We’ve seen it before. You stumble upon a website and it just feels… old. Stale. Out of date. You can’t quite put your finger on it, but something about the company homepage is making you bored and uninterested. Many times clients come to us feeling the same about their own website and it’s our job to pick apart the elements that are dating the website and, ultimately, the brand.
If you find your website with one or many of the following design challenges, it’s time to invest in a redesign:
1. Dated Screen Resolutions
Is your website not fit for mobile and tablet? Or worse, is it still not even sized for a laptop? It’s frightening to find a website still at 800 x 600 pixels, but they’re out there. Incorrect or unnecessary screen sizes make your website difficult to navigate for modern day technology and can communicate to your customer that you’re just not up with the times.
2. Too Much Flash
Finding an excess of Flash on a website homepage makes us cringe. Most of the time it’s not well-done or captivating animation or isn’t on part of the website that should even be in Flash (e.g. the navigation bar). Incorporating Flash on a website was a good idea 10 years ago, but today most website users’ are using non-flash supported technology (e.g. smartphones). Therefore, instead of seeing your animated website, it’s only gray boxes.
3. Table Based Design
While still used in some digital marketing tactics – such as email marketing – a website with the majority of HTML done in tables translates as boxy and limits the potential of newer web development coding. While any ol’ visitor may not recognize the table-based layout, oftentimes this design method is one of the primary consequences to a websites perceived old age.
4. Poor Hosting
For every additional second it takes a website to load, page abandonment rises. While there are a few factors that play into slow response time, one of the largest and most costly is partnering with a poor domain hosting provider. These archaic services not only charge an arm and a leg, but also conduct poor practices such as hosting multiple domains on a single server.
5. Default Fonts
There are a variety of web-safe typography options out there – so going with Arial, Helvetica, or Times New Roman is selling your website short. The “type of type” used can dramatically change the look and feel of a website. Using a designer font sends a professional and refreshing message to a website visitor – differentiating you for your competitor.
6. No Social Platforms
Today, if your company isn’t utilizing at least one social media platform and having “follow us” features on the website, it discredits your business. Lack of social media shows the company isn’t innovative, short-staffed and uninteresting. Including social media buttons is essential, but remember that also holds you accountable to updating the platform with engaging content.
7. Lacking Customized Landing Pages
With inbound marketing on the rise, sending your website visitors to a homepage, about page or contact us page during a marketing push is unacceptable. Whether it’s to find more information, download a white paper or read a blog post— web users are savvier than ever and expect a link to not require them to dig around more on your site.
8. Your Last Website Launch Was During the Bush Era
When was the last time you refreshed that website design? Has it not been touched since the launch date? Sometimes a website will look old because, well, it is! Typically, a website design should last about five years. Once it starts hitting kindergarten age, it’s time to refresh and tweak the design to meet new standards.
Article courtesy of Karen Jensen, Creative Principle, of BOP Design.