Your website has an expiration date. When is it time to redesign?

Rebekah Pike

Websites don’t last forever

(even websites from Control Yours, which are especially awesome 😉)

We’ve been around long enough now to watch our clients go through some big shifts and transitions with their businesses (remember that one time when 2020 happened? I rest my case). And along the way, we’ve been asked to revisit and redesign hundreds of websites that had been humming along just fine, but were starting to show signs of wear and tear.

Now before you get nervous, we want to set your mind at ease. Having a website that needs a little TLC is … completely normal. 😅

In fact, we recommend that you consider a site redesign approximately every 5 years. And we are always absolutely thrilled when a client asks us to reimagine an old website with them. Those are exactly the kind of loyal, long-term relationships we want to build with our clients.

Plus, it’s an incredibly good excuse to schedule a meeting and catch up!

We know how much a business can grow and change over time and 5 years is eons in the internet world. Technology changes, your brand changes, your customer changes, your business changes – it’s all part of the process!

The financial investment for a website redesign is significant and takes some planning. So we thought it might be helpful to explain our thoughts about when and why a redesign should be a priority.

(And heads up – we actually have an assessment tool available that makes this redesign planning process even simpler – keep reading to learn more!)

The basics: experience and structure

Before we start digging into specifics, it’s important to understand there are two fundamental components of website design that will require updating and rethinking as your site ages.

Visitor experience

In a nutshell, this is what a customer sees and interacts with on your website. Think colors, graphic elements, content sections, images, etc. It’s basically the digital version of a storefront window.

Your visual elements should be compelling and engaging enough that a casual scroll through your homepage is all it takes for a customer to get a sense of your company’s unique brand and core values.

Technical structure

This refers to your website’s internal coding that is invisible to customers, but foundational to how well your website functions.

  • How does the site look and perform on different devices?
  • How does it help your business capture leads and track engagement?
  • How does it interact with search engines?
  • How seamless is the point of sale experience?

Aesthetics are important, but a visually stunning website is worthless if it doesn’t help you gather leads, stay one step ahead of competitors and generate sales.

Planning your redesign

We don’t believe in one-size-fits-all websites. Your planning process is going to be completely unique to your business and that’s the way it should be! We recommend that you set aside some time, grab a pen and paper (or the digital equivalent) and start making some notes and observations about your website

Need help getting started? Here are some questions to think about.

Does my website need a visual reset?

Answer: probably. 😅

Design trends change fairly rapidly and while you may not think that “trendy” is what you’re going for, you do want your site design to look modern, updated and in line with your top competition. If you suspect that a customer’s first impression of your website is less than “Wow!”, it’s probably time for a redesign.

A thoughtful website design does more than just “look good.” It communicates your whole brand and showcases your product or service. We’d be willing to bet that the design you loved 5 years ago is starting to feel a little stale and in need of a refresh.

Need some inspiration? Check out our round-up of website design trends for 2021!

Does my website’s code need a tune-up?

Don’t worry – we don’t expect you to know how to analyze all the digital nuts and bolts of your website. In fact, we highly recommend that you sign-up for our CY membership and let us handle things like maintenance, software updates, encryption … all that “techie” stuff.

BUT – what you need to know is that even our tech wizards can’t write code that lasts forever. Just like your design and content, code needs to be updated to meet current performance standards. Our team can provide little patches and quick fixes between redesigns, but sooner or later, you’re going to need a complete technical update.

Not a CY member yet? Learn more!

Is my website integrated seamlessly with my marketing plan?

Fact: “web presence” isn’t going to cut it in the digital marketing world of 2021.

You need a lot more than just a website. You need a targeted digital advertising plan and multiple avenues for customer engagement. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered here. 💪

Here are some questions to think about:

  • How are people finding your website right now (social media, search engines etc.)?
  • Who is your ideal customer and how are you reaching them?
  • What is the primary action you want customers to take on your site (buy a product, schedule a meeting, etc.)

We will discuss all these questions with you during your redesign process and make sure that your website is built to support your marketing and advertising goals.

And because we always want to offer your business more than just a new website, we’d also LOVE to help you build a digital advertising plan that is fully trackable and customized to your target audience.

Does this content accurately reflect where my business is today?

This is a GREAT question, because if your website isn’t communicating the story you want to tell … then what’s the point of having a website, right?

It’s 100% normal for a brand and business to evolve as time goes by. The content and branding strategy that seemed spot-on 5 years ago might be outdated and irrelevant now. And honestly, that’s probably a good thing! We love to see businesses that are growing and expanding into new products and markets.

Part of your redesign process should involve analyzing your site’s written copy and visual content to ensure that your messaging is on point.

Get the ultimate website redesign planner here!

It’s our Website Assessment Guide! This is a handy resource we developed to help business owners analyze their websites from a professional’s point of view. It’s packed with checklists, action items, self-evaluations and more.

If you feel like your website needs a fresh direction, we highly recommend you check it out. Get the Guide!

You’re sold. You’re all in on a redesign 🥳 … what’s next?

Yessss! We’re so excited to work with you. Schedule a call or Zoom meeting with us and let’s get started!

Here are some more resources we think you’ll love.
Ready for a deep dive into your customer’s experience? Read this.
Want a general timeline of our redesign process? Click here.
Love a good checklist? 9 Things To Do Before You Create Your Website