Marketing strategy

6 signs that it’s time to update your business website

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Running a business in the 21st century requires an online presence. There’s no getting around that. Business pages on social media are used to connect with new prospects. Custom email addresses help customers identify with the product or service being offered. Up-to-date websites can increase conversion rates. These are the three must-haves for doing business in 2022.  

With marketing and promotions, traffic is most often directed to your website. Social media pages have a link to it. Emails display it in the signature line or link to it from the body. Your website is the modern equivalent of a storefront. What does yours look like when you visit? How does it perform? If you’re not satisfied with the answers to these questions, it may be time for an upgrade.    

How to decide when it’s time to upgrade your website

Simply having a website is not enough if you want to compete in this economy. New technology is being developed all the time and consumer behavior changes frequently. According to a Microsoft study conducted in 2019, prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the average attention span of online consumers is eight seconds. That’s how long you have to capture the attention of website visitors: eight seconds. 

Your website needs to operate faster and be more intuitive if you want to convert leads to sales in this climate. Have you made any changes to it recently? Here are six signs that it’s time for a website upgrade.

1. Poor SERP rankings and organic discoverability

The acronym “SERP” stands for “search engine results page.” When a consumer types in a search term or keyword, the search engine displays the most relevant results for that term in a series of pages. Your objective as a small business is to get to Page 1 for any keywords or phrases that are relevant to your business. That creates a condition known as “organic discoverability.”

According to Statista, Google owns a 92.47% market share for global searches. The algorithm they use to determine page rank includes variables for recent updates and content relevance. Each time your website changes, whether it’s by modifying existing content or adding new content, Google reindexes your site and updates its SERP ranking. Poor SERP position is a sign you need a website upgrade.       

2. Slow load times

Remember that eight-second attention span? If your website takes five seconds to load, you’ve already lost the consumer. Even if they’re patient enough to wait, they won’t stay long. This happens often with older websites that were built with code that’s now outdated or include plug-ins that take too long to function. Load times can be improved by modifying your website or changing the hosting service.

These types of updates can cost money, so it could be a good idea to cover the upfront costs by applying for a business line of credit. Continued investment in your website performance could lead to a nice uptick in customers and a decrease in bounce rates.

3. High bounce rates

Bounce rate is a term used to describe a website visit where the user doesn’t attempt to navigate the website and leaves from the first page they visit. This phenomenon can be tracked with Google Analytics or through a content management system like WordPress. High bounce rates can be an indicator of slow load speed, poor navigation options, or an unappealing website design.

4. Poor mobile user experience

User experience (UX) can make or break an online business. In March 2022, the U.S. retail ecommerce market was estimated at $431 billion. That’s in a nation with 230 million smartphones. How does your website perform on those devices? It’s a mistake to do a website upgrade and only focus on the desktop version. Check the UX on mobile and make sure it’s easy for consumers to do business with you––most people are doing their initial searches on mobile, so businesses need to meet them there.

5. Outdated appearance or design

The colors of your website can cause an emotional response in the user. Blues instill trust and loyalty. Greens are good for healing and quality. The London Image Institute has a comprehensive study of this published on their website (which is red). There are similar studies elsewhere about design, photos, and site layouts. Check the most modern data you can find to see if your website is up to date.       

6. Unclear site structure or navigation

Navigation on a website needs to be intuitive and obvious. Every second wasted looking for the menu bar or specific product page is a chance for the consumer to move to another site. A good way to test this is by having someone who’s never visited your website log on and try to figure it out. Any struggles with navigation are a good indication that your website needs an upgrade.

Upgrade your business website frequently

What works today may not be sufficient for consumer interaction six months from now. Website upgrades should be scheduled regularly to keep up with technology changes and consumer behaviors. Indicators that you need an upgrade include poor SERP rankings, slow load speeds, a poor mobile UX, an outdated appearance, unclear navigation, and high bounce rates.

Luckily, once you know what issues your website has, you’ll be able to address them and improve your site experience for customers and prospects alike.

Disclaimer

This content is for educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice of any type, such as financial, legal, tax, or accounting advice. This content does not necessarily state or reflect the views of Bluevine or its partners. Please consult with an expert if you need specific advice for your business. For information about Bluevine products and services, please visit the Bluevine FAQ page.

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Disclaimer

This content is for educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice of any type, such as financial, legal, tax, or accounting advice. This content does not necessarily state or reflect the views of Bluevine or its partners. Please consult with an expert if you need specific advice for your business. For information about Bluevine products and services, please visit the Bluevine FAQ page.