It’s springtime once again. And with that, the rebirth of flowers…and pollen...and bugs. Okay, so spring has its drawbacks, but it is still a time of rebirth.
With that in mind, this may be a good opportunity to bring your insurance website back to life.
We talk about modern website design on a daily basis at ITC. What most people don’t know is how fast modern stops being modern. If your website is from 2014 or earlier, it may be time for an upgrade.
All that said, you never want to slap something together for the sake of progress.
To quote the late, great John Wooden, “Although there is no progress without change, not all change is progress.”
In other words, if we’re going to do this, let’s put some thought into it. Here are 5 things to think about when planning a website upgrade.
1. Make it Visual
Content-heavy designs are no longer en vogue in website design. Today, it’s all about large vibrant imagery. For example, take a look at one of our recent insurance website design.
When you first click on the website link, what do you see? Photos. Personality. A family in their front yard.
Here’s what you want to remember though: The imagery needs to mean something. Sell your products with your imagery.
If you sell auto insurance, show a family enjoying themselves on a road trip. Highlight products you sell. Don’t pick a picture because it’s pretty. Pick it because it’s pretty and it sells your product.
Don’t believe me? Take a look at the images in this article on modern design.
2. Make it Mobile-Friendly
We’ve had many blog articles describing responsive and adaptive websites. What it boils down to is this: You need a mobile page to stay relevant. Several studies show the majority of web traffic takes place on mobile devices. That’s a big deal.
Google has taken note and now looks for mobile relevance when ranking your website.
With a responsive design, you have one website that works across many platforms. An adaptive website requires an extra website for mobile devices and tablets.
Let’s try an exercise.
Open up this template website: http://www.limbaniins.com on your desktop, and then try it on your mobile device. This is a responsive design. What you may have noticed is it’s essentially the same website.
Now, let’s look at someone who has an adaptive mobile website: http://www.holliwayinsurance.com/.
What did you notice? It’s a different look, but still conveys the same feel. Whichever style you like better, make sure you’re staying on top of your mobile presence.
3. Make it Relevant
For content, times have changed. Content is still important for SEO. But visually speaking, less is more these days.
As you redesign your website, take a look at your homepage. Does it seem cluttered to you? If so, can you remove anything? Do you see any redundancies? This will clean up your homepage dramatically.
For a modern design, homepage content should not be more than about two quick paragraphs.
4. Make it Searchable
As I mentioned before, content is one of the keys to SEO. But, don’t forget about the back end of your website. Meta data, content found in the back end, is important for SEO.
If you have an Insurance Website Builder site, you’re in luck. We’ve made it easy for you to add tags, page titles and page descriptions to your website.
Use your upgrade as an opportunity to refresh your Meta data.
It’s like I say to my customers: Having a pretty website is great. Having a pretty website people can find on Google is ideal.
5. Do Away With Novelties
As my colleagues have written about in the past, Flash is going the way of the dodo. Google is already blocking a lot of Flash content. The writing is on the wall. This will only intensify moving forward.
It is for that reason I say this: Get rid of your flash novelties.
The virtual spokesperson was an awesome tool in its day. Now, it’s blocked on Chrome. When it does play, it can be a source of aggravation for website visitors.
Here are some other items you can remove with your upgrade:
1. Visitor Counters
2. Background Music
3. Pop-up advertisements or messages
4. Multi-colored text
Websites, like life-forms and civilizations, are subject to evolution. Your competitors will move forward into the modern era. Don’t get left behind in the technological equal of the Stone Age. Consider these five points as you upgrade your website.
Are you in the market for an upgrade? Have any questions or tips of your own? Tell us in the comments below.