Diary of a Redesign: Convince Your Boss It's Time to Redesign Your Website with These 8 Reasons
Convincing your boss to approve redesigning your website is challenging because website redesigns can be so expensive, complex, and time-consuming. Adding to the difficulty, design seems so subjective and personal, that sometimes a high level stakeholder liking or not liking the website is reason enough to start or nix a project.
What’s worse, after the new website is live and the bill has been paid, it’s not always clear whether the project was a success by any metric other than “we like the new one better.”
Fortunately, there are plenty of good reasons to start the website redesign process, and identifying them early on will help you build a bulletproof case for a serious overhaul.
1. Your website is not responsive
Your website should look great on every device. It’s not that all your prospective customers are on the go more than ever, but withmobile Internet usage overtaking PC traffic for the first time in 2014, their online habits have changed. Having no mobile-specific web presence, or building a mobile-only site is an outdated approach that leaves you with two sites to manage at best, and zero mobile customers at worst.
2. Your website doesn’t showcase your content
Just putting up a website is not enough. It’s not a static brochure that can stay the same for all time. To keep your site ranking well in search, you have to continue creating fresh content to keep Google crawling back. If your website was designed using Flash, or works best as a series of content-light tableaus, it’s time for a change.
3. You look exactly like your competition
Prevailing trends in web design, and sometimes within a specific industry, lend themselves to websites that look so similar that none of them are memorable. As your primary digital outpost, your website needs to communicate your brand in a strong, distinct way. If your website looks too much like competitor websites, it’s not helping you stand out, and might even inadvertently repeat some of their worst practices. Break away from the pack and offer potential customers a website experience that feels like a breath of fresh air.
4. Visitors can’t tell what you do, sell, or where you are
Even savvy marketers and web designers occasionally go for “shiny” instead of “useful.” Above all, your website should make it absolutely clear what your company or organization does, what you offer, and where and how customers can get it.
5. Your staff don’t use your website because they can’t find any information
If your team isn’t impressed with your website, how do you expect to win over someone who doesn’t have a relationship with you? Someone who works in your company at least knows to walk over to the accounting office to ask a question, but what will a brand new visitor with zero information do if unable to find critical information? Leave.
6. You’re sending people to your Facebook page, Twitter account, YouTube channel, email newsletter, Pinterest Board—anywhere but your website
If you’re embarrassed to send people to your website, well, that’s a red flag. Your social channels are critical to amplifying your signal past your website, but your website is the core of your content marketing and digital business strategy. It’s where potential customers can request more information or complete a transaction. If it doesn’t hold up to your other online presence, it’s time to upgrade.
7. You can’t connect website activity to business outcomes
This is indicative of a bigger problem than just your website design, but site effectiveness is a major contributing factor to your overall marketing success. If you don’t have the ability to measure the impact your website has on driving leads or closing sales, you will need to establish the right KPIs and measure accordingly.
If you do have metrics in place and they show zero net effect from your web efforts, that’s a good indicator the breakdown is happening in your web presence, and it’s time to redesign your website..
8. You know your website is having a negative impact on business or the sales process
If you know for a fact that your current website is costing you inquiries, leads, or sales, then not redesigning it is costing you revenue every single day. Can you afford not to fix the leak?
Build your case for a website redesign project
Any of the reasons listed above is a good foundation for your project case. If two or more of these ring true, running your website is already costing you money and losing revenue. Redesigning your website can dramatically increase its marketing effectiveness, help you close business with highly engaged prospects, and look great while doing it.
This post is the first in our new weekly Diary of a Redesign series, which will cover every stage of the website redesign process, from planning, to design, to implementation, to launch. New posts published every Wednesday.
Karo was born in Poland, and learned to speak English by watching "Saved by the Bell" reruns during her first summer in the U.S., which has left her unable to go through life without occasionally breaking the fourth wall. As Percussion's content marketing manager, she oversees and creates content that drives website traffic, engages followers, and helps fill the marketing and sales funnel. She writes about content management, content marketing, SEO, social media and web design, and how to make it all less complicated.