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9 signs it's time to update your website and how to fix it

Jennifer Lonoff Schiff | July 23, 2014
Ecommerce, Web analytics and design experts share their tips on how to tell if you Web or ecommerce site needs tweaking (or major fixing) and how you can improve it inexpensively.

Problem No. 4: It's Difficult to Add Content or Update Your Site — Without Having to Pay Someone a Lot of Money to Do it for You. If you cannot easily update your site, you may want to consider putting in a content management system. Just "pick a theme and try to keep complex functionality low," says Eugene Revzin, director, Design & Development, Perfect Search Media.

"Content management systems with easy-to-use interfaces allow the client to update their site on their own without having a lot of coding knowledge," Revzin says. "The right theme can be a great starting point regarding design and functionality. Keeping your site simple with only the necessary functionality will also save you a lot of money and will usually provide a better user experience."

Problem No. 5: Your Website Isn't Mobile Friendly. "Check your Google Analytics (or weblogs) and see how much of your traffic is coming from a phone or tablet," says Rick Wilson, president, Miva Merchant, an ecommerce solution provider. "If it's more than a few percent, you need to ensure your site is usable on both phones and tablets. Upgrading your site, either to a responsive or adaptive design, or with a mobile specific design, can generally be done affordably," and allows you to reach customers wherever, or however, they shop.

Problem No. 6: No Way to Opt In/Sign Up to Receive News or Promotions. "Do you have a way to capture every lead coming to your site? You should have an opt-in on the upper fold of your website in order to capture visitors' emails if they want to stay in touch with you," says Lizz M. Smoak, an online business coach.

"In today's noisy online world, visitors may have stumbled upon your website and [may] not be able to get there again on their own," Smoak says. "Allowing them a spot to enter their email, to receive some valuable content from you, helps lead them back to your site again," and it increases your chances of making a future sale.

Problem No. 7: Stale Content. "Your site might not be doing too well on products that you have carried for a long time and have not refreshed the content [i.e., product descriptions] for in a long time," says Smita Kumar, assistant manager, Ugam, an analytics provider. If that is the case, "you will need to refresh this content as Google ranks refreshed content [higher]." If you are not a writer, and don't want to pay a lot for a professional copywriter, "you can fix this quickly and without spending too much by rephrasing content and including relevant keywords that perform better on organic search results."


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