We’ve all seen sites that look like they’re stuck in the ‘90s. However, even modern sites can look old-fashioned sooner than you might think. And if the underlying software goes out of date, your website will quickly become slow and vulnerable.
In short, a dated website doesn’t perform well. That can be detrimental to your marketing goals, especially if you rely on your website to generate leads. Unfortunately, we tend to develop blind spots when it comes to our own marketing materials. Here’s how to tell if your website is dated and hurting your business — and how to fix it.
Your design isn’t mobile-friendly
By the year 2020, there are no more excuses. All websites should use responsive design, meaning that page elements adjust to various screen sizes. No matter what industry you’re in, most of your audience is using a mobile device to visit your site. If they have to pinch or zoom to see the page, or if the content is cut off on smaller screens, they’ll likely leave rather than trying to navigate the site. In this day and age, a lack of responsive design is a clear indication that you don’t care about your users’ experience.
Don’t chase off prospective customers: revamp your site to be mobile-friendly.
Your site isn’t secure
It’s now a requirement to have an SSL certificate installed on your site. This protects your visitors by securing any data they send as they use your site. Most modern browsers treat a lack of an SSL certificate as a security risk, which means some users may not even be able to access your site. Those who do will feel much more confident if they see you’ve implemented security measures.
SSL certificates are quite cheap and easy to install, so don’t delay! Plus, Google prioritises secure sites in its search results.
Your images are low-res or poorly done
One of the surest signs of an outdated website is tiny, grainy photos. As screen resolutions have improved, these tiny photos become a huge eyesore. If you’re selling products or promoting a service that requires customer trust, you can easily drive away customers with bad imagery You don’t have to stuff your website with shiny stock photos — that’s off-putting as well — but you should make sure that your photos are clean, well-lit, and high-quality.
Invest in professional photos of your products and team, and use illustrative images that look natural and on-brand. Avoid ultra-shiny, generic stock photos!
Your SEO depends on backlinks
Backlinks are indeed important. After all, Google was founded on the idea that backlinks demonstrate a site’s importance! However, times have changed, and Google realised that many SEO marketers were mining backlinks. That’s why the current algorithm prioritises valuable content that’s easy to read. If your website is full of link lists and lengthy copy, it’s time to revamp.
Spend time developing quality content that will rank in search results. Be sure that every page of your site is optimised for search engine crawlers. That means clean layouts, clear heading structures, and properly tagged images and copy.
Your website copy is internal-facing, not external
For years, many people treated websites as a sort of business hub. Everything from policy documents to detailed staff bios appeared on the site. Except for content that’s required by law, there’s absolutely no reason to include any of this stuff on your site. It doesn’t interest your audience and can seem very self-serving and promotional, rather than engaging and customer-oriented! Plus, it’s a lot of clutter that makes your site hard to manage.
Develop a content strategy that includes user-friendly pages, engaging content, and clearly written copy. You’ll get more organic traffic to your site and connect better with visitors.
You’re not compliant with regulations
Play it safe and audit your site for compliance. You’ll be glad you did.
Your website should be your 24/7 salesperson, consistently showing your best face to all your potential customers. An outdated, hard-to-use website simply doesn’t accomplish that. Moreover, it’s vulnerable to hackers, and many users are savvy enough to avoid insecure sites. Updating your website may be time-consuming, but the investment is well worth the effort.
For expert assistance with custom web design informed by quality user experience research and comprehensive support for your branding strategy, contact us.
Every Seedling Digital site is completely custom built from scratch, to suit each business, to showcase each proof point, to connect and land with your target market.
Not sure if we’re a good fit? Not sure what your business needs? I understand it’s a lot to think through! Sometimes it’s better to jump on a Zoom call and talk it out. Book a call and let’s figure it out!