The first and oldest web domain on the internet is symbolics.com, founded in 1985. And even they updated their look and feel to keep up with modern search and user trends.
Web design might sometimes seem like an unnecessary expense for some small business owners. In fact, it's quite the opposite. User habits and Google search algorithms change regularly. You're missing out on valuable traffic (and potential customers) if you're not consistently modernizing your website.
But how do you know when it's time to upgrade—or build your first site? Below, we highlight 7 signs or reasons a small business needs a new website.
Read on to see if they apply to you!
1. You Still Don't Have a Website
Shockingly, a large number of small businesses in America don't have a website at all.
It might be okay if your business is an independent gas station in a high-traffic area, but it poses a significant problem for anyone else. You're missing out on many potential leads if you don't have a website.
Thankfully, this is a problem that you can resolve quickly. There's never been a better time to access affordable website design. Today, websites are reasonable to host, affordable and quick to design, and easy to maintain—so long as you work with a savvy provider.
2. Your Current Website is Ugly or Outdated
The adage goes: Never judge a book by its cover. Well, that doesn't work so well when it comes to your online presence.
The main goal of your website is to attract and engage visitors, encouraging them to interact with your website the way the entity hosting the website needs them to. This might be to buy a product (an e-commerce business), request a service quotation (a plumber or roofer), or make an appointment (a doctor's office). However, one study found that close to 40% of visitors will discontinue their time on a website if they think it's, well, ugly.
So, if your website looks like it's from 2013 instead of 2023, it's time to invest in a website redesign—ASAP!
3. Your Website Is Not Mobile Friendly
You're probably glued to your smartphone. After all, the average user spends over 3 hours A DAY scrolling socials, websites, emails, podcasts, and more on their phone.
Well, it's not a wild assertion to suggest your customers are doing the same thing. And you need to make sure your company website works great on a desktop and adapts to the smaller screens people now use.
And that's because nearly 60% of web traffic comes from a mobile device—a smartphone, tablet, or laptop.
Thankfully, most website builders today use responsive design technology, making it easy to adapt to this new reality.
4. You're Not Getting the Results You Expect From Your Site
You've nailed that all-important first impression. Your website looks great on mobile. Yet, you're still not attracting those all-important leads—at least, not as many as you'd hoped.
If your conversions are low, it could be because your website design isn't optimized to aid your customer's journey through your sales funnel. They might find you, but once they're on your site, they're getting lost in where to go or what to do next.
A redesign with a focus on clear calls-to-action can help you achieve your conversion goals.
5. Business Is Slow, and Sales Are Stagnating
You've had a legitimate business for a long time, and once, your website served you well. People could find you, and they'd contact you via phone or the contact form on your website to enquire about your services.
Today, those people just aren't coming. So what's going on?
Your aging website is likely not optimized for inbound marketing. You must ensure it includes places where you can provide your visitors with educational and helpful information that addresses their pain points and helps them trust your expertise.
6. You Have a High Bounce Rate
Google Analytics defines a bounce rate as the percentage of people who visit a single page on your website. This essentially means the analytics program is counting the number of people who only stay on the website they first click through to—say, from the Google search results page—and then click away from your website immediately or a short time later.
A high bounce rate is considered anywhere between 56% to 70% (or above). You can read this as your website not having enough relevant content to keep visitors interested and exploring.
To remedy this, you need to upgrade your website, so it offers people somewhere to go next at all stages of their experience.
7. Your Website Isn't Secure
If your website fails on security, it will get downvoted in Google searches. And this means no one will find you. Also, if visitors perceive your website as unsafe, they're unlikely to trust you.
Modern websites need an SSL certificate at a minimum. This is a fundamental trust signal for visitors and Google. However, some small businesses may need to consider upgrading to something even more encrypted, especially if they collect personal client data.
We Build Small Business Websites That Work
If you think you need a new website, trust your gut. If it's telling you "yes," you probably needed to invest yesterday. If even one of the points above resonates with you, it's time to invest in an upgrade.
Perhaps your customers complain they can't find what they need on your website. Maybe you're worried clients aren't finding you online at all! Can you navigate properly or upload new content onto your website?
Contact our agency to discuss your new website today. We specialize in affordable web solutions and small business websites that are effective, optimized, and secure.