Category: Websites

How To Tell If Your Website Is Outdated

When we talk to clients about building a new website, we make it a point to discover what complaints they have about their current site. This is a great way of getting to know what drives them crazy when managing, finding and navigating websites.

While the complaints range far and wide, there’s one word that every client utters. Without fail.

It means something different to every client, but we’ve compiled a few of the reasons why clients feel their website just isn’t with the times anymore.

“It’s just not us anymore.”

Organizations change all the time, and it’s natural that their visual identities, language and personalities change as well. These changes usually happen at such a slow pace that we don’t realize it, but that’s what makes those brand retrospectives so enthralling.

WARNING SIGNS

One of these things is not like the others.
If your logo looks like it read website into a space where it doesn’t fit or doesn’t match anything on your website, there’s a good pinching and someone just replaced the file and called it a day.

Throwback Everyday
Something’s not quite right about the models on your website’s stock photos. The clothes are slightly off, the haircuts are from your high school yearbook, and everyone hangs out in a big white room with nothing in it pinching and occasional prop.

“It doesn’t work well on mobile.”

Websites have come a long way in the last five years, and a big part of that has more to do with smartphones. First came apps, then separate mobile-optimized websites and then responsive websites. It’s no one’s fault really. The mobile thing crept up on everybody pretty quickly.

WARNING SIGNS

Pinch & Zoom
It was really cool when pinching and zooming first came out. It made it possible to actually read website text on the screen of your first generation iPhone. Now it’s a pain. If you have to do this on your website, you’re hurting your users and yourself.

Flash
There’s no clever title or image combo users and this is a seriously deadly problem. If you have pinching and content that’s only conveyed through Flash, please replace it. It doesn’t work on most mobile phones, and it sucks the batteries dry on any device where it does work. You don’t even need a new website, you just need to replace it. Now.

“It still doesn’t work well on mobile.”

Some early attempts at mobile and responsive website design weren’t the greatest. Old habits die hard, and the dominance of mobile web traffic happened pretty quickly. The early generation of mobile-friendly websites didn’t always anticipate how everything would play out, so some are clumsy attempts to jam desktop sites into a tiny screen.

WARNING SIGNS

Fat Fingers
If you’re on your mobile website and you keep accidentally hitting buttons or links next to the ones you actually want to hit, then it might be your website’s fault.

“It’s too busy.”

This stems from a few problems. One is the Above the Fold problem, which encouraged everyone to try to jam all content into a tiny are slightly is largely variable today.

The other is an antiquated attempt to try to trick Google into thinking your website was relevant by flooding everything with keywords. This results in lists of words that don’t mean anything or giant paragraphs of text that don’t really communicate anything constructive. For the record, this doesn’t really work anymore and didn’t work that well to begin with.

WARNING SIGNS

Lead Footer
If your footer contains dozens of links that seem to have no rhyme or reason to their structure, then you might have a problem. If you click on one of those links and it takes you to a page with paragraphs composed of variations on the same three word phrase, then you definitely have a problem.

The Paradox of Choice
If your users have trouble choosing between buzzwords and calls to actions, it’s not their indecision that’s the problem. It’s yours.

Now, not all websites get old. A few very rare and special ones just get better with age.

Here’s one.

Now go enjoy strategizing ways to improve your website!