How do you know when it’s time to launch a new website? We get asked this question a lot. And unfortunately, it’s not really a black and white question. Maybe things break every time you try to make a simple text change. Maybe you just want to add a new blog post or change the headline on a page, but you can’t because you’re not a developer. Maybe the way the site is organized just doesn’t make sense for your organization anymore. Maybe you really can’t stand the look of it but struggle to find the KPI for “I hate how it looks”.
Maybe it’s obvious, but maybe it’s subjective. So, how do you know when you’re beyond repair and it’s time to really start this process?
We went through a similar exercise recently, which you may have noticed with our recent re-launch of ctpboston.com. For us, it was a little more obvious. Here are some things to look out for on your own site.
Your messaging shifted
As a service-oriented company with expertise and production skills that are, at times, intangible, it was imperative that our site sell through our capabilities and passion around our projects through examples of our work and solutions that we offer. The old website was focused more on our culture and methodology, which is still important (because we’re pretty awesome), but our priorities shifted, and our website needed to follow suit.
You refreshed your branding
On top of that, we gave our brand a bit of a makeover and needed the new site to reflect our logo, aesthetic, and color palette. Refreshing a website’s design doesn’t always require a brand new site build, when you can easily refresh the frontend theme, but this was a huge factor in our decision to rebuild.
Your technology is no longer best practice
The website was six years old. We should be able to leave that sentence there, alone, and end the blog post. Managing your own website and your own content should be the easiest part of your job so you can spend time doing other things, but it was becoming a thorn for our team. The truth is, the advancements in CMS technology have led to significant efficiencies from an automation and workflow perspective that should be considered baseline requirements for any website. And, it might go without saying but if your website isn’t responsive then you have a whole different set of issues you definitely need to address.
Your organic search performance is suffering
We needed a more scalable sitemap inclusive of unique pages that could be optimized for our core keywords, and, the backend of the existing site was a few steps behind what’s considered best practices for optimization capabilities.
Communicating with our current clients, prospects, partners and new employees is critical in our industry built on…communication. When the hub for our communication is not doing its job, and the tool itself impairs our ability to do what we do best, it’s time to re-evaluate. Because when it is more efficient and cost-effective to rebuild a website than to keep trying to enhance the existing one, it’s probably time to start exploring a new build.