Are you embarrassed by your website?

By: Sharon Tanton

Date: 15 January 2014

Are you embarrassed by your website?/vintage typewriter{{}}The business case for having a good website packed with valuable content is very strong. Many people now realise that 60% of a sale happens before clients get in touch (or don’t — as the case may be). Your website plays an increasingly important part in the path to new business.

But it’s often sheer embarrassment that finally flicks the switch between “we really must get round to doing something about our website” to “we need to do it NOW”.

Worse than driving away potential leads (who we’ll never meet and can therefore ignore), a poor website makes it difficult to look our best amongst people we respect and want to do business with.

Having an embarrassing website is like having a really messy house. You just don’t want to bring people back there. Ring any bells?

Here are six signs that you’re embarrassed by your website:

  1. Like the spooky house on the corner, no one’s touched your website in years. It’s creaking at the seams. You daren’t even look in some places. It feels like it’s covered in cobwebs. If you dig too deep a skeleton will fall out of a cupboard or a bat will fly in your face.
  2. It’s like a ghost ship. Your website is haunted by the ghosts of people who left the company months ago, and the spectre of ideas you’ve moved on from. You’d change it if you could, only changing anything is so difficult, so you just avoid sending people to it.
  3. There’s no room at the inn. Look, you’d like to add some new content, but where’s it going to go? Your website isn’t a house, it’s a tiny caravan, and there’s no space for anything else. It’s just not up to the job.
  4. You’ve lost the plot. There are so many words but no one understands what you’re saying. Your website just doesn’t make it clear what you do. (In fact, you’re so mired in the wrong words that you’re finding it hard to explain it too).
  5. Your website looks like it was decorated by Laurence Llewelyn Bowen c.1993. Web fashions change. If too much frippery detracts from your message or the design gets in the way it just feels wrong. If your website fees like a rag rolling disaster, or a gold spray painted cherub fiasco, you’ll want people to stay well away.
  6. It has childhood bedroom syndrome. Your business is growing. You’ve changed. You’re clear what you offer, and how you help your clients but your website hasn’t caught up. Taking people back to the website is like trying to have a serious business conversation in a room decorated in Noddy wallpaper. You’ll do anything to avoid it.

If this sounds like your website, then it’s time to take action.

Sharon Tanton is an expert contributor to Marketing Donut, creative director at Valuable Content and co-author, with Sonja Jefferson, of Valuable Content Marketing.