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22 Negroni

Is it Time for a Redesign?

 Your website can be a vital factor to the success of your business. If your site isn't up to standard, prospective clients or customers will begin to look elsewhere. You may be unsure if your site is in need of a redesign. Luckily, we brought our Chief Creative Officer Jesse Glade on to discuss 5 signs it's time for a website redesign. Join us as he brings his wealth of knowledge and experience from designing and building many websites.


We're taking a break from all of the weird drinks and bringing in a classic. The Negroni. 's a simple cocktail that's very spirit-forward and refreshing. If you love strong drinks, you'll love this!


  • 1 oz. campari
  • 1 oz. gin
  • 1 oz. sweet red vermouth


Stir into your favorite glass over ice, garnish, and serve. 

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Episode Transcript

Catelin:     Hey, welcome back to another episode of Cocktails, Tangents and Answers. I am Catelin Dre, and I'm here with Rich Mackey.

Rich:          I am here also. Yes, Catelin. Good to see you again.

Catelin:     Hi. How you doing?

Rich:          I'm doing all right. I'm recovering. I got the COVID finally. Took three years, but it got me.

Catelin:     It gotcha.

Rich:          But I'm doing well.

Catelin:     Thank you for being responsible about it. Staying indoors.

Rich:          Of course. I mean, I also felt like absolute crap.

Catelin:     Like, "Twist my arm. Stay in my house for days on end, wear soft pants.

Rich:          Yeah. Oh God, yeah. Jessica asked me early on, like the second day or something, she's like, "How do you feel?" And I just sent her a bus running over somebody GIF. Because I'm like, just the ache and like, "Oh, this is crazy." But that's not what this episode is about. It's just life happens and I'm on the mend, and hopefully will test negative this week and be able to rejoin all of you at some point.

Catelin:     Rejoin pleasant society.

Rich:          The living. Yeah. But I do love my alone time at home. I do a lot of website surfing when I'm home alone, of course. Which ties into our topic. I could give a whole bunch of companies.

Catelin:     Have you found any sites we should just send a contact form. "Hi, we can help you fix this."

Rich:          Yeah, we were actually on our dog daycare one last night, and dog daycares tend to be the worst for some reason. And Brian was looking around and he's like, "Okay, I know they have a place where you can manage your dogs, but why can't I make an appointment?" And it's like, okay, well it's different functionality, but it's not that hard. And he's like, "Also, why is it whenever I go to their website, it takes me 15 minutes to figure out where I click to go manage our dogs and tell them who needs what."

Catelin:     That's really annoying.

Rich:          And I was like-

Catelin:     Do one button, client, client login.

Rich:          I know, and part of me is like, "I should just call them and say, 'Will you give us free doggy daycare for a year and we'll redo your website?'"

Catelin:     It's a business expense.

Rich:          Yeah.

Catelin:     It's a write off.

Rich:          And I guess only us and Zach could take advantage of that right now in Omaha, although, well, you don't have a dog, so you don't care.

Catelin:     No, I don't. I mean, I care. I care because I am an empathetic, deeply caring person, but I don't care in that regard. No.

Rich:          Yeah, you're not out anything by not being able to take a dog to doggy daycare.

Catelin:     Yeah.

Rich:          So yeah, tons of websites. So what are we talking about this week?

Catelin:     Can you tell me about what our cocktail is for the week?

Rich:          I can do that first. Sure. So we're doing a classic, and I don't know if you like this one or not. It's an Negroni, but a classic Negroni. Nothing's fancy, no weird stuff in it. It is just Campari, gin, and sweet red vermouth. One to one to one.

Catelin:     Okay.

Rich:          So equal parts, all three.

Catelin:     Okay.

Rich:          You stir that into a glass, garnish it.

Catelin:     I think this might be a little bit stiff for me. I don't love a spirit forward... I know we've talked about this. I love gin, but I need a little something to mellow it out.

Rich:          Campari is not a starter booze, I guess.

Catelin:     It's a liqueur?

Rich:          Yeah, it's fairly advanced in its taste because it's a little bit bitter. It's hard to describe. But yeah, I looked at this one and I was like, "Well, there is no [inaudible 00:03:37]

Catelin:     Amaro. It's an amaro.

Rich:          An amaro.

Catelin:     Is that it? God. I was like, Tyrell has a whole cart of, I think-

Rich:          Maybe, I don't know.

Catelin:     My home bartender has a whole category of things that get mixed. I think that's the-

Rich:          I know it's an aperitif.

Catelin:     Okay.

Rich:          Oh no, it is a part of the Italian amaro family. I had to look at up.

Catelin:     I was like, "I'm pretty sure it's an amaro."

Rich:          Do you know how you know what an amaro is? Do you know what amaro means?

Catelin:     Nope.

Rich:          Little bitters. So if it's a little bitter, it's an amaro.

Catelin:     Okay, now we know.

Rich:          Yep. But it's also an aperitif, because people sip it. So this one, interestingly enough, we're not using a shaker this time. This is stirred, not shaken.

Catelin:     Stir with a large cube, I'm going to guess, to dilute?

Rich:          Stir into a glass over ice, garnish and serve. I would do the large ball of ice because we have those now. But you could do any ice probably.

Catelin:     Yeah.

Rich:          The nice thing about the large ball is it doesn't really water... It waters down the drink the right amount.

Catelin:     So I was going to say that's the point of the stir is that you want a little of the dilution.

Rich:          But you don't want the ice breaking up in there.

Catelin:     No. Right.

Rich:          And you don't need it super cold either. So yeah. So just a Negroni.

Catelin:     In a coupe? Coupe glass? I'm picturing also with a little orange peel garnish. I feel like that's how they have been presented to me in the past.

Rich:          So Negroni is usually just in a rocks glass, but yes, there is generally an orange peel on it.

Catelin:     Okay. Over a cube of ice?

Rich:          An old fashioned glass. Yes, one. Yep. On the rocks, generally one cube of ice is preferred. I'm just looking up some information on it. But you can do multiple ice cubes if you don't have one giant cube.

Catelin:     One cube.

Rich:          But honestly, you could just go get one of those rubber forms even and just make your own, big square ones are good too. It doesn't have to be round, it can be big and square.

Catelin:     There's a site that you can personalize. You can monogram your ice cubes was one of the gifts that I got for my husband for Christmas, but we don't have a name for our bar, so I just put 'unnamed' as the monogram. You can do either the traditional three letter monogram and that came, because we call it, he has taken to calling it the unnamed lounge. But doing that, it was like UNL and we're not really Husker fans.

Rich:          Oh.

Catelin:     So I was like, "That's dumb." So then they had an option to spell out.

Rich:          But so I was thinking the unnamed lounge. So unnamed is all one word. So TUL.

Catelin:     Oh, TUL. Okay. Maybe in my second order. Yeah, because the lots of letters got really hard to read.

Rich:          Yeah, that can get really difficult on a block of ice, I could see that. All right. So while we're sipping our Negronis, while I am, because I think... So I feel like you could cheat and you could put a little bit of club soda in it or little spritz or something.

Catelin:     I think I would maybe tolerate it too with a stronger dilution, a longer stir maybe would melt it down.

Rich:          So how do you feel about an Aperol Spritz?

Catelin:     I love a Spritz.

Rich:          Okay. Because that's just mostly booze anyway, because it's Aperol and then Prosecco, but then there is usually a little bit of club soda in that as well. Just a little dilution. I feel like you could do that with this if you wanted to, or just go have another drink that's not in a Negroni, because why mess with it?

Catelin:     That's the thing is the options are so endless that I'm not going to drink something I don't love.

Rich:          And there are other Campari cocktails out there that are really interesting. The color of it is so beautiful. I love it in a drink.

Catelin:     They are pretty, they're really pretty. That's why I was remembering the orange garnish, because it's so, it's like pink and orangey. It is like sunsetty.

Rich:          Well, and I didn't realize the easiest way to get that orange peel garnish is just use your potato peeler on an orange.

Catelin:     Yeah.

Rich:          That's all you got to do [inaudible 00:07:35] and it's like, "Oh."

Catelin:     And then you give it a little squeeze and you get-

Rich:          Yep, yep. A little twist in the squeeze and it gets a little-

Catelin:     Rub it around the, yep. Rub it around the edge of the glass. Yeah.

Rich:          Oh. So that's lovely.

Catelin:     Here's to a good gin cocktail.

Rich:          So aside from the Negroni, what's our topic this week? Who are we talking to, what's going on?

Catelin:     We are talking to our chief creative officer, Jesse, about why or when you know it's time for a new website. And he has thoughts, all of which I agree with.

Rich:          Oh yeah, absolutely. I mean, I think if we didn't agree with them, we probably would've talked about it before the episode.

Catelin:     That's true.

Rich:          Like, "Hey, Jesse." But we didn't have to. They were all really good and they're all really obvious. So if you're a business owner or in charge of a website, they're all things that you can look at and have pretty concrete proof that you could take to somebody and be like, "Hey, we need a new website. This isn't working. It's time."

Catelin:     Yeah.

Rich:          It's absolutely time.

Catelin:     I think we should get to it.

Rich:          Yeah, let's get to it.

Catelin:     Hi, we're back. We're trained professionals. We mostly know what we're doing at this point.

Rich:          I think we probably could. I mean, imposter syndrome is a big thing, but I don't think we have that now. I feel like a host.

Catelin:     Yeah. We should get shirts.

Rich:          Yeah, we should. We'll work on that.

Catelin:     Jackets. I don't want a shirt. I don't like T-shirts, I don't wear T-shirts. I want a jacket. I want a monogrammed pink lady jacket that says "Podcast host."

Rich:          All right, Jesse, can you get to work on that since you're our guest today and our chief creative officer?

Jesse:        All right, on it.

Rich:          All right, perfect.

Catelin:     But they have to be matching.

Jesse:        Oh, obviously.

Rich:          Okay.

Catelin:     Perfect.

Rich:          All right. Well, before we go down too much of a tangent, we should jump into our episode today with Jesse, who's here to talk to us about five signs it's time for a website redesign.

Catelin:     We're ready. I'm pumped about this.

Jesse:        Yeah, thanks for having me back on.

Rich:          Yeah, of course. I think as introductions go, I can do them because Catelin, you also do some web stuff and have seen a few things here and there.

Catelin:     Let's not. I'm not requesting a jacket for that, so maybe don't overstate it.

Rich:          So Jesse's our chief creative officer here at Antidote 71, and he leads all things creative, all things digital as creative and digital have sort of just melded together in this brave new world. The reason I call out Catelin on websites is she manages our website projects with an iron fist or a reed cane.

Catelin:     It's firm, but frequent guidance.

Rich:          There we go.

Catelin:     Firm and frequent.

Jesse:        I like that.

Rich:          Yeah, that's good. Firm, but frequent guidance.

Catelin:     With a little extra. That's how I give GPS commands to my husband while we're driving. That's our, it's like firm and frequent. It's not like, "Oh, take the... Maybe it's this one." It's, "No, the next exit, you need to be in the other lane." So it's firm and frequent.

Jesse:        That works on both sides, to us internally too.

Catelin:     Exactly, right? But kind, it's like-

Jesse:        Of course.

Catelin:     Just gently encouraging you to get your shit done. Thank you. Please.

Rich:          Perfect. So on that vein, before a website project becomes a website project, you have to know you need a website project. And so most every company has a website. I don't know anybody who, well, I do know places that don't, but you've got to kind of understand what are those signs when you're like, "Ugh, I probably need to redo this." Right? So Jesse's here to give us five really obvious ones that he's noticed that are really, really great at telling you like, "Hey, it's time. It's time." And you don't need all five of these, really a couple of them.

Catelin:     No. Maybe just one.

Rich:          Sometimes just one. Yes. Especially as I'm looking at the list number four when we get to it, if that one's happening, just redo the site.

Catelin:     It's time.

Rich:          So Jesse, take it away. What's your first, your number one?

Jesse:        I think number one, this one is important, so we put it right up at the top. The analytics are giving you hints. It should be pretty obvious when things like your bounce rates are becoming especially high. Anything like 25 to 40% is considered pretty good. If you're getting up into the kind of sixties and 70% bounce rate, that's pretty alarming and you probably need to change something up. Also, things like how much time are people spending on the page? We've had a good example of a recent client with a website redesign. They did a heat map actually of their page before and after, and the number of people that were making it all the way down the homepage, all the way to the footer, I think it was a 50 or 60% increase in users making it all the way through the page. So things like that. And then also probably the most important is low conversions and less traffic.

Catelin:     I wanted to go back to the heat map time on page because that was a pretty quick and dirty redesign. That was a speedy project. We shuffled some things and were compensated appropriately for the time that we put into that, but it was a relatively quick turnaround, and I don't want to say it wasn't a heavy lift, but it was not unbearable and or unreasonable in the amount of work and effort that it took on both sides. The client rewrote that site, but was pretty efficient at it. And so I think sometimes people think about websites and they're like, "Well, this is going to be a bear and I'm going to have to put in a ton of time and effort." And that's not always the case when you're doing it efficiently and working with a partner that knows what they're doing and can firmly and frequently guide you through the process.

Rich:          Well, and I think our website's a good example as well. When we decided to shift it from WordPress over to into the HubSpot CMS I was like, "Now, I want to do it now, now." And Jesse's like, "We've got a homepage." I'm like, "Great. Put up the homepage."

Catelin:     Put it up.

Rich:          Do it. Basically take all of the buttons that would lead off to other pages and get us a page that tells people enough about us to be like, "Hey, I like these people." And to contact us. And I think that's where we did it a little bit with the site that we were referencing earlier with the heat map and definitely with our site, you're getting into that growth driven design, which is a whole nother episode, but you don't have to necessarily do the whole thing. You'd have to boil the ocean. You can get started on something and solve an immediate problem very quickly and then move on from there. That heat map one though, I was just shocked. I remember being the one, I looked at it and was like, "Well, people are going to the bottom of your page now." And he's like, "What?" I'm like, "Yeah." And if you look at the before, he's like, "God, nobody was making it past halfway." And it's like, well-

Jesse:        It was crazy.

Catelin:     I remember the email that I sent back. I was like, "That's amazing!" So many exclamation points. I was really excited because that client specifically is really analytics results motivated, and so it was really a great payoff for us to see that the work we were doing was working.

Rich:          And it was a really good example of the problem was so clearly identified and there were multiple problems, that one, we actually didn't even, we knew, but we didn't necessarily solve for it. But solving for having information and giving it a flow and really looking at that design flow of the homepage in particular, it was just an instant fix and it was so fantastic.

Jesse:        I think that falls along the lines of, it's one of those secondary kind of benefits. If you design a site and give the users what they're looking for in all the right spots, things like that are just going to happen pretty naturally. So that was a really good kind of point proven on the analytics of that site.

Catelin:     Yeah. It's a good segue, I was going to say, into number two too. I think that-

Jesse:        Yeah, it ties in really closely. So number two is you're not ranking in search anymore, or maybe you're losing places. So I think it's about 95% of people who perform Google searches don't actually click past the first page. So staying on that first page is very important. Things like URL structure and content, relevant keywords on all those pages are all things that we look at when we're redesigning a site. So that can really bump you up just from a redesign.

Catelin:     Yeah, I am certainly in that 95% of people, if I scroll past the fifth result, I would be shocked in terms of search results. So optimizing towards that is tantamount to a successful site, and some of that comes in the build, and then some of that too can be secondary or a fast follow as far as additional optimizations too.

Rich:          Well, and I think it's a good sign if you were ranking well when your site was previously redesigned or whatever, and you've started to slip significantly. You did a set it and forget it. You put your site up and you haven't taken care of it. And much like the plant in the corner, if you don't do anything, it's going to die. And that's one of those things where websites are a living, breathing extension of your business and much a retail store would never put out product and then wait three years to put out any new product and just leave everything together. It's ludicrous. You laugh because people are expecting new things. Well, they expect new things when they come to your website too, and Google expects new things and freshness of content is a big deal.

Catelin:     Are blog posts enough, in terms of new content?

Rich:          Not really. They help, they give you something, especially if you're doing them frequently, and if you've got them appropriately dynamic on... Not every page of your website, but appropriate pages. If we have a topic of website redesign, if at the bottom of that we're pulling in and filtering blog posts for website redesign, that's going to help quite a bit. Now, if we only do a website redesign blog post once every three months, we're not recent enough, and that page isn't going to have enough recency. So you've really got to look at your categories and how they're pulling in. And that gets to a whole bigger content strategy, which is, that's a Zack question later on. We're just cranking out new topics for podcasts left and right today. So I think the other one that comes up along with this is people are like, "Well, if I redesign my site, I'm going to lose my search ranking."

                  And part of the answer to that is, well, you already are. So there's that. If you do nothing, you're going to keep getting what you're getting and you're going to continue to slide. But if you do it right, or if we do it right, and we do, you'll generally lose about 10% to start with. But you'll bounce back very quickly, less than 30 days generally, and be higher than you were before if everything is done right. But you generally won't lose more than 10% of your rank, and it's only a temporary dip, and you'll come back stronger in the end. So you just have to suck it up and take that tiny little hit for 90 days. We didn't lose anything with our site, but we also learned that the homepage was one of the only things that was really ranking for anything, so there was very little risk. So it's another thing if no pages are ranking in search and it's just your homepage, redesign the homepage like we did, and do a growth driven design and start adding on to it thoughtfully to get those pages to rank. Sorry, a little rant there.

Catelin:     It's fascinating. Yeah.

Rich:          All right. Ready for number three? Yeah, I think so. All right.

Jesse:        I like this one because this hits home for us I think a lot and kind of where we were at, it's, you're ready to grow. As a business making changes, you're maybe being a little bit more aggressive in your market. Maybe your brand is growing up and you're kind of just making some changes that just kind of establish yourself a little bit more. You're just ready to grow.

Rich:          I like this one because it's a positive. The others are all negatives. Something's broken, you screwed up something, you're ugly.

Jesse:        I like to sprinkle in a little positivity right in the middle of our list.

Rich:          And it's not broken.

Catelin:     It's only downhill from here.

Jesse:        Right? Well, yeah. I try to pick them up a little bit before we put them down on the last couple.

Rich:          I mean, and this one, it's not broken necessarily, it's working okay and it's fine, but it's moved beyond the website and who you are and what you're doing. And you don't have to burn it to the ground. It's sort of like a house. You've got a really great house, you might remodel the existing house or remodel part of it and add on to it so you don't have to burn the house to the ground and rebuild from the foundation back up. Sometimes you do, if it's completely infested with malware and other problems, you might need to start over. But with this one, it's really that, how can we improve in starting from a strong point and getting stronger and moving up in the world, which is really good.

Catelin:     I was really struggling to understand how you're getting malware in your house. It took me a second to figure out that you had switched the analogy back.

Rich:          Oh, I came back to the website.

Catelin:     I was like, "I don't... I've done a lot of home projects that that's not landing for me." I think the other thing that is speaking to me about our site specifically is the attracting talent. Hiring right now is such the Wild West, and it feels like you have to do anything physically possible to attract and retain talent. And the website in this instance seems like a pretty easy lift to convince people that you, you're a fun place to work or you're a professional, or whatever kind of message you're trying to sell.

Rich:          And thinking about, yeah, because you are selling and they are your buyer in that instance. And so upping that curb appeal for a potential employee. If you look at your website, so I think that's the other thing that goes along with this, if you look at it and you're like, "Oh, we're missing this entire category of content." That's a great place where you're like, a great addition to this, a great remodel, a re-skin, changing up where content's located and what content's doing for you.

Catelin:     Those puppies are getting-

Rich:          I know. [inaudible 00:22:58] I know, I've got a dog who just wants to play tug and fetch right now. And so if you hear thuds, it's probably him just hitting a wall when he's trying to fetch a toy. But yeah, so that's another positive is like, "Oh, we've got the opportunity to add this new content or to reach this new audience." It could be a new customer audience, but talent became an audience post COVID for everybody. We really need to hit them. That's a great one. I also like Jesse, the your brand is growing up. So can you talk a little bit more about when brands grow up, what they need to do?

Jesse:        Yeah. I think we've run into this with a few clients, maybe they haven't updated in a while. And this goes beyond websites too, it could just be your brand as a whole, that it just starts to feel stale, feels like you've moved past that point and you're kind of onto bigger and better things. And you need to show that with your logo, with your website, and just the brand as a whole. And it really makes a huge difference. It can change people's perception when they first see it almost immediately.

Rich:          So this one reminds me of the law firm that we did. This is a year ago, two years ago now.

Catelin:     Year and a halfish.

Rich:          Where family law, which is always divorce and custody and all these negative things. And they came in because they wanted their brand to be a warm hug, and they wanted their website to be a warm hug. They wanted to be the caring side of family law that really thinks about the humans in it. And that was probably the best brief I think you ever got. And they could have stopped with, we want our website to be a warm hug for visitors coming in, going through this painful time. Okay, I don't need any more info. Let's go. That's great.

Jesse:        Well, and if you looked at their website before, it looked like every other law firm's website, it was stuffy, for lack of a better term, but it was very analytical and to the point. There wasn't a whole lot of personality to that. And I think we did a good job of flipping that around and really getting into that brief of making you feel welcome and they're there to help.

Rich:          And I think that when they came to us, they said, "So the previous site was built by a firm that just does lawyer websites." And well, "Okay, so you're going to get a lawyer website, because they just do lawyer websites." And that was one of the reasons they stepped out and were like, "We want to look at something different, because we want something different." And that's still one of my favorite websites to this day. I love-

Catelin:     It's beautiful.

Jesse:        I like it a lot.

Rich:          I had to go pull a screenshot for a pitch we're doing, and I was like, "Oh, I love this." Growing up brands. Sigh. Take a moment. All right. Back to the negative.

Jesse:        This is probably the number one thing that we see when people come to us is that it keeps breaking. That could be the back end. It could be an outdated cms, it could be on the front end, but things just keep breaking, and that is difficult for the person managing it definitely. But also for a customer or something, if they see something that's not working, it's supposed to, that leaves a bad taste in their mouth, or maybe they can't do something that they want to and they bounce out of the site. So it's a big one. It's one of the reasons why we've kind of started moving away from platforms like WordPress, those plugins and elements, they do break, they get outdated, and it just happens.

Rich:          Yeah, I think it's also-

Catelin:     Yeah, it's frustrating in terms of backend maintenance, but what I also notice is that we have a lot of people that struggle with institutional knowledge where it's like, "Sally was the one who built this site and knew all of the maintenance, and Sally retired five years ago, and we don't know how to update X, Y, Z, and can you help us?" And so then we come in and try and cobble together whatever Sally was doing five years ago, and it's frustrating for everybody, and we can't figure it out. It takes time and money on the client side because it takes us longer to figure out what the issue is, and then we're patching all of this stuff together when really you could solve all of that and get a better functioning, potentially better looking site depending on your investment that solves for all of those problems.

Rich:          Yeah, I think I've run into this a few times. If you've got more than 30 plug-ins on your WordPress site, first of all-

Catelin:     Oh good Lord.

Rich:          ... things are going to break left and right. Oh, you don't know how common it is. You're going to have problems, and it's probably time for you to rethink some things. The other issue you run into is, and this is particular, it's not just in WordPress, it can be in others, is somebody's got a page builder that's supposed to be the shortcut way to help put stuff together, but they've ignored some of the features of the page builder, and they've hard coded buttons and they've hard coded other things to it. I've seen that before several times. What happens with that is if any of that code gets outdated as WordPress's core systems get updated, or just the internet as a whole moves on, html moves on and evolves and things get deprecated, two things can happen. One, it can break, but two, because it's old code, it's a vulnerability for malware to get in. And you can also get flagged as potentially having malware because it's not the right code. It's just seeing that a file doesn't have the right thing in it. Learned that one recently through a site we inherited.

Catelin:     Hopefully not the hardware.

Rich:          Oh, the hard way. Oh, the hardware.

Catelin:     The hardware hard way.

Rich:          Software, hard way. So it's just, and WordPress is great, and I think they estimate now it's like 30 to 40% of the websites out on the internet are WordPress. It used to be 70, and there's just way more websites anyway, but it gets, unless you can have somebody in there every day updating things and all of the nooks and crannies where somebody put custom code, it's very, very hard to deal with.

Jesse:        I think a good kind of rule of thumb here is if you dread making updates to your site or you get frustrated every time that you have have to do something on your site, that's a pretty good tell that maybe it's time to look at something else because the, that's, that's just unnecessary headache that you don't need. And it happens to us too. It's like, oh man, this site, it's a real pain. Any time we have to do anything to it, and it just shouldn't be that hard.

Rich:          Well, and our site is that way.

Catelin:     ... if you want to back up to, in terms of business efficiency, if you're spending that much time and frustration updating your website, what else could you be doing with that time? So there is an upfront cost to that lost efficiency as well that you could pour into a new site design?

Jesse:        Well, it goes back to number two too. If you hate making changes and it's a real painful process, you're not going to update your site that often. And then you start to fall in search and your analytics start to go, and it just all kind of ties together and definitely doesn't help anything.

Rich:          Yeah, it's just such a rough spot. And I think when we looked at moving our site into HubSpot, we did a lot of due diligence moving from WordPress to HubSpot about functionality and capabilities and things like that. And I think what was most interesting to me, and we've got a list now that I think will make it to a landing page at some point of, here's all the plug-ins in WordPress that you don't need in HubSpot CMS, because it's just built in. And there are others that have similar things, you could talk about Wix, you could talk about Squarespace and some of those, but the limitations are just huge with those systems. They're really designed for somebody to be able to drag and drop five images in three paragraphs and put up a site. We needed something far more robust that could do everything that we needed it to. And it was really interesting. Also, our site has not gone down since we've moved it to HubSpot. We haven't had the home page do anything weird.

Catelin:     99.9% uptime, I think I was looking at their security features.

Rich:          Yep.

Catelin:     The other HubSpot call out that's important, as I've started talking to clients about why we push or encourage people towards the HubSpot CMS is all of the other analytics and metrics that you can start to tie in when you're utilizing the other hub. So if you're using their marketing hub or their CRM, you can start to tie direct client activities to what they're doing on your website, which can be really valuable in terms of ROI on ads or just in terms of sales dollars. So it becomes very manageable to start understanding where your clients are coming in and what is impactful to them.

Rich:          Well, yeah, that was one of the biggest ones is people hate WordPress's default forms, and so they'll install a form plugin. Well, HubSpot has really robust forms that you can do all kinds of things with, because it was designed for that in the beginning. The CMS is actually one of the last hubs that they added onto it. It was designed for marketing and sales primarily. And so all of those tools that you would layer on and add on a payment portal comes with it, those types of things that are kind of freaky. So yeah. Now we're HubSpot stands again, but that happens right in forever. Maybe they'll put us in their network. We should probably ask at some point. Oh, your favorite one, Jesse, is coming up. I see it on my sheet.

Jesse:        I saved the best for last, and you guys know that I like to be quick and to the point and sometimes brutally honest. So that's what we're going to do here with number five.

Catelin:     You don't pull any punches in the Cocktails, Tangents, and Answers podcast.

Jesse:        And we really shouldn't on websites, specifically. So number five, it's just flat out ugly. You can kind of sugarcoat it a little bit and just say it's an outdated user experience. That's just a fancy way to say that. It's terrible.

Rich:          I feel like we need to throw back to high school and it's the U-G-L-Y. You ain't got no alibi, you ugly.

Catelin:     Oh my goodness.

Rich:          You ugly.

Catelin:     Are they still doing that? Are we still doing that?

Rich:          I don't know if they do. It feels very rude for today's more touchy feely, are they beyond Gen Z now? No, high school would still be Gen Z, right?

Catelin:     I don't know.

Rich:          I don't know either.

Catelin:     I'm too old.

Rich:          Whatever generation this is.

Jesse:        Yeah, I think it needs to be said, and I think if you're being brutally honest with yourself, you know when your site isn't looking great anymore, it might have been great at one time, five years ago, that might have been the look and the style and kind of the user experience everybody was expecting and dealing with too. But we kind of said in some earlier points, things evolve, websites evolve layouts, and kind of conventions evolve and your brand has to do the same thing. So yeah, just that improved user experience getting past the design thing, because design can be fairly subjective. So when you start looking at something a little bit more concrete user experience, are they actually seeing everything that they expect to see and it making it a good experience for your customers, basically. I think that's kind of where it boils down to if it's a good site or not. And if they're getting frustrated and bouncing out to point number one, your site's not very effective. So yeah, we see it all the time. I think it's a very common problem, probably right up there with the last one is that it keeps breaking, but yeah, you sometimes just have to come to terms with it and that's good.

Rich:          Yeah, and if you think your site looks like it was built in 1995, your customers think your site was built in 1995, and it probably was.

Jesse:        Or even 2015 or 2018, the way that stuff-

Catelin:     Certainly that was only two years ago.

Jesse:        Right? Nobody do the math on that one. But as fast as everything progresses, five years as far as a website's lifetime is quite a while. So I think if you hit that five year mark, just by default, you should probably start looking at some things. It doesn't have to be a full redesign, maybe it is, but you know, should start looking at updating some things, making sure it's still effective and how it's working, how you want it to.

Catelin:     And even thinking about in terms of your business, are you still doing the exact same thing in your business that you were five years ago? Likely things have changed and evolved, and you want to communicate that to your clients that yes, we are current, we know what the latest industry standards and practices are. We have updated and optimized our actual business dealings or our activities. You want a website that reflects that?

Jesse:        Absolutely.

Rich:          Well, and that goes back to services and things. One of my big pet peeves is I go to a company's website and I see something, "Oh, this makes sense." And I like email them or I call them and... Well, who am I kidding? I don't call them, I email them and they're like, "Oh yeah, we don't do that anymore." And you're like, "Well, why is it on your website? Take it off your website." "Oh, yeah. We just haven't gotten around to updating that." Haven't gotten around to updating the number one place people go to look for information.

Catelin:     Well, that's such a good point too is, I think it's really easy as business owners and business people to be in the weeds about your stuff. And you get bogged down in the day today and you forget what is client facing if you aren't analyzing and looking at that every day. And so it is really valuable to take a step back and look at your collateral, your business collateral, and say, if I was a client who knew nothing about us, would this make me hire us?

Rich:          Yeah

Catelin:     And being brutally honest with yourself in terms of that is challenging but valuable.

Rich:          It's the equivalent of having your brochure on your countertop and the paper's getting yellow. It's just like, that's not how it works.

Catelin:     Right? Yeah.

Jesse:        So I gave a good rule of thumb with the last one, if updating things is a pain point for you, I think the tell on this one is if you're embarrassed by it and-

Catelin:     Ouch.

Jesse:        Yeah, it hurts when clients or new clients come to us and we say, "Oh, yeah, we looked at your website." And they just grimace and wince like, "Oh yeah, don't go to our website." So if you're embarrassed by your website, if you're embarrassed to send people to your website, because you know how it looks and it represents what it represents, that, it just hurts my heart.

Catelin:     Please let us help you.

Jesse:        Yeah. It's like, oh man, your website should be one of the most proud things, obviously outside of the service or products that you offer, but your website should reflect all of that, and it should be something that you're very proud of.

Rich:          Yeah. Somebody asked me if we have a brochure the other day, and I just kind of laughed. I'm like... I have a business card that I never give out to anybody, even though I love them and they're wonderful, and we do print those, but I'm like, "We have a website and it's got everything on it."

Catelin:     Yeah, why wouldn't you want the brochure that lives in people's pockets to be updated and accurate?

Rich:          Yeah, exactly. And that's the other thing is you're not spending money on printing. You're not spending money on distribution. You're not hiring some kid to go stick them on windshield wipers at the big game or whatever.

Catelin:     Which is not legal in most cases anyways.

Rich:          I hope not. It's just littering. Ugh, it's terrible. But also shame on the people who pull them off their windshield wiper and throw them on the ground. Just take it in the car, you know you've got that little trash thing in your door anyway, where you're throwing your gum wrappers and your Starbucks cups and stuff. Just put it in there and then when you clean the trash out, you'll clean the trash out.

Jesse:        Or you sell your car and it's somebody else's problem.

Rich:          I mean, there's that, yeah. You don't get dinged at CarMax if you've got a little bit of trash in there. They don't want dirt and mud, but they actually told us, they're like, "You don't have to go do a hard wax or anything because we're going to do all that when we resell your car, so you're just wasting money and time. We don't judge on that." I was like, "Oh, dammit." Yeah, so these are really good. So analytics are telling you everything is off, your search has slipped or fallen off, or you're just not there at all. Ideally, first page, perhaps first or second page, the positive one, you want to grow.

Jesse:        The uplifting.

Rich:          The uplifting one. You've just outgrown your current website and you want to add on, you had a baby, you had a new product baby, now you need to add on your website. And the last two, it keeps breaking, or it's U-G-L-Y, ugly and you don't have an alibi for that. Those are all really great ones. I know that there's probably 60 other signs, but these are some really good ones that just, they hit you right in the face when you look at your website. And if that's the case, just bid that thing out or talk to somebody about making incremental improvements. You don't have enough right now, do incremental improvements, which is a whole other podcast also. Just topic, topic, topic. Just coming out of me like crazy today.

Catelin:     He's a well-

Jesse:        Write that down. Write that down.

Rich:          Zack's got them. He's probably already got those on the list, I'm sure.

Jesse:        I'm sure they are.

Catelin:     Steel trap over there.

Rich:          All right. It's fun to watch him.

Catelin:     Jesse, thank you for your expertise. We appreciate you. I don't think we say that enough. We appreciate you.

Jesse:        Well, thanks for letting me rant a little bit more. I appreciate it.

Rich:          Absolutely.

Catelin:     Anytime.

Jesse:        It's a nice outlet.

Rich:          Until next time. That's it for another episode of Cocktails, Tangents, and Answers.

Catelin:     We hope it was as much fun to listen to as it was to make.

Rich:          You can find me on Twitter or Instagram at @richmackey. I try not to make it too difficult, it's just my name. And you can find our agency at Antidote_71. That's A-N-T-I-D-O-T-E, underscore 71 on Twitter and Instagram as well.

Catelin:     And you can find me at home sipping a craft cocktail prepared by my in-home bartender. It's my husband.

Rich:          We'll be back with another episode every other week and a whole new cocktail recipe, plenty more tangents, and of course answers to those pressing marketing questions.

Catelin:     And if you'd like to send us a question, you can go to to send us an email.

Rich:          Or you can call our hotline at (402) 718-9971 and leave us a voicemail. Your questions might be used for future episodes of the podcast

Catelin:     For now, like and subscribe, and tune in next time.