When Should I Update My Website? (Video)

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In today's episode of #AskAnnie, I'm talking about when you should update your website.

This is Episode 8 of my Facebook Live series, #AskAnnie. You can watch the video episode below or read on for the transcript version. Like our Facebook page to catch these broadcasts live!

Hello! Welcome. Are you wondering what is the right time - when should you actually update my website? Today's episode is for you.

Hi, I'm Annie Franceschi, I'm a brand creator, speaker, and upcoming author. I run #AskAnnie. These little short web episodes where I answer your common questions about small business branding. I'm glad you're here today because we're talking about websites.

Most business owners have a website. If you don't have one you probably need to get one and join us all. And everybody's checking out websites these days. But today we're talking about a question I get fairly often which is, when is the right time?

When should I update my website?

As much as I'd like to tell you that it's a year, it's two years, it's six months. There is no silver bullet. There are actually four key criteria that I use to determine whether I should update a website or whether a client should update a website. I'm going to be sharing those criteria with you today.

Four things go into making this decision. I went through this myself for Greatest Story Creative, the business that I have. I update that website about once a year, based on these criteria that I'm going to share with you. But then I have a website for my personal brand, AnnieFranceschi.com - it is brand new and just debuted this week. I hadn't updated this site in about three years. It's really going to depend.

What are those four criteria you want to keep in mind before you go and into the investment of time, resources, money, potentially, into updating your website?


The first criteria of whether you should update your website: are your material facts out of date?

The first is very simple but very important. Material facts.

  • Has anything changed about your business in the past six months or year (however long your website has been around)?
  • Have your services changed?
  • Has your contact information or email address changed?
  • Has the work that you've been doing been changing?
  • Do you want to show different work in your portfolio?

If it's really out of date from a content perspective in terms of the facts of your business, the key business model and what you're doing, we need to update that site soon. You want to keep that in mind.


The second criteria of whether you should update your website: are you reaching your ideal client?

Another consideration and this is really, really important is your ideal client. Some things to consider:

  • If your ideal client were to go to your website today, does it speak to them?
  • Is your message. up-to-date for them?
  • Did you have a different ideal client maybe when you designed your website?

Is your website is actually attracting your ideal clients? If you haven't thought about that, I want you to consider it. You may have a professional looking website that you spent thousands of dollars for, but if it's not attracting your ideal clients or your ideal client has changed, you need to update that website because no one is going to read your mind.

Your website is your online business card.

If it doesn't speak to your ideal clients, we're not doing as much work for you as it could be, right? So we want it working 365 days 24/7 for you and we have to work for our clients. If your ideal client has changed or was built with that in mind, I really want you to consider updating your site.


The third criteria of whether you should update your website: do you have dated design?

Another thing that's very easy to overlook, but something really, really important to invest in these days is dated design. You know, be honest.

  • Does your website look like it was built 10 years ago?
  • Does your website look like it was built five years ago?
  • Does it look and feel and function in a stale way?

I know a lot of people who said they put a lot of money in the website, they just don't want to deal with updating it. They don't put a lot of value in the look. I get it, there's a lot we can invest in as small business owners. But when it comes to your website, it's so important that is up to date. If someone comes to your website and it looks like it was done 10 years ago, they may assume that you're out of business. They may assume that your old fashion and out of date because your website appears that way. That's the tone you're striking whether or not you want that tone is the question.

If your website looks really dated or if it doesn't look good on a mobile phone that's not ideal. Both are important in web design today. You have to keep in mind that your website is not being viewed in isolation. Your business is not being viewed in isolation. We're all on the computer.

We have to consider all those people who have multiple tabs open. They're not just looking at your business or your products or services. They're looking at other peoples'. Other people have made the investment to have a website that looks up today and yours doesn't. If that's the case, you are giving yourself a reason to lose out on that business. I want to make sure you're not doing that. Having dated design is really important. We want to update your site if you're experiencing that in any way.


The fourth criteria of whether you should update your website: does your website make you cringe?

The last, and probably most important, consideration is something that I would call cringe factor.

Cringe factor.

Take a minute and I want you to imagine that a really good friend of yours texts you or calls you up and says, "oh my gosh. I just met the perfect person for your business and I sent them your website." How do you feel? Did you get a knot in your stomach? Did you cringe and how much of a cringe did you have? If you felt great than your website it's probably in a good place. If you cringe and went oh no, someone is sending a great warm lead to my website that I don't want anyone to see, that's clearly a problem.

We want your website to tell a great story about you and the reality is you're not always gonna be able to control when or if people view your website. Your website is again your online business card. It's working for you 365 days 24/7 or it's hurting you for that amount of time.

Is your website helping or hurting you?

Cringe factor is going to tell you from a gut perspective, are you really proud of this?

  • Is it really portraying the business that you are?
  • Is it putting your best foot forward?
  • Is it inviting ideal clients that are relevant to your business now not just relevant to your business a couple of years ago?

You want relevant business. You're not the business you were a few years ago. You're not going to be able to serve folks if these things are out of connection.

I want you to consider these four things. It's not about how much money to spend or that you just want your site to look nice. We can tweak forever. I really encourage you to consider these big, four things before you jump into the investment that getting a new website is.

There are partners who can help you.

Don't feel like you have to do this, all of this on your own. I want to encourage you to do one thing. So if you fit any of these four categories, if you really are feeling like you need to update your website now, I want you to take one action step forward on that idea. Maybe it's if you have the ability to go and update your website, go review is and make sure all the material facts of your business are correct. You can do that for free.

If you don't have the ability to update your website, that's not a great thing as a business owner. That's something I really try to work on with my clients to make sure that they are trained, that they know how to use their website, and their website is on the platform that's easy to update.

You want to keep that in mind and if your website isn't easy to access or update, it may be time to sort of switch partners, switch approaches, and talk to a professional who does this. If you're curious about how to do this, how to do it the right way and to do it in a process that's going to get your message and your story right, before you build it into a website, talk to a professional. You know it's not just sort of glue together what you have, but to really make sure that your foundation is strong, that's something that I do through Greatest Story Creative.

I work with small business owners to help them show their value, tell their story, and grow their business through small business branding. And that includes in many of my clients journeys a website. So if you're curious about this, I actually offer free 20 minute consultations. You can get one above. So check it out. There's a big red button that says free consultation. You can actually book live with me for us to speak on my calendar, so I'd love to speak with you if you want to spend 20 minutes sort of figuring out if you're ready to invest with a professional to really take you to the next level and fix these things about your website. We can take your business into the next chapter.

Thanks for watching. I hope you enjoyed this episode of #AskAnnie. If you're feeling nervous about updating your website, you can do it. Just take me up on that challenge.

Take one step, whether it's you making some updates, sending it to a friend to get their feedback, or taking me up on that free offer to chat with me about your site. So have a great day and thanks so much for watching!