Redo your website, or rebrand your business?

I was recently asked by a business owner if they should consider rebranding or just redo their website?

Well, that depends. No business can afford to rest on its laurels.

You need to ask yourself if your brand, that unique “it” factor your clients and prospects recognize you for, is keeping up with economic and market changes. You also need to determine if your website communicates to your target audience how you’re keeping up, if at all?

If you’re trying to decide if you should rebrand your business, or just update your website. Here are 10 factors to consider helping you make your decision

Five reasons you should just redo your website

Every business needs an effective website. It is the hub of all of your online marketing activities. Without an effective website, you will never see significant results from an online advertising campaign. You are potentially losing money if your website is old, doesn’t communicate your value to potential customers, and isn’t designed well.

1. Your website design is not generating revenue, sales, leads or worse: has a high bounce rate.

If your website receives traffic, but no conversions, this is a problem. Your website could be missing something critical that is turning your website visitors off.

Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors to a website who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page. In other words, people are exiting your website as soon as they enter it.  Your goal should be to have the lowest bounce rate possible. Low bounce rates indicate that visitors find your website to be valuable. Therefore, the lower the bounce rate you have, the more opportunities you have to increase sales.

2. Your website design is outdated or does not make a good first impression

First impressions are everything. You only have 3 seconds to make an impression on a website visitor. If your website does not make a good impression within this time frame, you will likely miss opportunities.

If you have not designed your website since dial-up Internet was the only way to get online or, you have a new website that looks like a website made in those times, then it’s time for a redesign.

Your website is never finished. Make gradual improvements to your website design over the years to keep up with the times. As time progresses, consumer tastes and preferences change. If your website design is outdated and does not make a good impression, prepare for  visitors to click to the next website.

3. You rarely get positive feedback on your website

Maybe you are getting leads and generating sales, but have you ever surveyed your customers to inquire about their experience with your website? If not, you may be missing opportunities to increase your conversion rate or to influence your brand’s perceived value.

One change on your website may increase your sales or your reputation. If you never get positive feedback on your website, ask for it. Survey your customers, or ask a friend, to give you feedback on your website. There may be fundamental design changes you can make to increase your bottom-line.

4. Your website is hard to understand

It makes sense to you, but no one else. You used fancy words or jargon that potential customers don’t understand. The images on the website do not correspond with the message you want to portray. The font types are inconsistent, and the font sizes do not follow best practices. Get the point?

A professionally produced website will get this right, the first time. Avoid spending unnecessary time and energy on a website that you are going to completely overhaul in the future.

5. You are always thinking about changing your website

As soon as you tell someone your website URL, you say “don’t judge it, we’re still working on it.” While you really don’t want people to judge your website, you are not really working on it.

With the right website design, you do not have to be insecure. You will be confident in your website’s ability to effectively communicate your message to your visitors. You will trust your conversion funnel and feel more comfortable with investing in advertising services.

Redoing your website can take your business to the next level.

When considering what your website can do for you, think of it as if it was a store. Your visitors will walk in and make purchasing decisions based on how it looks and speaks to them. If your customers walk in and don’t feel like they are in the right place, they will have a poor experience, and they probably won’t feel compelled to buy from you.

If you have a good handle on your position in the market, know who your audience is and what drives them to make the “buy” decision, but the site isn’t working to land new business then a website redeign is in order. However, if you don’t have  good handle on these things, then it’s time for a deeper dive into rebranding.

Five reasons you should consider a rebrand

Rebranding is a  common business strategy and has been for many years. Most of the time, we don’t notice branding changes as consumers, unless they’re serious makeovers. Most are subtle visual brand transformations – think of color changes to sports team’s logo or uniforms, or packaging design updates. It may seem like changing a logo, or the font of your company’s name on business cards might not be a huge deal, but rebranding a company’s identity can be a significant public declaration of intent, a marker of your company’s commitment to evolution and upward growth.

Other times, however, rebranding can represent a more substantial effort, perhaps to shift the consumers’ perception of a brand or to show a company’s progression with an evolving market. This is where your company needs to look at its brand positioning and messaging, before doing any visual or design development. If this is the case, then It may be time for your company to consider a rebrand.

1. Your business model or strategy has changed

Sometimes the strategic objectives on which a company is founded are not its same goals five years down the road. Whether it’s unforeseen market opportunities or changes in technology, business models change. And when your business changes, so must your brand. The way your company is perceived by those it serves (i.e., your brand) should always align with the way it operates behind the scenes.

2. You’re struggling to raise your prices

If the market price for your products or services seems hopelessly fixed, despite the rising costs of materials, there may be something you can do about it. Because brands ultimately boil down to customer perception, the value of your offerings is entrenched in the minds of those you serve. By rebranding, you’re able to reshape the way your customers perceive you and raise the asking price of your services accordingly.

3. You’re trying to connect with a new audience

Today its millennials. Tomorrow it’ll be the iGen (AKA Generation Z). However silly the moniker, there’s always another generation hot on the heels of those who are spending money in the current marketplace. A rebrand allows you to reposition yourself with the goal of reaching these new and untapped audiences. Staying on top of demographic shifts is good business. The last thing a savvy young demographic wants, after all, is to associate itself with the stodgy brands of their parents’ generation.

4. You’re not attracting top talent

The best talent wants to work for the best brands. It’s as simple as that. If you’re having trouble recruiting the caliber of employees that are necessary for the advancement of your business, it might be because your brand is associated with subpar industry standards. A rebrand allows you to redefine yourself, not just for your customers, but for your current and future employees as well.

5. You’re embarrassed to hand out your business card or website address

Do you cringe when you reach for your card or feel like your website should come with a disclaimer about needing to be updated? Outdated, stale, boring, unoriginal—if your corporate identity or online presence falls under one or more of these descriptors, it’s time for a rebrand.

Rebranding can catapult your business to new heights of success.

Whether they’re plain as day or hiding in plain sight, signs that it’s time to rebrand can be just about anywhere. Often the first sign is that you’re wondering if a rebrand is necessary! Whatever eventually compels you to reach out to a branding firm, you can rest assured you’re making the right decision. With the number of measurable benefits that come with rebranding, the investment is likely to pay off many times over.

So you have some decisions to make; just redo your website or go all-in and rebrand your company top to bottom with fresh design, as well as positioning and messaging too.