Speaking from the perspective of a website design specialist (great title for myself, huh?), this post may be a little self-serving. Of course I would want you to have your website redesigned, that’s what I do. But there are many reasons to consider a cosmetic (or more in-depth) change to your site when you take a look at what your website design says about your business through the eyes of a new visitor.
This is unfortunately true for a lot of small businesses out there today. They might have even been ahead of the game and had a website design before their competition. It might have even looked ‘cool’ back in the day. But if you have the same website design you started with 10 years ago, believe me – your website design is out of date.
Your content may still be applicable and the message you are trying to send still may be good, but your design needs to look like sites that people are used to seeing these days. There isn’t a true official checklist of things that make your site outdated, but as an internet viewer, when you see one of those poor website designs out there, you just don’t feel as good about that company anymore..
You may shudder when you hear the words “you need a blog on your website,” but “you need a blog on your website.” Call it whatever you want, a journal, recent news, updates, ramblings or whatever – but some sort of fresh content that shows your potential customers what you are doing to make their experience better or to improve your product is what they want to read about. (You can read more about how keeping updated content on your site is not only great for your viewers but for Google ranking as well!)
I’m sure every sales person has heard that before. “I don’t see the value in (what you are selling).” And frankly, if that’s what you think about having a well designed website, don’t have one at all. It honestly looks better (to me anyway) for a company to not have a website than to have a poorly designed website. If I’m researching a company and find that they don’t have a website, I still have some sort of intrigue to continue searching to find out more information. But if I come across a disaster of a site that has dancing GIFs, animated borders, neon-fluorescent backgrounds and TEXT ALL IN CAPS – I doubt I’ll be giving you another look.
If you see the value in having a website at all – you need to understand that it takes more care than going out and buying a Great Web Sites for Dummies book and spending a weekend putting information together. Most people can do a fairly decent job of creating a web site on their own if given the time & resources. That’s what makes this business tough.
Creating a website is not like building a house, where most people would say that they had no clue how to get started on plumbing or running electricity. But a website – sure I can do that! I have a keyboard and a mouse, I can use a pre-made website design template from _____ or _____ and I’ll be on my way. My family and friends will be amazed at the work I did on my own!
It is easier than ever for people to get tricked into thinking that they can create a well designed, SEO optimized website that viewers will flock to. I’ve only been in business for a relatively short time and I’ve already had two (potential) clients tell me that while they liked the ideas and concepts (and the price!) I had come up with for their website, they felt they could do it on their own. One of them has already called and apologized that they didn’t sign up with me and is currently very unhappy with their choice of a pre-made website template.
Think about the websites that you visit on a continuous basis. What do you like about those sites? How is the content organized to make it easy to navigate? Are the artwork, fonts, color schemes or graphics intrusive? Do you think that those websites at least consulted with a web site designer to complete this project? Compare two of the sites you visit regularly. How are they both great websites, but different in their own way?
A new web site design doesn’t cost near as much as losing a customer with a poor website design. And with the offer of a free cup of coffee, you’re really just being stubborn if you don’t give me a call. At the very least, I’ll give you some free hints on how to make your site generate more sales. Why? Because I’m a nice guy like that.