It is 2018, so no one needs to tell you that a website is essential for your business. With 88% of Australians regularly accessing the internet, we think it’s safe to assume the word on website necessity has been sufficiently spread. We’re all on board. Websites are important. What you may not realise is that websites are not a “set and forget” channel to reaching your customers. Not anymore, at least.
With technology moving at whiplash-inducing speeds, your website needs to be updated, modernised and optimised to survive in 2018 and beyond. Even if you launched it last year, it is worth an audit, to ensure it is performing optimally and serving your business as best it can.
Here are 6 reasons you could be in need of a new website:
1. Not Mobile-Friendly
If you didn’t get the memo about Google’s mobile Armageddon in 2015 and immediately go out and ensure your website was mobile responsive, then it is most definitely time to call in the doctors, because your website is essentially offline. Australia has a population of 24.6 million, 88% of these people own and operate a smartphone. If your website is not mobile friendly, 88% of Australians are going to find it very difficult to find you; unless, of course, they go home to search for you on the PC. Just kidding, that won’t happen.
2. Outdated Design
Today the importance of a good online first impression is more important than it has ever been in person. Great design allows your customers to easily browse your website in a manner that is intuitive and simple, effortlessly gliding from page to page as though they have explored your website 100 times before. An optimised, contemporary design keeps your audience engaged and interacting with your site for longer. If your website looks visually outdated, your customers assume that your business is outdated and once they leave your site, you will not get another chance to bring them back and impress them.
3. Ineffective Content
So, you have a beautifully designed website, now it needs the right content to ensure it’s not only pretty but it is also informative and engaging. Clever content enriches your customer’s online experience; keeping them on your website for longer, building their relationship with your brand and encouraging them back. Creating strong content is a craft, the written communication on your website must flow easily, educate customers about your business and your products/services, while also leaving enough intrigue to encourage them to engage with you, whether online or in-store.
4. Ineffective CTAs
What is the purpose of your website? With all the noise out there and however many millions of websites that people could stumble across, finding yours is a great opportunity that should be taken. Call to actions (CTAs) are what prompts your online audience to purchase, call, give their information or visit in-store; take some sort of action. This can be taking their email address so that you can contact them again, prompting them to make a purchase online or prompting them to call you or come in-store to take advantage of any offer. No opportunity should be missed to convert your customers to the next step, whatever that step may be for your business.
5. Not SEO Friendly
Search Engine Optimisation is what allows new customers to find you in Google search results. You need to ensure Google understands that your website is relevant in order to rank your website higher in search results. This will make you more visible to your target audience. Improving your site’s SEO requires a solid URL structure, appropriate use of keywords, internal and external linking and more!
6. Slow Page Load Times
Perhaps you have a visually stunning website with beautiful crafted written and visual content, that which you witness in awe, but if it takes even 5 seconds to load you can say goodbye to your site visitors. The average customer expects a website to load in 2 second or less – emphasis on less. There are many factors which contribute to slow page load times, from design to images and links, failing to understand and improve these will cause you to lose your audience. Google’s algorithms will also push your site down on the search engine ranking page; making you invisible.
It is not easy to keep ahead of Google’s algorithms and the customers ever-increasing expectations from product and service, to visual aesthetic both online and instore. For small to medium businesses, it is easy to get lost when it comes to what exactly you must do to stay in the race, and what is simply a fad. There are many web development companies in Sydney, many that will whip you up a site for less than the cost of brunch in our gloriously overpriced cafes, but the best digital agencies in Sydney will set you up to be competitive online. Not just for today, but for the future.