Okay, hands up, the web design Windsor team at Cayenne Red might well advise their clients to change their websites on a regular basis, but there is wisdom in our words.
No-one would think of wearing the same clothes, day in, day out, for the whole year (well, maybe some of our designers, but not normal people), so in the same way we change for the seasons, a website needs to have a change of clothes at least twice a year.
We are not advocating a complete change. A good website design should have a shelf life of at least two years, if not five. But twice yearly, there should be some changes introduced.
And the reason for this regular facelift is not to keep web designers in business, but to stop a site looking stale, or boring, or possibly worse, behind the times.
And if you want proof as to whether this is a valid argument, then use one of the tools which allows you to look at sites as they were some years ago, and even five years ago. The results will shock you, because most sites change on a regular basis, not only keeping up with the fashions and trends of the day, but also keeping pace with the latest technology advancements.
Websites are still predominantly text based, but you will notice that around the most active websites, the text is surrounded by all manner of plug-ins and software tools. Text may be the search engines friend, but multi-media is playing an increasing important role.
Sites have to be very strong visually and use all manner of techniques to reinforce the central sales messages and calls to actions. And the worse thing a site can be accused of is, is looking staid and boring.
Surfers are fickle and the more they see of sites, the more demanding they are. This is why, despite users moaning when a site changes (look at how Facebook changes are met); the designers know that they have to remain fresh and innovative.
A website cannot be seen to stand still, because the fear is, a bored user will move allegiances and be gone to a competitor in a flash of an eye-lid. And once one goes, more will follow, given that many surfers are like sheep and will follow their friends, colleagues and peers.
So, we reckon that sprucing up a website to keep it fresh and alive is the best way a website owner, or a webmaster, has of boosting their platform.
And, the changes do not have to be radical, but an enhancement of what already exists. Think of how many products are refined over much iteration so that the basic design concept is not lost, but the qualities that made it a success remain.
The key is to plan at least two minor facelifts a year; it’s a great use of the marketing budget.
Biljana Dimovska, Cayenne Red.
Biljana Dimovska is a member of the digital marketing team at PPC Agency Cayenne Red. She is a regular contributor to the media on how companies market themselves in the digital age.