When should I look at refreshing my website design?

Your website acts as a digital storefront for your business and is quite often the first point of contact between your business and potential customers. Just like a physical shop would get a fresh coat of paint or modifications to make it more appealing, your website design also needs updating, but when should you look at refreshing your website design?

Outdated design trends

In the world of website design, trends are rapidly changing. What was cutting-edge a few years ago (ie. websites with a LOT of content, use of flash-based graphics, fixed-width templates, cluttered sidebars, infinite scroll without pagination) may now appear outdated and less user-friendly.

If your website design relies heavily on outdated elements like Flash, busy backgrounds or excessive animations, it's probably time for a refresh. Modern design trends emphasise minimalism, full-width clean layouts and mobile responsiveness.

Take a look at our Portfolio page for some inspiration for your next website design.

Poor user experience

How a user experiences your website is a critical factor in retaining visitors. If your target market finds it difficult to navigate your website, the pages load slowly, or they encounter broken links, it's a sign that your site needs attention.

Conducting regular UX audits and gathering user feedback from your existing customers can help identify areas for improvement and will give you a starting point of areas to address when refreshing your website design.

High bounce rates

A high bounce rate indicates that visitors are leaving your site shortly after arriving, often because they don't find the content engaging or relevant. Analyse your website's analytics to identify pages with exceptionally high bounce rates. These are the pages that likely need design or content updates.

Rebranding or updated branding

If your business has recently undergone a rebranding or updated its brand guidelines, your website should most definitely reflect these changes. Inconsistent branding can confuse visitors and harm your brand's credibility.

Mobile responsiveness

With the increasing use of mobile devices, having a responsive website design is no longer optional – it’s a crucial component of a successful website design.

If your site isn't mobile-friendly, you risk losing a significant portion of your audience. Google also prioritises mobile-friendly sites in search rankings, which is a critical factor for search engine optimisation (SEO).

There are multiple websites where you can test how your website looks on various devices – take a look at how your website appears and make any necessary adjustments.

Content strategy changes

If there’s been a shift in your business content strategy or you’ve expanded your offerings, your website should reflect these changes. Ensure that the content on your site is up-to-date, accurate and aligns with your current business goals.

Take a look at your competitors

Regularly reviewing your competitors' websites can provide valuable insights. If you notice that their sites have more modern designs, better functionality, or more engaging content, it's a sign that your site may be falling behind.

If you’ve checked out the websites of your competitors and yours is one of the most outdated designs, then it’s really important for you to update the look and feel of your website so you can remain competitive within your industry.

Technological updates

Advancements in web technology can enhance user experiences. If your site doesn't incorporate features like chatbots, well-placed pop-up windows, improved site search or other interactive elements, it might be time to explore these options.

Security issues

Cybersecurity is a top priority. If your website is outdated because the software hasn’t been updated and maintained, it may be vulnerable to security breaches.

The best way to keep your website secure and avoid hacking attempts is to regularly update your content management system (CMS) and plugins –it’s an essential process to maintaining the security of your site.

User feedback

Listening to your website's users is invaluable. If you receive feedback about usability issues, design flaws, mobile device issues or outdated content, take it seriously and use it as a basis for updates.

Your website is a dynamic entity that should be constantly evolving alongside your business, industry trends and customer expectations. Ignoring the signs that it's time to refresh can lead to missed opportunities and a less competitive online presence.

Regularly assessing your website's performance, user experience and design can help you stay ahead of your competitors and ensure that your online presence continues to engage and convert visitors effectively.