How often should I redesign my website?

You should at least consider a redesign every year.

You’re probably thinking, “Every year – are you crazy?” Bear with me – here’s why I say that:

You should try to avoid full redesigns.

At first there’s lots of love, but what happens over time?

After launching your new website, everyone is excited and proud of their work, and the love flows freely.

But over time that wanes.

  1. Design trends change
  2. Competitors update or refresh their websites
  3. Your business evolves a little, and your website just doesn’t quite reflect what you do any more

These things accumulate over time and it gets to the point where you just don’t like your website any more; you don’t even refer people to it. What a waste.

So then you have to through the pain (both financial and emotional) of a full redesign, only to start the cycle again.

Instead, make gradual updates over time.

Don’t let your website slide down the scale too far before acting.

By giving your website a proper review at more frequent intervals – a few things happen:

  1. You extend the lifespan of your current website considerably
  2. Incremental updates and design refreshes are much easier to implement
  3. You reduce the risk of alienating regular visitors with substantial changes all at once (a lot of people don’t like change)
  4. You spread the costs more evenly over the life of your website

Such a review of your website may well reveal that you don’t need to do anything – but it’s important to know that it is the best course rather than just ignoring the issue and hoping it will go away.

Incremental updates effectively give you a new website every few years anyway.

Website usability expert Jakob Nielsen recently published an article in which he reviewed how much home pages tend to change year after year. His sample indicated a change of approximately 40% each year, which means that about every 3 years the site is effectively completely different anyway. Without the same level of pain, and without it getting so bad that it’s not being used.


Some takeaways:

  1. At least every year (better yet every 6 months) sit down and take an objective look at your website. Does the branding and general design still fit your business?
  2. Check your website traffic statistics. Are the popular pages the ones you’d hope for and expect? What do the sources of your traffic tell you about what people are looking for?
  3. Is your website converting as well as you think it should? (Leads, sales, enquiries, downloads… what goals are being measured?)

Of course, if you need a hand deciphering all of this, contact us to arrange a meeting!

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