If you’re like most business owners, redesigning your company website is the last thing on your mind.
But if you haven’t thought about it lately, odds are good it’s past time to do it.
Gone are the days when a website was just a fancy digital brochure for your business. People now start their search for any kind of product or service by going online. Service-based businesses that make their money by providing unique value need a website that reflects that value.
With today’s tools, it’s easier than ever to make a website that looks good. But a website needs to do more than just tick a few boxes. It must be built from the ground up for digital marketing: including all the techniques that determine whether you show up in search results related to your business.
If your website is five years old or older, it’s already behind the times.
What Makes a Website “Good”? It’s More Than a Matter of Opinion
What makes a “good” website depends on three factors, all of them dictated from outside:
- The basic marketing and design techniques your core audience responds to in a website
- The technologies, from smartphones to smart assistants, people use to reach your website
- What Google – the de facto architect of the modern internet – deems the best user experience
Over the last five years alone, Google has made hundreds of changes to its search algorithm. On paper, each one of these is intended to ensure that only the fastest, most secure, and easiest to use among all websites will be ranked near the top for any given search term.
That means a website redesign isn’t just a matter of a little spit and polish. If more than a year has gone by, it’s probably time to look under the hood. To give just one example, every page of your website must be responsive on mobile, shifting its visuals and navigation so it’s friendly to smartphone users.
This is just one factor (and one of the best known) among thousands.
A Good Website Is No Longer a One-Time Investment
For your website to really work for you, it needs to convert traffic into real business value. In the long run, for most brands, that means moving people from first-time visitors to social media followers, email subscribers, and ultimately, customers. Websites that don’t convert traffic cost more than they produce.
The parameters that let you achieve these goals are constantly in flux. So, instead of something you revisit occasionally, your business website needs to be evolving constantly. That’s why New York Ave treats every website design as a long-term engagement with updates performed every single month.
Over years of experience, we’ve learned that continuous updates are the way to get and keep Google’s attention so it is more likely to reassess your search rank and give you credit for your hard work. At the same time, the challenge of finding ways to continuously improve keeps a website fresh and functional.
In a world where you can hire a freelancer on PeoplePerHour and get “a website” for $100, we’re proud to push the envelope. Our typical website design engagement takes anywhere from three to six months for planning and launch – because it reflects your brand, your audience, and your goals in every detail.
No matter what industry you’re in, your average customer sees hundreds or thousands of websites each month. You can only stand out by creating a website where your knowledge about your ideal customer comes to life. We help you get there with techniques proven to help businesses like yours.
Once the website goes live, we analyze traffic figures to understand who’s coming to your website, how they’re getting there, and what they’re doing once they arrive. This data-driven approach lets us make dozens or even hundreds of adjustments monthly, resulting in more user engagement.
When users easily find the information they’re looking for, it plants the seeds of trust between them and your business. The longer they spend on your website, the more likely they are to learn all your brand has to offer and recognize when they have a need you can help with.
This makes a winning difference because the vast majority of people who discover your website for the first time aren’t really ready to buy from you. They’re dealing with a problem or question and looking for information, not necessarily a solution. It may take weeks or months for them to make a buy.
Who finally makes the sale? The brand they know, like, and trust. Your website positions you as a trusted advisor.
That’s why, even though those dozens of tweaks per month might only increase your results by 1%, a long-term strategy is the clear winner. That 1% becomes 2%, and so on, month after month. Soon, a modern website is the cornerstone of your digital marketing, working for you 24 hours a day.
It doesn’t take long for those compounding returns to transform into an organic competitive advantage – one nobody can match simply by buying paid traffic. And the sooner you start seeing your website as an asset that’s never truly “done,” the sooner you can start outperforming your market.
The Real Answer to How Often You Should Refresh Your Website Design
As a leading East Coast marketing agency, here’s what we’ve observed in our customer portfolio.
Businesses that combine regular updates throughout the month with an annual website design refresh see superior results compared to competitors, especially those who rarely update their own websites.
Occasional updates throughout the month have the dual outcome of giving real human visitors more things to see and do while signaling search engines that your website is a reliable, authoritative source.
On the other hand, an annual website design refresh is the perfect way to pare back on features and techniques that no longer reflect best practices, while introducing the best of the next generation in a controlled way.
Without periodic changes, websites have a tendency to become bloated. They end up with outdated links, broken images, and much more. This makes it harder to find what people are looking for and undermines the trust your brand needs to establish online.
A yearly refresh might seem like a big job, but it takes less effort compared to the same work every 3-5 years. By reviewing your website annually, you’re making sure you never have to make a huge leap to get where you need to go.
It’s those “big leaps,” where you have to introduce new technologies and features just to keep up, that have the greatest risk of bringing your website down or causing it to act in unexpected ways. And you can’t afford to have your website down for even one day.
At New York Ave, we make the process easier for you. Our team can handle your website design updates while you stay focused on what you do best. Contact us to learn more.