It’s such a great feeling to finish the site you’ve been building and finally have the world see how awesome it looks! You put so much into it—time, money, and energy—and you’re so happy with how it turned out.
But did you know that you need to regularly update your site to keep up with the rapidly changing landscape of the internet? It’s true. The web is constantly changing, making it important for businesses to continue optimizing for the contemporary digital world.
Take a look at why regular website updates are so important, and learn how to gauge whether your website needs a facelift below.
The internet is constantly evolving. Trends change, new applications and features are developed, best practices are updated, and the way people use the internet adjusts. Even though it’s hard to admit that something you’ve already invested so much into needs to be changed, it’s necessary if you want to see your site continue to thrive.
Take 2020 for example. Businesses had to shut down and, even once they reopened, they still weren’t able to get back to full capacity and many people were hesitant to resume visiting in person. Suddenly, digital storefronts were essential to these businesses’ survival. We saw an influx of clients asking for e-commerce solutions like Shopify and Shopify Lite.
From March 2020 through May 2021, we had a 210% increase in clients—new and existing—seeking our help to bring their sales online. Some existing clients, such as Day Owl, even came to us to refresh their existing site to meet people where they were and keep up with an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Keeping your site up-to-date with the changes of the internet and your business are key to staying competitive. It can be tough to put more money into something you’ve already invested so much into, but it’s necessary. Think of your house—you sometimes need to do unpleasant, but essential updates like buying a new stove, replacing some siding, or even getting a new smart thermostat because it’s trendy and cool. The same notion applies to your website! A site that isn’t regularly updated loses value just like a home would.
At the speed things are currently changing, this is a healthy time frame where your site may be starting to look outdated, but it’s not so outdated that it will need extensive work. You want to be ahead of the curve.
From a development standpoint (and financial standpoint), it’s easier to update a site that’s a little behind the times than one that hasn’t been changed in years. Longer waits = higher price tags when it’s time to make an update.
With that said, how much should businesses anticipate investing into their site each year? While this answer involves numerous variables, small businesses should budget about $5,000+ per year for regular digital updates. The larger the business, the more you should expect to invest.
Sometimes, your industry will see significant changes that impact you, your customers, and what people expect from your business—new regulations, new products, and new opportunities. If you notice a shift in the way your industry operates, you should update your site to reflect it.
These changes don’t always involve a major overhaul of your site, either. Sometimes all you will need is updated copy, a singular new page, or list of new services added to your menu.
Did you just announce your company’s new 5 year plan? It’s time for a redo. Your site should match the goals and objectives of your company to make sure that the messaging and branding is on par with where you want to be.
Have you added or removed a key service? This could change why people seek out your business, so your site should highlight your current offerings in the strongest way possible. You need to consider the overall impact this has on your brand beyond the obvious copy updates that would go along with this. Changing services impacts more than you think!
Has your team adjusted branding for products, stores, logos, or social media? Your website should be included in any rebranding efforts you’re making elsewhere in your business.
Are your sales or analytics not where you want them to be anymore? It may be because your site needs a refresh using current website design standards or the user journey could use some improvement. This is a powerful opportunity to use data about how users actually interact with your site to influence design.
Pay attention to what your closest competition is doing. If their site is lightyears ahead of yours in terms of design and user experience, that can majorly impact people’s decision to choose them over you. Things like aesthetics and functionality can play a big role in how potential customers view your business.
Trust your gut! You know your business best - if your gut is telling you it’s time for a site refresh, it probably is.
The moral of the story is that no website is ever truly finished. You need to consistently invest in your site to keep seeing the results you and your business need. Current Responsival client? Visit our new support portal to contact our Client Success Team and get your update started. New client? Schedule a discovery call with our sales team today!
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