Websites don’t have precise lifespans. If you are asking the question ‘how often should I upgrade my website?’, you will receive a range of different answers. Some web design companies will give you an exact answer, because they want you to commit to regular upgrades.
Each business and their website needs to be assessed on a case-by-case basis. Some sites will stay strong for five years. A poorly built website may need to be replaced after a few months. The secret to website longevity is partnering with experienced designers and developers, who also understand branding, SEO and digital marketing.
The most revealing question you can ask yourself is, ‘are my goals being met?’ If your business profits are lagging and traffic to your website is dwindling, an website update is most likely due.
What exactly is a website upgrade?
There are many misconceptions about what a website upgrade actually is. Sometimes it can mean completely starting again – a new design, new website development, new images, and new copywriting. Alternatively, an upgrade could refer to refreshing fonts and your logo, making minor adjustments to improve SEO, or installing a new WordPress theme.
Website upgrades can include updating website content regularly to improve navigation and information architecture (the grouping, ordering and labeling of content). Also, a business may make minimal changes to the design, but add in content for a large number of new products and services.
Upgrade when your business goals change
Businesses grow and change, and a great website will grow and change with them. A successful business may scale up their operations. Failed ventures and new opportunities see many businesses changing the way they work.
If your existing website does not match your current business goals, it will need upgrading. This could be small or large changes, depending on what your goals actually are.
A bricks and mortar store may be comfortable with a small static website for many years, until they decide to sell their products online with an ecommerce store. This will require a major upgrade to their existing website, and they will most likely benefit from a completely new design and development.
Gain control over your own site
Static websites can look and function exceedingly well, but they have one major flaw. All content updates need to be completed by a web developer. The website owner will need to outsource every change to their content. This includes posting a new blog, changing a phone number, or fixing a spelling mistake.
Many business owners are completely happy with this arrangement. They may partner with a full service agency, like Design Point, because they want to focus on what they do best. Alternatively they may decide to upgrade their website to a Content Management System (CMS), like WordPress.
A CMS will help both design agencies and their clients manage content on their website. It helps manage large and expanding websites, and streamlines SEO efforts.
When your existing website is poorly built
Although business owners don’t want to admit paying for a website that doesn’t work, it happens often. Starting again is usually cheaper than upgrading a poorly built website. Inexperienced web developers may rely on building a site with plugins, not solid web development.
A website redesign to improve your online marketing
The need for more customers is the primary reason websites are improved. You can’t earn money if people don’t know you exist. A successful website is attractive to customers, provides information they need, and can be found easily on Google.
A new website will be optimised for appearance in search engines, and be focused on acquiring and converting potential customers.
Benefit from new technologies
Examples of outdated website technologies include early versions of HTML or CSS code. Also, websites should now be secured with https, so if your current website is using http protocol, you should contact your developer.
Many early design features are now outdated. Websites were once only viewed on desktops, not mobile phones, tablets or televisions. With so many consumers accessing information on their smartphones, your website should function effortlessly on all devices. Older websites will need to upgrade to a new, responsive design. This is also called a ‘mobile-friendly’ website.
Choosing a web design agency
The perfect design agency will create you a brilliant website, that is on-brand and attracts new customers. Design Point in Melbourne will do exactly this, and ensure your website is ready to grow as your business does.
We can design you a new website, and upgrade your site as required. We are ready to support you now, and help you plan for a successful future. Please contact us for more information.