I went to Google Think event last month where John Roberts, the Appliances Online (AO) Chief Exec, told the audience that he always hated his website. He knew that the website could always be better and was constantly pushing his teams to upgrade it. He went on to talk about how User Experience (UX) & Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO) rule at AO with at any one time them running multiple A/B & multivariate tests to improve the website user experience & sales conversion.I've come to hate the old SearchStar website. When we last gave it a significant update a little over two years ago I thought it was fab - interesting illustrations, new colours, better layout etc. We gots of compliments but my good friend & constructive critic, Rob Austen MD of DF Sales, was quite open from the launch about the fact that he didn't like it - he thought the navigation confusing, the text boring & the illustrations overly-weird. In retrospect he was probably mostly right.desktopWhen we critique new client websites we often get told us how several people have actually complimented the organisation on their website. Fact is that business people rarely tell you that they don't like your websites/ideas/business models/new hires etc. This is why the sometime's offensively blunt Rob Austen's of this world are so fabulous.I should have listened to Rob two years ago...We've left it too long and that small voice in my head saying that maybe Rob was right has grown in my head...maybe the website is a bit dated? I'm now raging at the site - I've really started to hate the site. I have to apologise for our branding in presentations and am reluctant to do marketing that will drive traffic to the website - clearly not good! Fortunately about three months ago the Search Star team agreed our agency strategy, brand & positioning for the foreseeable future (led by the lovely Chris Thurling). This allowed us to brief an excellent branding agency and web design agency. Their work is almost completed and next month we'll launch the new website. I can't wait.Moral of the story is to listen to the critics even though the flatterers will outnumber them. Next lesson is to accept the fact that these days a website has an 18 month to 2 year lifespan at most before it needs a major overhaul.