Often when I talk to clients about updating their website they say, ‘but we just updated it’. And of course, ‘just’ means something different to everyone. The reality is there is no hard and fast rule on how often you need to update your website but you do need to keep it current both from a content and design perspective if you want it to get you results. Your website is often the first point of contact a prospect has with your brand so you need to think about what your site is communicating about you.
Who cares about design?
While in B2B marketing, we believe that content and strategy take precedence, you still need to invest in the visual elements of your marketing. According to a study completed at Stanford University, 75% of people judge the credibility of a company based on the design of its website alone.1 Credibility is critical to the success of any business, regardless of industry. People need to trust your brand to do business with you. And 38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content/layout is unattractive.2 While a slick website may not be the true representation of a company 100% of the time, first impressions are lasting. For many potential customers out there, not being immediately impressed with a company’s website can be a deal breaker.1
Content is King!
You need to make content updates regularly. A website is not a ‘set-it-and-forget-it’ tool. You don’t just work through a redesign and the let it sit. New content updates are critical to the success of your site. Your visitors want fresh content so there is a reason to come back and search engines want new content to crawl. Content updates are great for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and they keep your site current. Having a blog that you post to regularly is a great way to ensure your site is consistently getting new material. But don’t forget about your contact page, your team pages and your other resources. The whole site needs to be current to perform.
How do I know when to need to update my site?
A full redesign is a big undertaking but the results will pay off. You should consider redesigning your site if any of the following apply:
If you’ve recently created a new logo or updated your colour palette to freshen up your collateral, be sure to update the web design to align. Often a graphic designer will create some modern new digital pieces or printed collateral but the branding is not consistent with your website. You want all your assets to work together to help your brand gain recognition and be memorable.
New products or services
Did you launch a new product or service? You want to ensure your site is set up to promote the new offering. Can you easily add it to the current navigation? Will the new products or services be easily found? You want your site to be an extension of your sales team so be sure that you can effectively promote your new products or services.
If you have very high bounce rates or you aren’t able to convert visitors then there may be improvements that are needed to the site’s architecture to help you move them in the right direction. Consider redesigning your site if it’s not performing the way you want it to.
Is the user experience on your site good? Do you have a responsive design? Surprisingly there are still many B2B companies who don’t have responsive websites and they are missing out on the mobile users and hurting their SEO. Do customers complain that your site is hard to navigate or that load times are too slow? 39% of people will stop engaging with a website if images won’t load or take too long to load.2 Make sure you take feedback from prospects and clients seriously as the ones who speak up are often the minority so their feedback is valuable as many others are likely experiencing the same thing.
Engagement is low
Can people easily connect with you from your site? 44% of website visitors will leave a company's website if there's no contact information or phone number.2 Is your phone number on every page? Do you have detailed contact information on a contact page? Can your visitors connect with you through social media? You want your visitors to be engaged so make it as easy as possible for them.
Once you decide it’s time to undertake the redesign makes sure you implement all the best practices for websites. Be sure you create a well thought out site map and wire frames that will create a positive user experience. Think about the content you have and the content that you need to ensure you site will convert. And don’t forget all the SEO best practices like 301 redirects, title tags, meta descriptions, alt text, backlinks and so on. Ready for a new website? Read our blog 10 steps to follow when you need a new website or give us a call 416.583.5831.