How do you know it's time to invest in manufacturing website design? Well, it depends on how you look at your website. To spark change, you need to look at your site without the rose-tinted specs.
You may face a little opposition from conservative corporates who have to think before giving the green light for new investments and are unaware of the reasons to redesign your website. If you think you do need a new website, you need to give reasons why.
Here are 12 reasons you need a new website that will help you convince the board to invest:
1. Your website is too hard to find
What's happening when you try to Google your company or your products/services? If your company's key services or products are nowhere to be seen, you may have problems with your website.
What are the reasons your website isn't appearing in search engines? The most common factors include slow website speed, lack of mobile-friendly features, overuse of Flash, poor keyword choice or optimisation, or bad site structure.
Try opening an incognito tab (doesn't track browser history or cookies) and type in a keyword that's synonymous with what you offer. For example, if you're a food manufacturer, you could type in 'food manufacturers near me' to check if you appear in Google's map recommendations.
Note: while it isn't great that your website doesn't appear in search engines, it doesn't always mean you have to redesign your site. Have a professional web designer or SEO specialist look at it for a diagnosis.
2. Your website looks good, but it doesn't perform
How is your website performing? Is it there for show? Or do you want to attract visitors, nurture them as leads and turn them into customers? Because that's what a proper website does!
The manufacturing industry is changing and so are your potential customers. Their interests and expectations change. You lose track. As a result, you struggle to feed your sales staff with high-grade leads, who don't turn into customers. Perhaps you need to adapt too. A website redesign can be an excellent way to reevaluate performance and set new goals for visitor attraction, lead generation and customer conversions.
There are many reasons a website maintains an excellent conversion rate which falls under design, user experience and marketing. Take a look at this example from UK technology manufacturer Dyson, what action do you think they want you to take?
3. Your website isn't mobile friendly
Your website HAS to be mobile friendly. No negotiation! Up to half of the world's web traffic comes from mobile devices, so if your website isn't optimised for mobile, you're almost certainly missing out.
Give it a try. Type your website into Google and bring it up. Do you want to stay on it? Does it look welcoming? Feel easy to use? If it doesn't tick the boxes, you need to consider a redesign.
Do remember to check where your traffic comes from, if 90% of traffic comes from desktop users, that's where your focus should be.
Want to learn more about manufacturing marketing? Read our Ultimate Guide!
4. Your bounce rate is sky high
Is your website bounce rate high? Your visitors get to your website, but they don't stick around for long. Why? You've failed to give them a reason to stay and keep coming back.
Here's a simple fact worth remembering. It's much more expensive to attract new visitors than it is to keep your existing ones. Therefore, investing in a website redesign and developing a content strategy is the best thing you can do to keep your old visitors interested and engaged.
5. You neglect the commerce side of your business
If you're a manufacturing company with a product base, you need to ensure your website is equipped to sell products. If it isn't, you'll miss out on a lot of business.
You could consider features like a chatbot, or using artificial intelligence and smart devices (Amazon Echo) to sell products. Manufacturers should also consider adopting a D2C selling method, and think about a new website can support the decision to be more direct.
6. Your website doesn't align with your business, sales or marketing goals
One of the main reasons to redesign your website is to make it align with your marketing and sales activity. All marketing campaigns and social media activities you are to launch, or conduct, include or begin with your website.
You can’t allow yourself the luxury of maintaining a website that doesn’t help you market and sell your product/service. You need a new website to push your marketing efforts in the right direction.
7. Your visitors are finding it difficult to navigate your site
A successful website is all about positive user experience. You need to make sure your visitors can navigate to the right information on your website with ease. We often see manufacturers with dated websites where navigation structures don't reflect how the company has moved forward.
If this is the case, you need to redesign your old website to match your user’s expectations and demands.
People in the manufacturing and engineering industries want technical information, and they want it fast. See how John Deere makes the user journey seamless and offer all the technical information you need in a well-designed online brochure.
8. Your website is visibly outdated
If you want to impress your visitors and turn them into customers, your website needs to be visually stimulating. Outdated design and functionality sends out a negative message about your company. If you can't take care of your website, how are you supposed to take care of your customers? Let your new website be your company's most prominent ambassador.
9. You can't make updates with ease
If you have to make a dozen phone calls and write countless emails to your IT team just to make a simple change, this is a warning sign, your old website needs updating.
Modern manufacturing website design offers improved functionality that allows people (regardless of their IT knowledge) to conduct basic maintenance and regular updates quickly and efficiently.
10. You've got a case of content overload
This usually happens on the homepage of a website and follows the thought pattern of wanting to give your visitors all the information they need. Noble motives, poor execution!
What actually happens when you put too much text, pictures and videos on your site is pure confusion. You don't highlight the most important piece of information, so your user has no point of focus.
It also looks messy and unprofessional, so people are more likely to leave.
11. Your competitors' websites look as if they came from another world
This is an ultimate warning sign that your site has to undergo serious redesign work. Do you want your website to look as if you built it in your free time? After all, your website is one of your most prestigious assets. It's your online ID, and you can’t afford yourself the luxury of staying behind your competitors, can you?
Take a look at these two websites in the freight manufacturing industry. If you had a company in that industry, would you feel comfortable competing with them?
12. Your business is growing
Our business is growing, why would we need a new website? Surely, if you're becoming a bigger business you want your website to represent that?
The temptation here is to wait until you stop generating business or wait until you've generated enough business to start. Wrong! If you wait until the demand is there, you may not be able to cope when it arrives.
Develop the foresight to know when you need to update your website. If you keep bringing in new clients, you might need a better visit to purchase route. This could be various things, but a web design company can help you figure out where you need to improve