If you run a small business, your website is one of the most important assets you have. It’s the focal point of your marketing efforts, it’s where your customers come to learn more about you, but it’s also where they come to check your products and services. Your website is literally the virtual front door to your business and it must work perfectly.
Websites, however, are rarely perfect. Small design or functionality errors can go unnoticed, but there are some mistakes that can make you lose a lot of money. Make sure your website works spectacularly by avoiding these all-too-common web design mistakes:
1. There’s too much going on
Ever came across a website that is jam-packed with flashy graphics, crazy colors, weird fonts and sales buttons? These websites can overwhelm visitors and may even annoy them – the result? – they leave immediately. Your website has to be clear, easy to understand and interact with. Visitors must understand what it’s all about in just a few seconds, otherwise, they will move on. And crowded websites are the #1 thing that scares them away. Avoid busy, flashy and in-your-face designs like the plague.
2. Too little going on
Less is more – yes, the quote behind minimalist art also rings true in web design, but there are some websites which take it far too literally. When your website is virtually empty, it’s a bad sign and your visitors will jump ship ASAP. Websites which leave too much to the imagination tend to bore visitors and won’t be able to work as a good image for your brand. Simple imagery does work, but don’t take it too far.
3. Poor navigation
Navigation issues will kill your website’s reputation in no time. Even if your content and design is stellar, poor menus, buttons and links may turn your website in a complete disaster. When people can’t actually use your website and find what they are looking for, they leave… and they are not coming back. Make sure your navigation is simple and straightforward. Make your search box visible and your contact page recognizable.
4. Stale, ugly and out-of-date content
Content is a huge part of your website. People will immediately notice your articles, photos and videos and will know if your website is active. Make sure you have the latest news, blogs and information on your website. Choose good photos (there are tonnes of stock photos providers out there) and update your graphics. Include links to your social media profiles and let people know your website is active.
5. Missing the target
You run a small business and you must know your target audience like the palm of your hand. This has to be visible on your website. It has to look like it belongs to that specific niche like it’s a natural addition and that it can relate to its customers. People will see you as their partner, not just a business which sells products for a profit. Websites can look professional, but also inspire users, by being entertaining, funny or educational. Make sure you understand how your visitors see your website.