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Your water authority’s website is the most crucial tool in your marketing/communication plan when it comes to serving your customers. It offers you the ability to deliver comprehensive information, thoroughly communicate with visitors, and provide a convenient way for customers to interact with your team and your authority.

However, a website is only effective if it is well-maintained and updated regularly. If a website is like a Swiss army knife, an outdated website is like a knife with all the blades dulled and half the attachments broken or missing. An outdated site is difficult to use and can even be seen as useless if it’s not functional for the visitor.

If your site is outdated and more of a headache than a help for your water authority’s customers, it’s time to consider a website redesign.

Take a look at these five signs that point to the need for a new website for your water authority:

1. Your Water Authority Website Is Not Mobile-Friendly

Upset asian businessman working in office, reading bad news on phone, man depressed at work

These days, mobile-friendly web design is more than a suggestion—it is a necessity for effectively serving and satisfying your customers.

Just think of all the sites you’ve visited on your phone, where the design is clearly built for a desktop only. Navigating them on your phone is nearly impossible. If you are able to navigate them, you probably run into obstacle after obstacle in the process of retrieving information or completing a specific task.

Many who encounter a non-mobile-friendly website (otherwise known as an unresponsive website) will leave the site and try to find a better-designed option.

Your authority’s site is unique in that there are no other websites to go to if a user gets frustrated with your design. They are stuck with whatever you have to offer them.

While you may not see the value in making a friendlier site to use on mobile, your customers sure do. Smartphones make it easy to log on and pay a quick bill, search for information, or complete any other type of task on your site since they are right there in your customers’ pockets. When they are forced to struggle to complete whatever task they need to on your site, they grow more and more frustrated with more than your website but also with your water authority. In some cases, the only option your customers have is to call your office or visit in person, which eats away at their time and your staff’s time.

Prioritizing the mobile design of your new website will ease your customers’ experiences on your site and with your authority as a whole.

2. Your Water Authority Website Is Visually Outdated

Does your website look like it was designed in 2008, 2014, or even 2018? Website designs continue to improve, transform, and evolve, and people’s expectations for what a website should look like also evolve.

User experience (UX) has completely transformed expectations online today. UX represents a website’s overall function, accessibility, simplicity, and navigability, and it is all executed through the site’s user interface (UI). UI includes toggles, buttons, icons, animations, and everything else your design features to establish your website’s look and navigability.

While some websites used to get away with an outdated user interface (UI) and a less-than-thoughtful UX, there is a clear expectation for how both of those elements of a website should be now, and that expectation is simple and intuitive.

However, if your website is stuck in the past with outdated visuals or design elements, it will only frustrate visitors further and establish an understanding that your authority does not value the user experience.

With a redesign of your old site or an entirely new website, you can significantly improve your UX and UI to not only impress site visitors but also serve them simply and intuitively.

3. Your Water Authority Website Is Lacking Important Features

Angry man talking on phone disputing over computer laptop problem, stressed unsatisfied impatient customer arguing by mobile solving online difficulty with technical support complain on bad service

Do you offer a way for customers to establish or manage their account and pay bills online? Does your website include a place to house valuable news and updates? Can candidates interested in working for your authority apply online or view active job posts? Do you provide a FAQ section where users can quickly look for answers to questions they have about your authority? Do you have a calendar feature to show upcoming board meetings, events your water authority is hosting or involved in, and other date-specific info?

There are plenty of website features that can serve your customers while they are on your site. And chances are, your website has at least some that benefit your customers. But if you haven’t updated your water authority’s site in a while, you’re likely missing out on certain features that could push your UX further and satisfy the users who visit your website.

A new website design gives you the chance to ensure that all potentially beneficial features are considered and incorporated, so that your users can get the most out of their time on your site.

4. Your Water Authority Website Has Old or Irrelevant Content

Has this ever happened to you? You visit a website, read the info on it, and ask someone at the company or organization about what you read, only to find out that the information is no longer accurate or relevant. It’s frustrating when a company displays old and incorrect information on its site and never updates it.

Up-to-date content is a crucial part of having a quality website. If you wrote your site several years ago and have not audited it recently to ensure all the content presented is still relevant and accurate, you could be feeding incorrect information to your visitors who have no idea that what they’re reading is, in fact, old and outdated.

Updating your website should include rewriting or at least auditing your content so that you can catch the old stuff and revise it with the most up-to-date and relevant information.

5. Your Water Authority Website Has a Slow Load Time

Young frustrated business woman office worker trying to concentrate for her work while she sitting in the company office with old laptop computer and slow internet connection.

In today’s digital landscape, slow load times can mean less web traffic and more displeased customers. A slow load time is a huge indicator of an outdated website, and it can significantly hurt your reputation among your customers. As mentioned in our point about unresponsive and non-mobile friendly sites, your customers cannot just bounce away from your site and look for a water authority website that loads faster—they’re stuck with yours. And if yours takes forever to load (“forever” being three seconds or more), it can be a frustrating torture for the person who just wants to find some info or simply pay their bill.

Here are some telling facts about slow load times for a website:

  • Most users give a site 3 seconds to load before they become frustrated.
  • Over 30% of users will leave the site by the 4th
  • Over 60% will leave by the 5th

Attention spans are short, and users now expect fast page loads so that they can find what they need, accomplish what they want, and get on with their day. Any interruption to that mission will cause customers to form a negative opinion of your water authority and not want to use your site the next time they might need to, thus rendering a major point of your website obsolete.

There are numerous reasons your site may be loading slowly, from high code density to too-large image files, too many elements on a page, and so many other factors. Undertaking a website redesign or launching a new website can address many of the issues so that your site can start loading quickly for your users.

If It’s Time to Rethink Your Water Authority’s Website, Then It’s Time to Partner With M&R Marketing: 478-621-4491

M&R is a full-service, in-house marketing company with expert copywriters, web designers, and web developers. We have provided web redesigns for companies and organizations across the US, including water authorities, and we would love to talk to you about your website needs and how you can improve your customer’s experience on your site.

Get started by contacting one of our business development managers today!

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Is Your Website Mobile-Friendly? Why Mobile Web Design Is Crucial