Websites are a bit like cars – they tell the world about who we are, our core values, and what we have to offer.

And no matter how much you loved a car when you first drove it home, there comes a time in everyone’s motoring life when it’s time for something new.  The glossy paint has faded from fire engine to rust bucket red, the engine that used to purr starts with a cough that never ends, and that hot two seater convertible just doesn’t have enough seat belts to accommodate your football team of a family….

So however much you loved it when you first saw it go live, here are 6 signs it’s time to redesign your website:

1. It’s over 5 years old:  Times change fast these days, and website technology is no different.  Website technology improves vastly year on year, leading to increased functionality, better client engagement, and more turnover.  If your website is more than 5 years old, you will be losing out to your competitors. Think of the mobile phone you had 5 years ago.  Most of us couldn’t imagine trying to survive with a phone that old.  They are no longer fit for purpose and can’t perform the way we need them to. Neither can your website.

2. You need to engage more users:  a consistent drop in your analytics is an excellent indication that something needs to change.  If your target market aren’t finding you, aren’t staying long, and are not engaging with your site, you need to make changes, fast.  In addition to your analytics, if users are consistently providing feedback that indicates their experience is less than optimal or they are requesting specific upgrades, you should be listening.

3. You want better content management:  From WordPress to Drupal to Joomla (and everything in between), today’s content management systems are designed to boost performance and improve the user experience.  If you are struggling with your current CMS, it may be time for a change.

4. It Needs to Realign with Your Company Profile: a website is part of your overall marketing strategy and should reflect that. If your marketing strategy has changed, your website should, too.

5. You are sick of looking at it:  if you are tired of looking at your own website, chances are your users are, too. And if you have an ever-growing wish list of things you’d like to do with your next website, it’s likely time to make those dreams a reality.

6. A redesign is cheaper than repairs:  as with cars, for many website owners, this is what it comes down to.  Even the best engineered vehicles eventually need repairs; the same is true of the best websites.  They will develop little bugs and little glitches that overtime multiply.  And while most things are fixable, time and technology wait for no site and eventually the cost of the repairs (or the losses from downtime and crashes) out strips the expense of a new website.

Websites are now a vital part of doing business so getting it right is vital to the health of your balance sheet. Redesigning your website, however, can feel like a daunting task.  But with the right website design team with you, it doesn’t have to be a chore.

And just like the thrill of driving off the lot in a new car, once you have your new website up and running, you really will wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.