Skip to content

Is it the right time for a website update?

September 12, 2023

Jenn Levreault

By Jenn Levreault, Creative Director, Breakout Studio

  • Insights
New Website

A website isn’t a snapshot. It should evolve and adapt with your company to meet the demands of your increasingly online audience.

Why a functional, scalable website matters

A good website should scale with your business and require a relatively low time and resource investment in maintenance. If your website isn’t working the way you want it to, a strategic web refresh can keep your site easily manageable and help you outperform your competition.

A website refresh can be a daunting undertaking, and we hear two very common misconceptions from management teams time and again:

It’s impossible to keep up with online trends. We’d have to rebuild our website for every new digital craze.”

It’s true that digital marketing trends change fastThat means a website that’s built and forgotten is built to fail. Embracing the inevitability of evolving technology and marketing trends will allow you to build a website that’s scalable from the start. A successful website should be prepared for growth. 

We don’t really need much of a website. We’re a word-of-mouth business.”

Many successful and established businesses are built on relationships and personal networks, but the reality in 2023 is this: the average US internet user visits over 100 websites in a single day, and recent data published by Stanford University found that 48% of users form their opinion about a company’s credibility primarily by their website design. There’s no scenario in which a robust digital presence isn’t advantageous to your business.

Why refresh your website?

Does your current website reflect your objectives? Does it tell your story? Is your audience finding your site? What are they doing when they get there? Are you generating quality leads? Are you able to track traffic and adapt to what you find? What would a website that meets these goals look like?

An update should center on actionable goals, present and future. Confusing navigation, lackluster design elements, low SEO rankings, unreliable functionality, stale messaging, and  poor user experience can tank conversions and drive traffic away from your business. A strategic update can help you leverage your web presence—but how can you know when it’s time?

New product 520x520

Signs it might be time for a website update

You’re launching a new product or line of service

A new service, product offering, or restructuring of your business likely means new content for your website. Is your current site built to expand easily? Can you add pages, update the navigation, and seamlessly incorporate your new offering into your existing site? A big shift in your organization is the perfect time to audit your current website and see whether it is working for current goals, whether it can easily accommodate new content, and whether it can become home to longer-term goals.

You need users to find and access new information intuitively. If there isn’t a logical place for your new content to live and you’re worried about future updates, the launch of a new product, service, or event can be the perfect time for a refresh. It’s also a good time to take full inventory of your branding and online presence. Big changes are simpler when they’re made structurally and strategically rather than piecemeal over time. 

Cross functionality 520x520

You lack cross-functionality across different devices or browsers

As we all spend more time online, outdated websites are becoming glaringly obvious, and one issue many businesses encounter is a website that’s performing alright on their own desktop  browser—but falling apart on a mobile device. The reality is that over half of website users are browsing from their smartphones and many others are using tablets. A website that isn’t user-friendly in these formats is no longer viable. And users are savvy, often distrusting a website that doesn’t load seamlessly on mobile. 

A website redesign can create a mobile, multi-browser friendly version of your site to be sure all users are experiencing the full power of your web presence.

Web updates 520x520

You have difficulty maintaining or updating content 
If making regular updates to your website—from blog posts to adding and removing employee bios to updating infographics or live content—is a dreaded task, consider a redesign. You should be able to access, maintain, and update content in your content management system (CMS) easily and without constant third party assistance. If this is a sticking point for you and your team, it’s time to consider a simplified, refreshed website. 

Poor analytics 520x520

Your analytics are under-performing, poor, or not-yet-harnessed
Whether your conversions are suffering, your SEO rankings have dropped, or you’re not sure how to measure performance in the first place, a website that isn’t helping you meet your KPIs is in desperate need of attention. That might mean developing some basic literacy in Google Analytics and SEO best practices to learn how your site is ranking in searches, who is visiting your site, which pages are performing best, and how people are interacting with your site. Understanding how to monitor analytics like these is the first step in optimizing your website for maximum visibility, and there are some ongoing practices you can learn to help keep your site optimized for search engines. In fact, you might want to start with our expert SEO Q&A to learn some of the basics.

That said, if you aren’t confident in your SEO plan or your ability to monitor your site’s analytics, a full web redesign by expert creatives and developers can help set you up for success from the ground up.

Your website should be built to support and measure your KPIs, from lead generation to customer experience and retention efforts. You should be able to track metrics and adapt to meet your objectives. If your website isn’t supporting these critical functions, consider an update. 

User experience 520x520

Your site’s user experience (UX) is confusing or unintuitive

If you’ve ever given up on a website due to sheer frustration, you know about bad UX. Good UX, on the other hand, should go unnoticed. A user should be able to find the information they’re looking for intuitively and click, download, subscribe, or purchase what you are offering seamlessly. When visiting your own website, it’s easy to lose sight of what matters most: your users. Your goals are not necessarily your users’ goals, and it’s imperative to design a site with user experience at the forefront of the process. Poor UX is not only unpleasant — it’s also a primary reason for driving traffic away from a site. A skilled design and development team will build a website with seamless user experience as the starting point. 

Even beautiful design can be rendered useless (and worse, frustrating to your customer base) if your website is confusing, cluttered, inconsistent, or glitchy for the users who visit it. An abnormally high bounce rate or low conversion rate can be key indicators that your website is confusing users. Perhaps your users are getting lost on their journey or having trouble finding exactly what they need. Poor user experience loses business. If this is the case, consider an update—and make sure your agency partner has the tools to prioritize user experience in creating a website that meets your goals.

Not sharing link 520x520

You don’t feel proud sharing the link
If you’re embarrassed by your website, it’s time for a change. If your site no longer matches your identity, it’s time to reconsider how you position your brand and communicate with your audience. 

If your competition is consistently outperforming and outselling you or users are constantly leaving your site without taking any action, then it’s time for a refresh. In an increasingly online world, you should feel confident in your online presence. 

Website for you 520x520

Build a website that works for you

No matter the reason behind a website redesign, the focus should be on actionable goals. A knowledgeable team of designers, writers, and developers can help you build a site that scales alongside you. 

At Breakout Studio, we take a collaborative, full-scale agency approach to rethinking and rebuilding brands and websites for leaders in every industry. We can help you evaluate your current site, audit your competitors to see where you stand in your industry, and build a website that expands your online presence and grows into the future. Check out some of our recent work or reach out to our team today to learn more about our process and start building something together.

We use cookies (and similar technologies) to collect data to improve your experience on our website. By using our website, you’re agreeing to the collection of data as described in our Privacy Policy.