Have you ever gone online shopping for a web designer and come across websites that have made you say, “Wow, why would you advertise your own skills in such a poor fashion?”
Why would a web designer show their incompetence by having such a poorly designed website? Why are there so many poorly designed websites these days when things like WordPress, Magento and My Yola make the design process so smooth?
The reason is that there’s a certain psychological trick that blinds us to when we need a website redesign.
Understand Why You Can’t See the Flaws in Your Own Website
There are many names for the psychological trick our minds play where we cannot see that what we create isn’t any good. One of the most popular names came from the Simpson’s episode called “The Book Job” (s23e06) where they called it “Pride of Authorship.”
In psychological and evolutionary terms, it’s a process of attachment we feel to the things we create. The more emotionally invested we are in what we create, the harder it is for us to see its flaws. That is why some web designers can dispassionately create beautiful websites for other people, but cannot see how terrible their own website is.
Pride of creation is why some parents can have the brattiest kids, and yet they call them little angels. It is why you hate reading other people’s screenplays, even when they think it is going to be the next Pulp Fiction.
This Pride of Authorship attachment is why you cannot tell that your website needs a redesign, so here are a few indicators to help you.
Technology Is Forcing Your Hand
Harking back to the time when responsive websites were becoming a thing, can you imagine how difficult it is these days for websites that are not responsive? Sometimes, a redesign is required because technology demands it.
Your Competitors Just Did a Website Redesign
If the people walking the street are dressed in rain jackets, it is wise to bring one along with you. If your competitors are redesigning, then there is probably a good reason.
Some Features Simply Don’t Fit with Modern Devices
It’s up to you to check your website for bugs routinely. During these checks, you may find that some page elements no longer work or fit. For example, people who use button widgets may now find that buttons are too small. A redesign, even for the sake of making buttons bigger, is therefore needed.
Loading Times Are Slowing
There are plenty of reasons successful websites suffer from loading-times issues so you should probably do a redesign while trying to hunt down the problem. Hunting down the reason for your loading times issues requires lots of work anyway, so you may as well get something out of it at the end.
Bounce Rates Are Climbing
Most website design tips will tell you that a poorly-constructed website will receive high bounce rates. A high bounce rate means you need a redesign. If your bounce rate is usually consistent and then starts to slowly climb, this may indicate that your website’s design is growing stale and needs changing.
Navigation Is Failing
Maybe your website layout is the reason your website needs a redesign. The old design may have worked well in the early days, but now that you have more content, you may need to change things up rather severely to correctly serve your viewers.
Your Brand Has Changed
It is infuriating to see re-branding campaigns that only add superficial changes to websites. An example is when Pepsi decided it should target teens, but its website still looked like a site for a corporate retreat. If your brand has changed, then it needs to be echoed by your website.
Your Services Have Changed
If your website works and draws in customers, then it may be difficult to justify a redesign. However, if your service is changing, especially if you are scaling up, then your website needs to change too. It is hard to see at first, but if your service is changing and your website is not, then your website is holding you back.
Adding New Functions
Take the example of fast food outlets that offered online ordering but refused to pay to upgrade their own websites. Instead, they used services like Hungry House and Just Eat. Nobody is saying the takeaways were wrong to use those services, but they were missing out on extra customers by refusing to add new online ordering functionalities to their own websites.
Mobile Devices and Your Pride
People who have used My Yola, WordPress, Magento, or similar CMS programs may know the heartache that mobile devices cause. What happens is that you create a perfect desktop website that fills you with pride. Then, you look at it through a mobile view and it is laid out like a scrapheap mess. The responsive function is working, but the page simply doesn’t look that good.
In this case, you need a professional re-designer to make the mobile version look as good as the desktop version, or you need to bite your lip and do your own redesign where you bounce between desktop and mobile views to be sure you craft equally beautiful websites for both.
Conclusion – Start the Rule of Seven Redesign
If you are using a website design company, then let them present you with ideas and you pick the best one. They can create dispassionately, and emotion will not sway you when you make your decisions.
If you are doing your own website redesign, then start with the rule of seven. This is where you must redesign a full seven times before you settle. This means redesigning your website, looking at it, improving it, and redesigning it, and then doing all that again at least seven times.
Some may mistake this for overproduction, but a normal design process will usually see seven or more redesigns before a project is deemed complete. All you are doing is telling yourself you are going to do seven redesigns. It makes you unable to grow attached to your designs, and it will probably result in a far superior website design.
Want top tips on website design and on picking website designers? Then you need to check out other YZ DESIGNS blog posts that cover everything from keeping your WordPress website updated to creating a perfect logo.