I hope I don't step on any toes with this blog post - I mean it only in the gentlest, most respectful way. I know small business owners are really busy and dealing with their website is probably at the bottom of their list of to-dos, but here are some quick website quality checks you can perform to see if you should think about a new website. And luckily if it turns out you do want a new website, we've made it as easy and painless as possible. Already know you need a new website? Sign up for our free trial and give our websites a spin.
1. Your website looks really small on most computers and/or floats into the upper lefthand corner of a web browser. The flip side of this is that your website expands to be as wide as any computer screen, looking really stretched out and weird.
This is a sure sign that your website was built a LONG time ago. And by LONG time we mean five or ten years. Computer monitors used to be a pretty standard size, so old school websites were built specifically for the standard monitor size. If the website is a fixed width (and fixed at a narrow width - less than 800 px) it is dwarfed by modern monitors that far exceed 1200 px. Also, if your website automatically expands to fill the monitor, this looks really silly on large monitors. This wasn't a problem way back when as monitors weren't that big. Nowadays, modern websites should have a set maximum width so they don't infinitely expand to fill big monitors. Currently over 90% of monitors are larger than 1024 px wide, so if your website was built for 800x600 monitors (the standard in 2000) it may look kind of silly on modern monitors.
Contrast this with Bevelsmith websites - they are fixed at 960 px wide, so they don't look small on large monitors, and they also don't expand infinitely.
2. You haven't been able to change any of the content on your website in over a year - for example, your website says Copyright 2010 at the bottom.
Changing content on your website shouldn't be hard, and it shouldn't cost an arm and a leg. If it is so painful for you to change the copyright, update your business address after you've moved, or add current events, then you really need to upgrade.
This isn't a problem with Bevelsmith - we make it a snap to change images, content, logos - everything about your website can be easily customized by you.
3. Your website uses Flash.
This goes beyond Flash not working on the iPhone or iPad. Adobe has stopped supporting Flash for Android, which means sooner or later Flash won't work on ANY mobile device. Beyond that, flash is bad for SEO, since search engines can't understand the images or text in a flash animation, it can slow down the loading of your website, and it's hard to change. If you have Flash on your website, you've probably been stuck with the same banner for several years, since updating Flash requires expensive design resources.
Don't worry - no Flash on Bevelsmith's websites. Our nifty slideshow uses jQuery which works on all browsers and mobile devices.
4. Your website doesn't work on mobile devices/tablets (this is a newer thing, but really important).
Open your website on a smartphone or tablet. Has the website simply shrunk down to fit the screen so it's so tiny it's not readable? Do you have to pinch in and scroll around to actually be able to see every part of the website but still have the text be readable? This means your website isn't 'responsive'. According to recent articles, almost 40% of web traffic is from mobile devices. If your website isn't functional on mobile devices, close to half of your website traffic won't be able to use your website. I suspect the percentage of mobile internet traffic will continue to increase in the future as well.
Example of a website that doesn't work well on a smart phone
We've got you covered here too - Bevelsmith websites are responsive, so they will look great and be highly user-friendly no matter what type of device is being used to view the website.
|Bevelsmith website on an iPhone||Bevelsmith website on a desktop computer|
For example, check out Bevelsmith client Fast Frame Solana Beach - the website responds to the type of device to be functional on different devices
5. Your website burns people's eyeballs.
You know who you are - clashing colors, blinking/scrolling/unreadable text, animated gifs. These were fun about 10 years ago when the internet was still in its Wild West phase, but modern websites are beautiful without giving the website visitors headaches. Here are some particularly illustrative examples (click on the image to go to the website itself - it's the only way to fully appreciate it):
Did you answer yes to any of the above? If your website doesn't pass this simple test, try out Bevelsmith for free. It's an unlimited free trial, and we'll have your test website up and running in less than five minutes. If you like your website, it's only $20/month to upgrade to Pro. So what are you waiting for?