Knowing when to rethink your web design and development can feel like a labyrinth.
On one hand, sticking with a marketing and branding plan seems like a good idea, since customers are more likely to buy from companies they see at least seven times. Making a switch is not only expensive, but it could end up confusing your brand loyalists.
On the other hand, a brand can grow stale after going long enough without a refresh. Few things are more damning than a website that looks like no one’s touched it since Google launched Chrome. To inspire confidence, your web presence should speak to your ability to serve customer needs and meet them at their level.
So what should you do? Is doubling down on your website the right answer, or is it time to talk to a web developer? What’s the right approach when making these kinds of changes? Let’s take a look at five reasons why it’s time to rethink your web design and development.
1. Get with the Times
Wanna know a fun fact?
A decade ago, people boosted their SEO scores by copying swaths of relevant keywords into their pages, making the keyword text invisible, then writing the rest of the page without any concern for search relevance. Other sites would find a few websites with good information and plagiarize everything they could.
The weird thing is that it worked. Keyword stuffing and copied content weren’t yet on the no-no list, and SEO strategists would instruct their clients to do as much of it as necessary.
Today, Google decimates search rankings for any site that employs the same tactics.
Search algorithms are smarter than ever before, crawling meta text, alt keywords, and page content to check for cheats like those mentioned above. Standards are high, and today, the SEO industry is worth billions of dollars (it even has its own rock stars).
In order to bring your site up to date, you need a web developer that understands all the fundamentals of good design and best practices. This includes accessibility settings like the color scheme and screen readability, SEO-driven content (like you’re reading now), and streamlined sitemaps that contain niche pages for a specific audience.
Does this sound like marketing to you? Your hunch is accurate because good web design must be the result of smart marketing and thorough planning.
By working with a skilled web developer, you can update your site with:
- Refined service/practice area pages
- Sleek sitemap configuration using shortened URLs and fewer parent pages
- Proper backlinks
- Relevant content
- Use of Google My Business
2. Business Needs Change
After a few years in business, odds are that you’ve seen a few changes here and there. Perhaps you no longer offer a service or carry a specific product, and while your repeat customers know that, the new ones looking at your website don’t.
One important SEO refinement is to make niche pages that target specific searches. Back in the old days, if someone were to search for “plumber in Hollywood,” they would have to sift through page after page of plumbers all over California.
Today though, search engines use information supplied by vendors to provide the most accurate search results based on a searcher’s location. This is better for customers and business owners—leads are more likely to convert to sales, and customers are more likely to use those services again.
There’s a good chance that your website could use some revision in the niche search department, and the investment is worth it. Without updated service pages, customers will be directed to other sites that have spent the time and money to gain more traction.
3. Technology Is Advancing All the Time
Whether you’re building an app for iOS or Android, having an experienced web developer at your side can make a huge difference in that program’s reach. While it used to be extremely expensive to hire an expert app developer, programs like Flutter and other app approaches have made it far more achievable to build custom software.
If your business doesn’t already have a mobile app, there’s never been a better time to get started on one. Unless an app is to be highly complex, developers are no longer bound to developing for iOS and Android separately.
Plus, with responsive design capabilities, web apps can now adjust to any screen size on the spot. It’s just one more way modern web design and development has advanced to the benefit of the rest of us.
4. Build Custom Software
Websites and mobile apps aren’t the only reasons to rethink development. Many businesses have begun opting for custom software instead of turnkey programs already offered by the big brands. Why? Because it’s not as expensive as it used to be.
Business software is notoriously expensive, with per-user licensing fees costing companies thousands of dollars each year. Why bother? Build your own software that does exactly what you want. Sure, it takes more time to get it just right, but the right web developer can help you get there.
When you build a product from scratch, it doesn’t mean you have to reinvent the wheel. There are many different ways to take advantage of existing software through the use of APIs, helping you give employees (and customers) the best features without spending all the time developing them yourself.
Custom software also gives you the opportunity to custom tailor every single operation and feature yourself. As you work with your developer, they can help you realize your vision and take the right steps to get there.
5. Refreshes Are Fun
If it’s been a while since your last website refresh, consider taking the plunge and giving your business’s web presence a facelift. Refreshes not only help to increase your search rankings, but they can make work fun again.
When you have a new website you’re confident with, inviting people to visit and spend time there is a little easier. Spending money just to spruce it up may not seem like a worthwhile investment, but not all refreshes have to cost that much.
Ask around—many experienced developers have an idea of what it’ll cost to get you an improved web presence and refreshed look without having to spend months doing it. Interview them and ask about their philosophy for website refreshes like yours.
To Sum Everything Up
Money is tight. We get it but consider this: more than half of all web traffic takes place via smartphone. Where are people using their smartphones? Everywhere. As our collective attention span shrinks and shrinks, it’s never been more important to establish a web presence that keeps people interested.
It doesn’t have to cost anything to consult a web developer and ask what they would change on your site. At the very least, you’ll have some ideas about what to do when you have enough money down the road.
What are you waiting for? Speak to one of our expert web developers today.
Click here to schedule a free 15-minute consultation.