
Mobile users love it and so does Google. In fact, Google will now penalize your website in its search rankings if your website is not mobile friendly.
4. Your Site Has No Call-To-Action or Specific Landing Pages
If you are lucky enough to keep that visitor on your site for longer than 6 seconds, how does your website work for you in terms of trying to convert that visitor into a lead?
As we mentioned above, websites can no longer be just pretty brochures of useless information about how great you are and what great products you have. People just don’t care.
You have to offer the visitor something of value and use Call-To-Actions that are designed to entice visitors to click on them and take them to a landing page to download your offer.
If you are not using these tools to help you obtain leads, then you need to contemplate a redesign.
5. Your Website Offers No Value
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, your website has to offer value beyond telling people how good you are. Remember those 100 billion monthly internet searches from above. This is where your site has the opportunity to shine, or it can make you look like an outdated mess.
People are looking for information, and they want to do business with people that offer solutions to their problems.
They also want to avoid a sales confrontation (er! presentation) at all costs. This is where inbound marketing comes in. Tools like blogging, case studies and eBooks are the drivers to the modern company website.
People are searching right now for the products and services that YOU have to offer. Can they find you!
And, if they do find you, what are you doing to turn them into a lead?
If it’s been awhile, take the time today to look at your current site and honestly ask yourself these questions:
- Can I tell immediately what this company does from the home page?
- Does this website make the company look like a leader in their industry?
- Do they offer me anything of value if I was their target customer?
- Would I want to do business with them?
If the answer to these questions is "No", then it is time to start redesigning your site.
And, if you feel your current website is in need of work, then look at a marketing agency and not just a web design company. You can learn more about why in our article, Web Developer or Marketing Agency - Who Is Better to Create My Website?
Bill is the CEO and Founder of InTouch Marketing. Bill drives the vision and direction of InTouch except when England's playing in a soccer tournament, because everything stops!