Should You Do A Website Refresh or Website Redesign?

Your website may well need a refresh or redesign so that your website stays current and doesn’t get left behind by newly refreshed or redesigned websites. In this article, I discuss what a website refresh and website redesign respectively mean and the situations in which a website refresh should be considered and the situations in which a full website redesign is more suitable.

Table of Contents

What does a website refresh mean?

A website refresh is much more subtle than a full website redesign, possibly refreshing the look of the website by changing the colours or fonts used or adding some new interactive features to the website. This keeps the overall functionality of the website the same and leaves the foundations of the website the same, just with a new appearance. A website refresh is commonly also referred to as ‘reskinning a website’.

What does a website refresh mean image

I like to think of this as changing the look of a shop’s storefront on the street while the processes within the shop stay the same.

When should you refresh your website?

A website refresh, for the most part, should take a lot less time than a full website redesign as this only changes some small aspects of the website rather than, in effect, creating a new website with a website redesign. Here are some of the situations where a website refresh would be more suitable than a website redesign:

You want a quick update

You want your website to be refreshed quickly and you want your visitors to see the changes that you have made quickly without having to worry about the changes being made to the website for months to come.

A website refresh costs less than a redesign

You don’t want to or are unable to spend a lot on having a full website redesign and would rather put a smaller budget towards a website refresh. As a full website redesign is a much longer process, this means more time and more money to complete the full redesign which can be a daunting amount when asking for quotes from website designers.

Website refresh to save budget image

Your brand has recently changed

You have recently changed some of your brand’s personality and would like the changes to be reflected in your website. Small changes to your website such as a logo change, fonts or colour changes keeps your website consistent with your other digital marketing platforms, creating one uniform look for your business.

Your website is performing well

Your website is performing well on search engines and you do not see any reason to change what you are doing at the moment. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

You want to add a new small feature

You would like to add a new interactive feature to your website which does not require a full website redesign in order to include it. These interactive features may include a chat bot like below, a review widget or a social media feed integration and you only need to embed the code into the website rather than strip any of the website’s code away.

Website refresh includes chat bot image

Your business' services or products have changed

You would like some of the pages’ of your website titles changed in order to reflect changes in your services and changes in your business. Again, this is a simple process which does not require a full website redesign in order to carry out.

When should you redesign your website?

A full website redesign takes a lot longer than a website refresh and as mentioned earlier, involves recreating most of the website from the foundations up, leaving you with a totally new look and new functions for your website. A website redesign can also just reskin the website in terms of its look and appearance, keeping the functionality of the website the same but creating a new presentation of your brand through the website.

Here are some of the situations where a website redesign would be more suitable than a website refresh:

When should you redesign your website image

You have not redesigned your website for a while

You have not redesigned your website for 3 or more years or have never redesigned your website. Website trends and technology change fast and if your website has not been kept up-to-date so that it is compatible on all browsers and devices, you will be losing potential visitors to your website and potential business.

You want to change your website's platform

You are fed up with the platform that your website was originally built on. A lot of website platforms can cost a lot of money and if you do not know how much a website should cost, you can find yourself paying a lot of money for subscriptions that you really do not need to pay for. By switching to a platform like WordPress, you can save a lot of money by moving away from website subscription platforms such as Wix.

The websites that I build do not come with a fixed subscription fee after the website has been purchased but rather have optional care plans that are available if you would like your website to be maintained and kept up-to-date.

Your website is not mobile friendly

Your website is not optimised for mobile devices. Mobile responsivity is significantly important when it comes to creating a website. Google takes your website’s mobile usability into consideration when ranking your website, meaning that the better optimised your website is for mobile, the better opportunity you have to rank highly on Google’s search engine rankings. 

Website redesign so that it is mobile friendly image

According to Statista, in the first quarter of 2021, mobile devices (excluding tablets) generated 54% of global website traffic, this is even more important when discussing ecommerce websites as 87% of UK consumers make purchases online.

You can read even more reasons why your website needs to be mobile friendly here.

Your website has a slow loading time

Your website has slow loading times. Google’s research showed that the chance of someone bouncing straight away from your website increased by 32% when a page load time went from one to three seconds, and then by 90% when the page load time went from one to five seconds. Just like mobile usability, Google also takes into consideration how fast your website loads when it ranks your website. Your website’s loading times can usually be improved without having to have a full redesign but redesigning parts of your website can also lead to speed improvements. 

You can find out how to improve your website’s loading speed here.

Your website is not performing well

Your website is not performing well and you are not seeing a lot of website traffic. If this is the case, look into if your website is SEO optimised well and see how you can adapt the website functionality and design to improve your website’s performance. 

P.S. I can look into your website’s SEO if you do not know how to, contact me here and let’s take a look!

You would like to add a shop to your website

You would like to add a shop functionality to your website. Adding a shop functionality to most websites does not take a full website redesign but is a longer process than a website refresh. This does depend on the platform that your website is currently on and may require moving your site to a new platform if your current platform does not allow the shop functionality.

You can find out more information about adding a shop to your website here.

Website redesign to add a shop to your website image

Your business has changed completely

You have completely changed your business’ purpose and message. Some service or product changes can be completed in a website refresh but a complete change in your business’ purpose and message will require a website redesign in order to reflect the different design and layout necessary for your new business’ purpose and message.

Things to consider before refreshing or redesigning your website:

As with everything websites, there are things that you should consider before asking a website designer about a website refresh or website redesign. Here are a few which you should consider:

Things to consider before refreshing or redesigning your website image

Website Refresh vs Website Redesign Cost

As mentioned above, a website refresh leaves less of a dent in your wallet or purse than a website redesign does. Most of the time, a website refresh should not take longer than a few hours of work whereas a full website redesign can take weeks or even months depending on the size of your website. 

Having said that, if you feel that your website would benefit more from a full redesign than a small refresh, in the long run, it will cost you more to keep having to refresh the website rather than the one redesign payment. Also, if your website is not performing well, by not remediating the problem, you are losing potential visitors to your website and potential business.

Website Refresh vs Website Redesign Timeframe

As you have already worked out, a website refresh takes a lot less time to complete than a website redesign. If you are too busy to allocate some time to talk to a website designer about a full website redesign, some small refreshes may be suitable until you have enough time to go for the full redesign.

Severe website issues

Before thinking about if your website should have a refresh or redesign, you need to make sure that your website does not have any severe website issues. These may include SSL certificate issues, mixed content or malware within your website. 

Contact me straight away if you have any issues that you are worried about.

Check severe website issues before a website redesign image

Rounding up…

It is commonly said that you should redesign your website every two to three years to ensure that your website stays modern and functioning with the current technology, browsers and devices. By initially building your website with responsive and smart coding foundations on a stable website platform, your website will stay modern and you will come across less website issues in the long run.

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Let’s Refresh or Redesign Your Website!

It can seem like a lot to think about when tackling the idea of refreshing or redesigning your website. That is where I come in. 

I would love to have a chat and see how we can refresh or redesign your website so that you attract more visitors and ultimately, get more customers buying from your business. 

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