A website is an essential marketing tool that is designed to capture the interest of potential customers, engage existing customers and communicate important information about a business’s products and services. Unfortunately, far too many of them are badly designed, and that can force your potential customers to turn to your competitors. A website is all about the user’s experience; whether or not it looks attractive is important, but it is not the only factor to consider. Small and medium-sized businesses make 5 common mistakes on a regular basis, and they could be the difference between success and failure.
1. Poor Navigational Structure
Of course, a great-looking site with careful attention to search engine optimization (SEO) is vital, but it could mean very little if visitors to your website have a frustrating experience once there. Most people arrive at a business website with a need for very specific information; if they can’t find it, they will quickly move on to the next company in the search engine results pages (SERPS). An effective website will have an organised and logical structure, and visitors should not need to concentrate on where they need to go – it should be a natural and seamless process. This can be a tricky balancing act, but an experienced web agency will be able to implement a structure that makes the locating of information a quick and simple process.
2. No Obvious Call to Action
The success of your website only starts at getting it found by potential customers. Creating a user-friendly interface will retain their attention, but what is going to make them commit to your products? In order to have the desired effect, a website must have a clear purpose. Is the objective to sell products or services? Do you want to collect email addresses? A clear and concise call to action will leave visitors in no doubt what they are expected to do, and how the action will help their own interests. The success of a website is based on its conversion rate – the rate at which visitors become new customers. A call to action should be carefully designed, simple and concise.
3. Poor Use of Colour and Contrast
Too many amateur website designers disregard the use of colour and contrast as aesthetic matters, yet they are crucial to your website’s success. Text that is difficult to read against its background will get lost, and your message will go unread. The clever use of colour and contrast will attract the reader to pertinent information as well as creating a striking brand image for your company.
4. Inferior Content
Your content is where your visitors get their information, so it is vital it engages and informs. Most people will scan information rather than reading large chunks of densely-structured text. Content should be presented in a logical hierarchy, and short paragraphs of information with relevant headings will help visitors to find what they are looking for before becoming frustrated. Ensure your content is easy to sift through, surrounded by lots of white space and written to a high standard.
5. Information Overload
The temptation for many business-owners is to squeeze as much into a website as possible. However, this will result in cluttered pages that will simply have too much going on. A cluttered website will be distracting and frustrating for visitors, and it will force them to search for what they are looking for elsewhere. Make sure your homepage includes only a summary of your company’s main products and the benefits they deliver. Use your homepage to direct customers to other pages for detailed information, and use relevant images that are relevant to your core message sparingly.
Creating a website that attracts visitors, engages their interest and turns them into your loyal customers of the future is a very complex process, but enlisting the services of a professional web design agency will greatly increase your website’s chances of success.