How to determine if my website is outdated?

Technology, Development

Rahel Schaad

February 27, 2024

How to determine if my website is outdated?

Why having a modern website is not a luxury but a necessity

In a world where first impressions matter and often take place online, your website is the face of your business and often the first point of contact for potential customers. But what happens when this digital shop window is outdated? Why having a contemporary website is essential and how you can determine if your website needs a refresh is discussed here.

Why does my website always need to be up to date anyway?

The internet evolves rapidly, and with it, the technologies used to operate websites change. An outdated website can not only lead to security vulnerabilities but also damage your company’s reputation, as users expect a modern and efficient online presence. A current website ensures a better user experience, improved SEO rankings, and protects against the risks associated with outdated technologies.

But what exactly is a modern website?

A modern website is characterized by a set of features. These include responsive design, which automatically adapts to various screen sizes, fast loading times, and the use of current technologies such as HTML5 and CSS3. Modern websites offer intuitive navigation and are optimized for search engines to ensure better visibility. They also utilize the latest security protocols to keep data secure.

What technologies are considered outdated and what risks do they pose?

It’s important to develop an awareness of the technologies powering your website. Outdated technologies can significantly impact your online presence and pose various risks.

Outdated JavaScript versions

JavaScript is an essential language for web development that enables dynamic content on websites. Older JavaScript versions can cause compatibility issues with modern browsers and compromise your website’s security. Websites still based on ECMAScript 5 or earlier should be updated to ECMAScript 6 (ES2015) or newer to benefit from improved syntax, modules, and security features.

PHP <= 7

PHP is a widely used server-side scripting language. PHP 7.4 reached the end of its life in late 2022. Using versions below PHP 7.4 means your website will no longer receive security updates, making it vulnerable to attacks. It’s crucial to update to the currently supported PHP version (at least PHP 8.0 or higher) to benefit from improved performance features and security patches.

Table-based layouts for content

Using tables for website layout was common in the early days of web design but is now considered outdated. Modern web designs use CSS Flexbox or Grid to create layouts. These methods are not only more flexible and powerful but also improve accessibility and responsiveness of websites.

Non-responsive design

Responsive web design dynamically adjusts your website to various screen sizes and resolutions. Non-responsive websites offer a poor user experience on mobile devices, leading to a loss of visitors. Implementing responsive design with media queries and flexible layouts is crucial to ensure optimal viewing on all devices.

How do I keep my website up to date?

Maintaining and updating your website is an ongoing process necessary to keep your online presence secure and relevant.

Reviewing and updating used technologies

Start by reviewing your website for outdated technologies. Tools like Wappalyzer or BuiltWith can help identify your website’s technologies. Then, plan upgrades for outdated technologies, including JavaScript libraries, PHP versions, and web server software.

Transitioning to responsive design

Use modern CSS techniques like Flexbox and CSS Grid to create a responsive layout. Consider mobile-first design principles to ensure your website performs as well on mobile devices as on desktops.

Speed optimization

Use tools like Google PageSpeed Insights to analyze your website’s loading times and receive speed optimization recommendations. This includes compressing images, minimizing CSS and JavaScript files, and utilizing browser caching.

Security checks and updates

Ensure all used plugins, templates, and platforms are up to date to close known security vulnerabilities. Consider using a Web Application Firewall (WAF) and implementing HTTPS to secure data transmission.

Updating content and SEO

Review your website content for relevance and accuracy. Ensure SEO best practices are applied, including the use of meta tags, alt attributes for images, and structured data to improve your website’s visibility in search engines.

At Comvation, we understand the importance of a modern and secure online presence. That’s why we not only offer a diagnosis for outdated websites but also develop tailored solutions to bring your digital business card up to date. With a deep understanding of current web technologies and an eye for future trends, we assist you in updating your website and advancing your online strategy.

Pic Credit: Diane Morales Garcia

Another reading material