Do I Need a New Website? If you are asking yourself the question above, I would propose that the answer is a resounding… yes. Your due for a new website. Or at least an impressive website update. Now more than ever, it is important to establish an effective online presence. It has been said that social media is now the public square.
The Importance of Users Attention
Well, then I say that your website is now your soapbox. With attention spans shortening and an ever-increasing multitude of global competition, you have to act quickly in order to capture the attention of your customers. On average, a user will establish an opinion about your website in .05 seconds and there are always other options to choose from if your site fails to retain attention. To capture those hearts and minds your site needs to be easy to navigate, pleasing to look at, relevant to the consumer, and much more.
So when evaluating whether you need a new site, ask yourself three questions:
Do I Like My Website?
After all the hard work you put into building up your business – developing a concept, reaching out to customers, financing, creating a brand identity. Ask yourself does this site reflect my efforts? Does it send the message I want to send to my audience? Your website reflects on your company and your concept. So, you should be the first person to sign off on the design and the content put onto your site.
You know your organization better than anyone. Step back, be objective, and establish whether your website design is unique and effective. I can’t stress the unique aspect of this enough. Templates and DIY website design is all fine if you want your website to look the exact same as every other website out there!
Seriously, this is such a common issue that there are even satiric sites made about repetitive design such as this bootstrap mockup: Speaking of content, what are you adding regularly that adds value to your site? A blog, a new product promo, photos, videos? This not only can keep viewers coming back but also works to give a more comprehensive view of your product and your company identity.
Do They Like My Website?
Get out of your own head, silly! It’s time to do a little digging and find out what your target market thinks. There are many ways to get feedback on your site. Reply to your comment thread, create a survey, run an A/B test, or simply ask someone.
One of the best ways to understand how customers interact with your site is to ask them to use it, and then sit back and observe. This is an important step for UX/UI designers but you can use it too! Ask four or five different people to interact with your website.
Using Analytics Software
Get some different age groups and social groups. Don’t just have your tech-savvy friends use it, have your grandmother navigate it then you are 10-year-old. Then just sit back and listen, take a notepad, and write down your observations. Write down all the times this person was frustrated, excited, or confused. See how long it took them to navigate to your blog feed or checkout page. These observations can give you valuable insight into what content, structures, colors, and fonts could be improved.
It is also important to get some stats in there as well. Use analytics software (google analytics is free) and figure out the average amount of time a user spends on your website. Calculate your bounce rate and your conversion rate. Figure out how users are arriving at your site. Find out where they spend the most time and the least.
Establish how your viewers are engaging and if this is adding value to your company. It isn’t all about lead conversion. Your company and online reputation might benefit if your site is offering important information to return users such as blog content, or videos that explain a product or elaborate on a prior method or design.
Is My Website Effective?
On average, consumers are using 2.23 devices at the same time. With multiple devices being used for internet searches it is now more important than ever to make sure that your website is accessible on all devices.
This is something you can measure with customer feedback or your own keen eye. Establish how your site operates on different devices. How do the pages load? How might your site be optimized for mobile view? All important questions to consider. It is also important to make sure all videos play and all pictures and gifs are able to be viewed across devices. For instance, if you still use flash, your content may not be able to be viewed on Ipads and mobile phones.
Consider also how your website ranks in google’s search results. Effective Search Engine Optimization can drive more traffic to your site. This can be achieved by an effective content marketing strategy capitalizing on your number of backlinks and outbound links. It is always important to remember quality over quantity though. Unless you are a news organization, repeatedly updating content likely won’t improve your ranking. Focus on having useful content that will inform and delight your consumers.
Be careful with SEO. Keyword stuffing or too many outbound links can actually cause harm to your website and it can be tough to rebuild your ranking if you are penalized.
The Costs of a Bad Website
UX/ UI design is a complicated process, don’t let this get in the way of reaching your customers. The internet gives you a global reach but it takes a lot of knowledge and effort to seize it. You may be trying to save money and time by using templates or settling with an incompetent web design team. As I have said above there is a lot of pressure to be unique in our current marketplace. By settling for a subpar website your company can’t reach its full potential. And we aren’t saying that you have to go with Faceless to redesign your site… but it can’t hurt to check us out, can it?
A website is the most important component of your company’s marketing plan. It’s the central hub for your messaging efforts and should have all other marketing materials allocated to it. With our in-house designers, we recognize the fact that usability, functionality, visualization, and responsive mobile layout are four of the most important factors when designing interfaces or web sites. Using this strategy, we work with you to ensure that your messaging and marketing goals are realized with the designs we create.
Are you ready to start your website or redesign? Reach out to Faceless Marketing for a FREE quote.