An Out of Date Website Is a Sign of an Out of Date Brand

Apr 30, 2015 | Brand Differentiation

An out of date website is one of the first telltale signs it’s time for a rebrand.

Your website is a very visual component of your brand, and often your customers’ first impression of your business. It’s where you tell your company’s story, how you portray your products and services, and how you differentiate your business from the competition.

When your website is out of date, it’s obvious for all to see. You can see it in the design. You can see it in the layout. You can see it in the functionality.

But these visual issues are just the tip of the iceberg. An out of date website can signal it’s time to polish your brand.

A Brand Has a Shelf Life

Every brand has a shelf life. Typically a brand needs a tune up every three to seven years, depending on the industry.

For example, the consumer electronics and fashion industries change faster and more frequently than the construction and industrial sectors. Regardless of the industry, we all face the pressure to evolve our brands to remain relevant.

Corporate websites follow a similar timeframe. Corporate websites tend to need an overhaul every two to four years. In the third year the website starts to look dated, and by the fourth year it’s looking dilapidated.

Imagine what a dilapidated website says to customers?

Three Signs Your Website Is Passé

There are three very obvious visual markers that a website is out of date:

  • Fonts are small and hard to read. Screen resolutions have improved dramatically in the past five years. New websites are being designed with 14 to 16 point fonts.
  • Website does not resize for mobile devices and tablets. This one is critical. Not only are you driving away mobile users who cannot read your website, you’re driving away Google. Google’s latest algorithm update, Pigeon, penalizes websites that are not mobile friendly.
  • The images and layout appear dated. Fashion and tastes change, and you can visually spot the layout of a website designed in 2015 versus 2012 versus 2009.

These visual symptoms may initiate the need for a website redesign, but don’t stop there. This is your opportunity to reevaluate your brand and determine if your value proposition and brand strategy is current too.

Go Beyond the Website Project

As you initiate a website project take the time to examine the structural elements of your brand:

  • Positioning: Where does your brand play, and how does it win?
  • Differentiation: How do you present your business in a unique and compelling way?
  • Value Proposition: How does your company deliver value, and how do you portray that in your marketing?
  • Storytelling: How do you share your story and engage your marketplace?
  • Marketing: How does the website integrate into your marketing strategy and move the sales needle?

Your website is a tool. How are you going to use your website to gain the most benefit for your business and brand?

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Jeremy Miller

Top 30 Brand Guru

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