Website Refresh or Website Rebuild? How to Decide What’s Best for Your Firm.

Updated: Nov 15, 2021


We don’t win work from our website.

The team at Middle of Six has heard this more than once.


We’re the first to acknowledge that it really does take a village. It’s true that many, interrelated factors drive brand awareness and company success. It’s also undeniable that your website, or your “digital storefront,” is a significant element of your brand experience and serves to reinforce the value provided by your company.


Each of your customer’s unique interactions with your brand—your “brand touchpoints”— should support your messaging and vision. When something feels off, whether it’s your website, print collateral, or a social media platform, there can be a negative impact on the way your customers perceive your business and brand.


The Facts.

To create a strong presence and experience for your business, all your brand touchpoints need to be aligned, or “on brand”—supporting your vision, messaging, and visual identity.


Nearly 75% of web users judge a business’ credibility based on the impression left by their website. This almost certainly includes industry partners, subcontractors, and proposal judges. To return to our analogy, if your “store” is beginning to show signs of wear—a cracked window, a sticky door, incorrect hours of operation—it’s time to consider a refresh or redesign.


Which brings us to our next topic: Is a website refresh or rebuild the right next step for your business and brand?


Refresh vs. Rebuild: What’s the Difference?

There are typically two paths available when discussing major updates to your existing website: Refresh or Rebuild. Are we envisioning a fresh coat of paint, updating fixtures, and putting in some new windows to refresh your aesthetic? Or, if your brand and business has outgrown your current digs, it might be time to start knocking down walls and rebuilding from the ground up.

And that’s the distinction.


The first, most straightforward and cost-effective approach, is to refresh your website. In this case, we’ll retain the same platform and back-end of your current property. We’ll fix technical problems, typos, broken links, incorrect information, and update imagery. As part of your tailored scope of work, we can also develop new content, introduce a secondary or tertiary color palette, and tweak simple design elements. These seemingly small website improvements can make a significant impact in enhancing the perception of your brand and business.


The website rebuild comprises a ground-up website constructed on a new foundation with a new user experience. A rebuild, while typically more time and cost intensive, offers a completely new approach to your website that will be customized to who your brand and business is today, as well as allowing for continued growth and evolution well into the future. When you opt for a rebuild, we will assess, strategize, and develop new design, imagery, narrative, branding, video, implement state-of-the-art aesthetics—you name it. If you’re unsatisfied with your current platform or hosting provider, this is a great opportunity to make a change.

A successful website represents your brand identity and judiciously presents your values. Both now, and into the future as your brand grows and evolves.

Which option is right for your brand?

As a starting point, hopefully you’ve already conducted an initial website audit of your existing property. If not, start with this step so you can make the most informed decision for your brand.


Now, let’s dive into the fun part: Choosing your own adventure!


The path of least resistance is going to be a refresh. As outlined above, you can accomplish a lot in a short period of time and with minimal investment. If time, budget, or capacity is a major consideration, a simple refresh may be your best bet. Take care of the low hanging fruit, look for opportunities to update imagery, and place your trust in capable writers and designers to optimize your investment.


For some businesses and clients, a rebuild makes the most sense. If your Content Management System (CMS), website platform, or technical state is compromised—that is, your website doesn’t work, the back-end is buggy and unresponsive, and users are having a generally terrible experience when looking you up—a rebuild will help you avoid time consuming and costly technical investigations. If making simple updates to your website (like adding a new team member or changing the text on the homepage) is cumbersome, requires heavy coding, or requires the support of an expensive third party, a rebuild may be just the thing.


A successful website represents your brand identity and judiciously presents your values. Both now, and into the future as your brand grows and evolves.

You may be looking to ramp up your web presence with an entirely updated brand, add cutting-edge functionality, or build out more complex hierarchies of information such as a directory, project portfolio, or database. Selecting a modern, technically-sound platform and theme—with tools designed to execute on your vision with precise controls—will yield a far greater impact than aesthetic touch ups that don’t address poor back-end functionality.

No matter which option you choose, an investment in enhancing your website can differentiate your business, amplify brand awareness, and contribute to positive perception and engagement with your customers. New, modern design, dynamic imagery, and a compelling story that resonates with your audience can mean the difference between a customer walking through your door, or continuing down the sidewalk to the next “digital storefront.”

Interested in more resources or ready to take the leap?

We’re an email or phone call away.


Looking for more in-depth discussion on how to refresh or rebuild your website? Be sure to check out episode 04 of our podcast, The Shortlist!

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