Refreshing your website is a positive habit to adopt. Think of it as driving your car to the garage for a regular checkup or decluttering your home. However, you must differentiate a website refresh from a website update, which must be performed more frequently (at least once or twice a month).
Website Refresh vs. Website Update
A website update ensures that there are no broken links, that all buttons work, and that everything runs smoothly. The process also entails keeping your posts, products, images, and pricing up-to-date.
Meanwhile, a website refresh is similar to a house renovation. The structure remains intact, but you may need to make some cosmetic changes to ensure that your website design does not look outdated. Apart from the design elements, you also need to refresh your SEO, add new features, or switch to a new content management system.
Is it time to refresh your website?
Some businesses might get confused about whether or not they should update or refresh their websites. Fortunately, there are revealing signs that you may need to do some spring cleaning on your website.
Your page loads slowly
A website must load quickly if you want to get ahead of the competition, especially if you have an online store.
But several reasons will halt your website to a crawl, such as unoptimized images, shrinking storage, poor host server, flash content, cluttered code, too many ads, a disproportionate number of videos and images, etc. Ideally, your page should finish loading in between one and five seconds.
Many reasons can explain why your traffic is going down. That’s why you need to revisit your website to ensure that your content and design are up to date. For example, a poor user experience could drive away even the most loyal customers. In addition, broken links, frequent redirects, and other technical issues can also cause your website traffic to plummet.
Your website might have high foot traffic, but it’s useless if you are not converting. Look at your data and determine why you have a high bounce rate. Again, it could be a few things. You might look into your call-to-action, for instance, or the navigation on your website. Your SEO may also no longer work, so you need to change your tactics.
You have a poor mobile presence
You might be reading this article on your smartphone or tablet. According to the latest data, more than 8 in 10 people use their mobile devices to access the Internet. So, it might surprise you that 9 in 10 small businesses are not optimizing their websites for mobile.
As a result, their websites are not responsive and likely to misbehave when accessed by a phone, laptop, or tablet. Another thing to consider is that Google will likely prioritize optimized websites in search engine rankings.
Lastly, if you can no longer remember the last time you tweaked your website, it’s probably ripe for a refresh. However, even if you do not need one, it’s good practice to regularly audit your website to determine if it remains functional and efficient.
If you’re thinking about a website refresh, consider creating a website with an inclusive design, where no audience needs are left behind. It is the practice of incorporating the entire gradient of human uniqueness into the user experience design (UX design).