The vitality of online presence to your brand and business cannot be underestimated. Your site serves your business much like a storefront. It should be able to sell your business to the customer from the minute their eyes land on the page.
In a competitive and fast-paced world, however, you may find it hard to compete with a site that does not meet the standards your customers expect. This is because, before buying, 93% of customers will search online for a product or service. A good site, therefore, helps to keep you in the front-line as a small business owner. With many of the consumers today being tech-savvy and equally discerning, establishing a solid presence on the internet is necessary to a businesses success.
A good site should be able to load quickly, be well designed, and easily navigable once a visitor begins to browse through its pages. In 2016, Fortune noted that up to 51% of purchases in 2016 were made online. This was an improvement from 2015’s 48%. This upward acceleration only stresses the need for viewer friendly, well-designed, updated websites. It is, therefore, necessary to ensure that your website works for you rather than against you.
We have composed a list of ten signs that will help you know when it is time to tune up your small business site so that you retain your customers and attract new ones as well.
Non Mobile-Responsive Sites
Millions of consumers surf the web for information about businesses. They search on mobile phones, tablets and desktops for information. With a non mobile-responsive website, the impression made on these customers may not be as good. While your site may look good on a computer screen, it may not look as good on a smartphone. If you own a site that cannot adapt to different screen sizes and shapes, then it may be time to phase out that version and update it to a better interface.
Sites that Use Flash
Flash Technology was responsible for the revolution of web-design by allowing designers to use animated content in their designs. Soon, HTML5 came in all its glory, dimming the shine of Flash and making it obsolete. This, however, is not the only problem with Flash technology. Flash is not good for your SEO because it reduces the content amounts visible to the indexing bots of Google which in turn lowers the SEO visibility of your business.
Additionally, Flash is inaccessible. With Flash, you cannot scale using your keyboard, copy and paste content and worst of all, you cannot identify clickable links. It also loads slowly and presents an array of security issues. Since it is phased out, it is no longer supported by most browsers. Your site may, therefore, be running out of time if it is flash-intensive.
Sites That Don’t Reflect the Brand They Represent
Your website should be a representation of your business and what you have to offer. As you embrace changes such as updating the company logo, changing brand colors or altering your company in any way, it is important to ensure that your site is equally updated. Your emails, brochures, and who you are on the internet should create a uniform picture. This currency and consistency help create differentiation and personality for your business. If your website is lagging behind in this way, then it is definitely time to update your website.
Sites with Slow Load Times
Time is precious, and this is a lesson you have learned since childhood. Imagine how unhappy a slow-loading site could make you. Niel Patel estimates that it takes only four seconds of loading time for a business to lose 25% of potential viewers. If a consumer sticks around without regarding the slow load times, they leave with a poor impression and are dissatisfied with their online experience. Additionally, the slowness of your site has an impact on your SEO rankings. This means that the faster your website, the better the results will be.
Sites with Poor SEO Implementation
SEO can help you shine on the web. And with most consumers preferring easy to find information, low SEO rankings will not play in your favor. A client will prefer a result on the first page to that on the fifth page of the rankings. To make the most out of Google searches, you will have to learn the ropes of SEO. With better SEO implementation, you will be sure to get higher traffic amounts on your site that directly impact sales and leads. Ensure your site ranks among the first five on the results page for a chance to get up to 75% of the clicks.
Sites with Stale Aesthetics
Since web design is constantly changing, consumers are well aware of the importance of a well designed site. They can recognize stale, outdated designs from a mile away, making them question who sits behind the screen. With stale aesthetics, you are undermining the credibility of your site. If this is the case, it is time to wake up from your slumber and make the best out of the most recent aesthetics.
Sites with High Bounce Rates
Bounce rate is defined by Google as a single page session on a site. If your site has multiple pages, then a high bounce rate is bad news as it reflects that the site was not user-friendly or it didn’t have the content the clients were seeking. Your visitors do not like what they see if the bounce rate is higher than the average. If this happens to your business, then consider updating your website.
Sites with Out-of-Date Content
An outdated site comes in many different forms. A site may have a news section or blog that may not have been updated in a few years. Sometimes, as a small business that is beginning to bud, you may even fail to update your pricing information or contact information, leading to your detriment should a consumer use the former prices or contacts.
Out of date information sends a message of staleness and is a sign of nothing new going on in the business. Keeping up-to-date, on the other hand, shows the customer that your business is current and forward-thinking. In some situations, it’s actually better option to remove a section of the site rather than having it outdated.
Sites with Unclear or No Calls to Action
As a business, you should be able to engage your readers with your site as this results in sales. However, this is not enough if after going through your content, the users have no idea which step they should take next.
A strong call to action comes in to tell the reader what all the information you gave them boils down to. You may require them to sign up so that they receive your newsletter, attend an event, consult with you or simply download a report. This helps you stay connected. Ensure your call to action grabs attention. Identify a problem and give a clear solution together with an incentive that will enable a click.
Sites with No Social Media Links
Social media gives you a chance to interact closely with your customers and share your products with a wider audience. Be present on sites like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter and incorporate “follow” buttons on your site. While not the most important aspect of your site, giving potential customers the option to learn more about you on another platform they interact with more frequently is not a bad idea.
While having and maintaining a website may not be easy, it is essential to ensure that it is serving your business well. With the information above, it will be easier for you to recognize how appropriate your site is for your customers. Make the best of your website and see how it impacts positively on your business.