Websites are living, breathing, evolving tools used to engage your core audience. They are what your customers see first when approaching your business. Consumers use your website to make an impression of your business. Websites, therefore, are a reflection of your business’s health.
If a website appears unhealthy, its audience will view the business of the website less favorably than had the website appealed to and engaged them. In fact, a recent study done by Blue Corona found that 48% of people cite “web design as the number one factor in deciding the credibility of the business.”
Upgrading your website isn’t the only way to maintain a credible and appealing website, but, it’s definitely a sure-fire option. Now, upgrades aren’t free; they do require planning and investment resources. But, the benefits of an upgrade typically outweigh the costs of an upgrade. Those benefits are: increased user engagement, bounce rate reduction, greater audience reach, and, ultimately more conversions.
If you’re not sure if your website is ready for an upgrade, keep reading this article to find out if it’s time. We have compiled 6 of the top signs a website is ready for an upgrade.
Content Management System (CMS) is Outdated
If your CMS hasn’t seen an upgrade in over three years, chances are it’s reaching the end of its lifespan. When a new version of a CMS is released, like Drupal 9 in 2020, what happens to the earlier versions? Typically, older versions are slowly phased out and eventually become unsupported.
What that means is, if you find yourself with an outdated, unsupported website, you may have a website that cannot be fixed once broken. Yikes! Costs incurred from dealing with an unfixable website are likely to be higher than the costs of a strategically planned website upgrade.
The best way to prevent the costs of an outdated website breakdown is to routinely watch for new versions of your CMS being unveiled. Then, adopt those new versions sooner than later. If your operating CMS version is two or more versions behind the most recently released one, it’s definitely time to get working on an upgrade plan.
Security and Privacy Compliant
Cybersecurity and consumer privacy issues have brought about new cyber-specific regulations that are changing the look and feel of the online environment.
The EU’s introduction of its GDPR in 2018 changed how online companies and institutions deal with their customers’ personal information. Practically everyone with a client-serving website needed to make adjustments to be compliant. Companies that are found to be non-compliant with GDPR, like Google in 2019, can be dealt a hefty price-tag if their website is found to be GDPR non-compliant.
Another more-strict, privacy act coming into effect in 2020 is the State of California’s Consumer Protection Act (CCPA). The California law is expected to have harsher fines and penalties than the EU’s GDPR. Preventing the costly risks of being found non-compliant by GDPR or CCPA can be achieved by a thoughtful and in-depth website upgrade from our team at North Studio.
Want to learn more about CCPA? Read our blog:
Website is Not Responsive
Responsive websites are sites that function equally well on desktops as they do on mobile devices. They have the same layout and visual appearance across all devices. Responsive websites create an equal user experience for all of your website’s visitors; regardless of the accessing device.
Being able to offer your website users the same high-quality experience and services on all electronic devices is powerful. Powerful, because it makes it easier for users to engage and connect with your site. Website upgrades are ideal opportunities to dramatically improve your site’s user experience capabilities by making it run smoothly on all devices.
Fun Fact: 90% of people use multiple screens sequentially!
Maintenance Costs are Increasing
If you start to see a rise in support and maintenance costs related to the operation of your website, it’s probably a good time to start planning for a website upgrade.
Like all high-calibre instruments and machines, websites need regular support and routine maintenance to function optimally. While a regimented maintenance plan for your website will keep it running efficiently, it still won’t guarantee your high-caliber website has immortality. When repairs to your website increase in frequency between scheduled maintenance intervals, plan to put a website upgrade on your horizon.
Why are support and maintenance so important for website health?
Analytical Metrics Goals Aren’t Reached
As websites age, they often become less compatible with emerging technologies, and therefore, less easy to access or use by viewers. This is often revealed in your website’s analytical reports. Viewers may be choosing to engage with other sites that have been upgraded more recently and are better able to meet their needs.
If your tried and true methods of fine-tuning your website’s traffic are becoming less and less effective, it may be the result of an aging website competing against younger, faster ones. When analytical metrics are consistently headed in a downward trend, add website upgrade as a possible solution to consider.
Why is Google Analytics used by over 29 million websites? Find out here:
Out of Style
Trends change rapidly in the tech industry, much like they do in most other consumer driven industries. Being able to provide your consumers, (who are your visitors!) with a fresh and engaging product on a regular basis is key for a successful website. Upgrades can accomplish exactly that. And, today’s upgrade options can make it easier for in-house content managers to add fresh content without the need for a web developer.
Website upgrades in 2019 can address all angles of your website; both front-end experiences and back-end logistics. When executing a fullstack upgrade approach incorporating the developing trends in visual style and UI functions is easier than ever. Choose to include in-style and in-demand features, like artificial intelligence (AI) based options. The latest trends in AI include chatbots, time-optimized contacts, or content recommendations.
Curious about today’s leading AI trends?
If your business is looking to improve your audience’s experience when interacting with your website, consider creating an upgrade strategy and plan. For an in-depth look at what upgrades would be best for your needs, and how to execute a successful upgrade plan, consult the highly experienced team at North Studio.