Michael Georgiou
Michael Georgiou 12 August 2016

How A Website Design Upgrade Can Boost Your Business

Web design is about more than the aesthetics. A beautifully and thoughtfully designed website is a joy to use, providing a seamless UX built through a combination of strategic and creative thinking.

Research has found that a website’s design can influence consumer behaviour and have a decisive impact on their decision to buy. A website is a great marketing and branding tool. Its ultimate purpose is to create a better user experience and bring a business greater traffic and a higher number of conversions.

But like all things, websites get old and can begin to feel irrelevant if they don’t keep up with the times. SEO begins to slip and sag, along with it the rankings, leaving you wondering where your visitors have gone. If your website has been around for a few years without many updates, it may be time to freshen up that design.

Design influences sales

Studies have found that aesthetics play a direct role in sales.

Consumers love visiting websites that are attractive, intuitive and easy to navigate.

Ease of use and appealing visuals make for a strong combination, regardless of the industry you are in. For those in creative fields, or areas in which visuals can play a decisive role (such as fashion or food) this has an even bigger impact.

Humans are visual creatures. A website with an impressive UI and an equally fantastic UX will not just make visitors stay on, but also improve its recall value in their minds.

When a visitor’s attention is hooked and the products and content are relevant to their purposes, a sale is usually the result.

Fast loading time

This is critical to make people stay on your website. We live in a world where the term ‘instant gratification’ has taken on a new meaning. It’s almost nano-instant gratification now. No one wants to wait for a page to load. Even five seconds feel like an eternity.

For visitors who arrive at your site organically, a slow loading website will make them lose interest faster than you could imagine.

Even if your website used to load quick initially, however many years ago that was, it may slow down over time due to a number of reasons. With a fresh design, a website can load faster, and anything that makes visitors stay on a website is good for business. Loading time also impacts a website’s search ranking.

Fix the bugs

Ever visited a website where everything just worked? Where you could find what you needed without having to pause for a moment and think, “Hmm… So where do I go now?” Where you were fluidly taken from page to page, or product to product, in a seamless fashion? Where everything came together beautifully to deliver a great experience, impressing on you the philosophy of the brand, the professionalism of its owners, and the reliability of the business?

This is only possible when a website works silky smooth, there are no bugs, no broken links, no “Oops, we couldn’t find what you are looking for,” or “Something went wrong, please visit after some time!”

Don’t give your visitors “Oops moments.” These can develop over time with websites. Bugs have this annoying habit of appearing out of seemingly nowhere and taking up permanent residence on the website. Unless you are technically savvy and keep sincere tabs on each and every page of your website on a weekly basis, these might escape your notice. With a design upgrade, you can fix all that is broken or not working as desired.

Highlight important content

As a website evolves, its priorities might change, which means the content will evolve over time. Most businesses get better at creating content with practice, but that means past content could appear downright cringeworthy, embarrassing, even detrimental to SEO purposes. If that is the case, do not hesitate in fixing it or removing it from the blog.

Similarly, you may have created something far better, pieces of content you want to take center stage – a welcome video, for instance, or a glorious infographic. You should be able to move these elements around depending on your priorities and bring the important content to the forefront. You can do this with a design upgrade.

Keep up with the brand’s philosophy

A design change is sometimes warranted when a brand begins to feel stale or if a business has diversified. With rebranding, a redesign is an absolute must. But even if you are not rebranding, a design change can help capture the subtle shifts in a brand’s philosophy, its newer aspirations, and better reflect its growing and diverse audience.

Keep up with the trends

Each year we see new trends come and go, does that mean we should keep changing our design every six months?

No. But most business owners would know when their website begins to look and feel outdated. If you’ve gone for three years without any change in website design, you know you are due for an upgrade.

Actually, you don’t even have an option. Three years is a phenomenally long time in the world of website technology and the internet in general.

A ton of new features, an entire array of novel plugins, and several security requirements would have cropped up during this time. Competition may have raced ahead. These days all websites are expected to be responsive and load as fast on mobile devices as on desktops.

With regular upgrades a website can stay current, safe, and relevant for users, all of which is good for the bottom line.

Become more user-friendly

Ultimately this is what it’s all about. Users often give clear feedback about the various aspects of using a website and the overall experience of doing business on it. If you have been listening to the users, you’ll be able to deliver a friendlier design by addressing these concerns and incorporating their views into the upgrade – making everyone happy and rewarding their engagement!

Design is the way to success

Apart from resulting in a better looking website, a design upgrade has a strong business value. Mobile-responsiveness, social integration, ease of navigation, fast loading times, up to date SEO and a compelling user experience – these translate into dollars for businesses.

A good website is like a new car – it’ll run for a long time, but you need to keep it topped off with gas, change the oil, and rotate the tires every now and then to keep it running smoothly. How long has it been since you looked at your website with a critical eye and combed it for errors? Have you updated your SEO for the latest Google algorithm? Do you have all the newest plugin updates?

Do some research on the newest trends in web design and development, and explore all the latest expectations and upgrades in new technology. If your website doesn’t make the grade, you’re probably losing business. Don’t let your website putter out on the side of the road – give it an oil change, rotate those tires, and let it take you to new heights!

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