5 Signs It’s Time for a Website Redesign

Time flies, especially in the life cycle of a website. One moment you have the latest and greatest, and the next you don’t even want to hand out business cards because it means that people will actually SEE your website.

For some people, it’s pretty clear when they need a redesign. Many go for a redesign when they change their branding. Some have websites that just look old. Last year I redesigned a couple of sites that had not had any updates since before the Mayan calendar ended, and it was painfully obvious. Fortunately these clients were completely willing to put their dino-sites in our hands and everyone was pleased with the results.

For others, however, it may not be so obvious. Maybe they are in denial, or the thought of investing in their site again after they’ve spent X amount of dollars building the original is just I-can’t-even.

If you fall into this category, and it’s totally OK, here are some of the more subtle signs that you may benefit from a redesign.

1. You always give a disclaimer when directing people to your website.

You’re at a networking event giving your cocktail pitch and business cards, and you let every. person. know. that you are in the process of updating your site (and you aren’t, but you have the intention to, someday).

This, my friend, is a case of website shame, and I think we’ve all been there at one point. It won’t go away. And it won’t get any better until you do something about it.

2. You have a case of website envy.

So if you are experiencing website shame, chances are you will also experience website envy. It happens to all of us! Someone you know launches her new website and it is just GORGEOUS. You go into comparison mode and don’t even want to look at your outdated site.

But what is envy but the shadow side of inspiration? They are basically the same thing; the difference is that inspiration usually leads to positive action.

So when you have a case of website envy, go make that “New Website” Pinterest board. Start collecting links to websites that make you swoon and save those for your consultations with prospective web designers.

3. It’s not mobile responsive.

But Liz, I can look at my site on my phone and I see the whole thing, right there. Look!

Yeah, but how much pinching and scrolling will you have to do to get to the information you’re seeking? Your site might be “mobile-friendly,” but all that means is that a miniature version of your site shows up on mobile devices. Everything is squeezed into that little space, but it doesn’t make it easier to navigate.

And, by the way, if your site is “mobile optimized,” that simply means that it is designed with mobile users in mind first, but it may not show up well on other screen sizes.

You want your site to be mobile responsive so it will provide a frictionless experience for users across screen sizes and devices. You will not see that if your site is stuck in 2014. Most of the devices people use today simply did not exist then, so your website definitely was not designed with them in mind. Unless you had a time traveling web designer. 🤯

4. You don’t feel motivated to go in and make changes and updates.

You used to spend a lot of time with your website, but now the thrill is gone. You may be spending more time on your Facebook business page and directing people there because it has the most up-to-date information.

That’s like deciding you don’t want to live in your house anymore because you’re tired of staring at the popcorn ceiling and 70’s wallpaper, so you’re going to spend all your time at the park.

The park is pleasant and you meet a lot of people there, but ultimately, the park is not your property and you don’t control what happens there.

It’s time to scrape those ceilings, switch out that wallpaper and move back into your home.

5. Your website is “haunted.”

There’s a weird glitch in your website that you can’t explain. You’ve even checked the calendar to see if Mercury is in retrograde, and it’s not! You might see links that lead you to unsavory sites and wonder how the heck they got there. You go in to delete them and then ten more appear for every one you got rid of!

Just like old abandoned houses getting overtaken by kudzu and critters, your website, if left untended, can get overrun by malware and viruses. Some can even be so bad that a complete rebuild is necessary. And if it’s been sitting long enough to get hacked and attacked to the point of needing a rebuild, it’s a great opportunity to go ahead and do a redesign.

Now, if you are reading this and nodding your head to any of the signs above, the next step may not necessarily be to jump right into a redesign project. The fact that you have a website (even if it’s a clunker) means that you have a great jumping off point to plan for its next iteration.

A few actions you could take:

1. Go ahead and make a wishlist for your redesign. Include links to sites with the style cues and features you would love to implement.

2. Get a website review. Your site may have some great content and features that you would want to bring into the redesign, but you might not realize that unless you have a trained pair of eyes taking a look at them.

3. If you are overwhelmed by the thought of how much a redesign will cost, try shifting your mindset to how much more business you will bring in because you’ll be SO proud of the new look and telling EVERYONE about the new, easy-to-use site.

Go ahead. Turn that website shame into website FAME. 💁

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