Refresh your website
9 Reasons Why Your Online Presence May Need A ‘Refresh’
October 29, 2018
Refresh your website

9 Reasons Why Your Online Presence May Need A REFRESH

A well designed website can be one of the most effective marketing tools your business has, to educate and inform prospects and customers, drive leads and produce measurable ROI.

The use of Social Media for business, LinkedIn in particular, is rapidly expanding. If your competitors are on social media and you aren’t, you’re missing an entire generation of potential customers...

As important as you know this is – you simply don’t have the time – or you may not even know where to start...

While there are many decisions involved in choosing whether or not to refresh your online presence, here are 9 reasons why you may need a REFRESH.

1. Poor Visual Appeal

Perhaps your entire site is a jumble of info, crammed onto a single page with no central focus or message. Maybe the site is using too many competing colors and fonts, poor quality images or broken links...

Has your firm recently updated your logo, colors or tagline – but not YET done so on your website? Your firm’s website should effectively communicate your current identity and messaging.

If your site is poorly designed or structured, with out-of-date content, your visitors will make the same assumptions about your company and judge you based on what they see.

2. Bad Photography

A picture isn’t worth 1,000 words if it sends the wrong message.

Does your site have blurry or poor quality images?  Are you using stock photos because custom photography is ‘just too expensive'?

Stock photo might seem inexpensive, but it could be costing more than you think. That image of your ‘customer service rep’ may be the same image used by hundreds of other firms. The stock photo close-up of a machine tool may look ‘cool’ but if it’s not your machine, showcasing your capabilities, visitors might be misled.

Manufacturing websites MUST have professional-looking photos and/or renderings of your products, so that users will be drawn to the images and quickly understand if your company meets their needs.

3. You’re Lost and Can’t Be Found (Lacking in SEO)

Dharmesh Shah posted on growth.org a few years back, “The best place to hide a dead body is page 2 of the Google search results.” With millions and millions of websites online, competition to ‘land’ a spot on page 1 of search results is fierce. Without some basic attention to Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices your search results – and company – will fall farther and farther behind. Is anyone at your firm studying keywords, meta data, media tags or descriptive file names – or simply working to make sure your site is mobile-friendly? If not, you just might find yourself on page 2...

4. Out-dated or Irrelevant Content

That blog post dated from 2012 is just sitting there, covered in virtual ‘dust’. The price list dated in 2005, for the product line or service you no longer offer, is telling your visitors, “I either don’t care or I don’t know what I’m doing – and I can’t be bothered to figure it out.”

You know updating your site is important – but maybe you can’t make changes to your site without a lot of hassle and money (see reason #6).

5. A Lazy Website with no CTA or ROI

On your last ‘redesign’ did you invest a lot of time and money only to wonder, what did I do that for?

When and if prospects or customers visit your site – do they DO anything – or is it just another stack of brochures in the closet gathering dust. How do you measure the Return On Your Investment when there is no defined ‘return’?

Your website is a marketing tool that should be working for you 24/7/365. Each page should have an effective Call To Action (CTA) to move the site visitor to DO something: download an article, request a quote or upload a CAD drawing – whatever the next ‘step’ might be in their journey from prospect to customer.

6. You’ve Got “Vendor Lock-In” and can’t make changes...

Are you experiencing “Vendor Lock-in” – a situation in which your website design or hosting vendor won’t allow you to make simple changes, or transition to a different, easier product or service. Vendor lock-in is usually the result of proprietary technologies that are incompatible with those of competitors such as:

A closed Content Management System you can’t really use. Is your team unable to make a change, simple or complex, without contacting the software provider or web host and submitting a request in triplicate? Does even a simple change require knowledge of software code?

If you want to make a change, to take advantage of a new marketing opportunity, do you have to leap through hoops, using a special programmer who ‘speaks the language’ and then pay an arm and a leg for the privilege?

7. Not Responsive or Mobile-Friendly

The amount of time we spend on our smart mobile devices is increasing exponentially. At work, home or play – we’re using these devices more and more to access the information we want and need.

If your site is not mobile-responsive, if you don’t even know what ‘mobile-responsive’ means, then more than likely you’re missing out on a huge and growing section of your potential audience.

Your site needs to look and act differently when viewed on a desktop screen, a mobile phone or a tablet. It needs to respond accordingly to the device the viewer is using.

Plus... Google penalizes sites that aren’t mobile-friendly, moving them WAY down on the search results, whether or not the viewer is using a mobile device.

8. Missing Content or Broken Links

Is your Sales and Distributor contact information up-to-date? If your customers can’t figure out how to reach you or your team – they’ll move on to the next site.

Does the ‘click here to learn more’ text send the visitor to a “404 Page Not Found” land of confusion... There’s really no excuse for missing information or broken links, unless your website is too hard to update and takes specially trained personnel...  But it CAN be fixed (See reason #6).

9. Difficult to Navigate

Did your previous designer place the website Menu in a ‘non-standard’ location because it ‘looked cool’ – but it wasn’t where everyone expects navigation to be? (Hint: top of page.)

Did the 'website committee' manage to cram in more than 8 main pages, creating a much-too-complex menu?

Do your drop-down menus have drop-down menus?

If users have difficulty navigating your website, it sends negative signals to them about the business behind the site.

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