8 ERRORS TO AVOID WHEN DESIGNING A WEBSITE

8 ERRORS TO AVOID WHEN DESIGNING A WEBSITE

by Joe Shara on 20/07/2019 |

Updated at 9/08/2020


In this current time and age, having a website is a criteria for any successful business. Not only does it relay your business to a wider audience but having an online presence is a sure way to establish your authority in the industry, double your customer base and double (or even triple) your revenue. Your website is one of your business's most important tool.

But designing a website for your business can sometimes be difficult. 

The goal of your web design should not only be to look appealing but to increase conversions and generate revenue. Your website design could make or mar your business goals which is why a lot of these websites online are not converting. 

Website design has advanced (and still is) over the years but some design principles still remains unchanged. While creating or updating your website, these are some of the errors to avoid:

UNCLEAR MESSAGE

This should be the main factor  to be considered in your website design. Your website should tell a user right away what your business is all about and why they should choose you. You have just 5 seconds or less to create an impression or a user exits your website. No matter how perfect your web design may seem, if it does not relay your business in the most effective and shortest time possible then, users tend to leave and may never return.

The Facebook homepage shows that it is a platform for connecting with family, friends, loved ones and even make new friends from anywhere around the globe.

NO RESPONSIVE DESIGN

This is another major factor as Google recommends and favors responsive websites. Visitors are not limited to any device as they surf the internet with their desktops, tablet, smartphone and the likes. Your website should be able to provide optimal viewing experience across a wide range of devices. A responsive web design

You can use the Google Mobile Test to check out how well your website scores. You can read moreabout it here

SLOW PAGE LOAD TIME

Your website should load in three seconds or less on any device. People are so impatient with a lot of things and your website is no exemption. 47% of users expects your page to load in two seconds or less (mobile users have an higher percentage) while 40% exit your website if it takes longer than three seconds.

What makes it more complicated is that Google uses page speed for website rankings and can significantly affect your website if found wanting. You can optimize your web design by cutting speed killers like large images, clunky codes and too much external calls to cloud services.

Want to be sure of your site speed performance? You can use Google PageSpeed Insight tool or Pingdom’s Website Speed Test  to find out, analyze and improve.

POOR NAVIGATION MENU

Users should be able to make their way round your website. Having a clear navigation menu eases users of guessing or thinking too hard of where and how to go about a particular piece of information. They should know where they are and be well oriented on the page as this helps to keep them and show if their questions can be answered or problem solved.

You should avoid 'Animated Navigation' - anything that just moves, rolls, bounces, or flashes while your visitors are trying to find answers to their questions - cos they kill conversions. They consume user's time as users tend to figure it out instead of looking for what they came for. Most website visitors hate it when it happens and usually leave the website never to return.

Your homepage link should be visible enough for users to locate and click as it's one of the first place they'll go to when they are lost or disoriented. You should also include links to other major sections for easy and immediate movement on your website. Using too many menus and menu options should be avoided also.

POOR READABILITY

Is your website easy to read?

Are the fonts correlative?

Is the font size too small or too large?

These and more are some of the questions to be asked when designing your website. Users do not need to squint before reading texts on your website cos they plainly don't have that much time. 

Unclear fonts, poor kearning, tracking and leading, too many fonts and using conflicting fonts are some of the factors that impact the experience of visitors to your website or page - Cognitive Fluency

Cognitive fluency is the ease of use of your website to the visitor. Apart from fonts types and sizes, contents of your website should be proofread to avoid spelling errors and enhance clarity. Visitors cannot truly be persuaded unless they are clear and understand the message of your business through your website. Proofread for spelling errors and grammar.

If your site is hard to use, read or understand then user experience won't be pleasant. 

CONTENT MISTAKES

Contents on your website should focus on visitors and their problems or questions not just on how great your business is. An average visit on your website has just enough time for visitors to read 28% of your text on an average web page which is enough time to decide either to leave or stay on your site. Users should be able to easily scan your website for information at a glance.

This doesn't mean reduction in your content size but creating contents that can be easily scannable, such as:

  • Descriptive sub-headings

  • Short and snappy texts and paragraphs

  • Numbered lists and bullets points

  • Highlighted, Bold and Italicized formatting

SEARCH MISTAKES

Typing into a search bar has become a normal thing to almost everyone. The stress of looking for a particular piece of information is thrown out when we can easily just type it into the search option. As such website visitors expect maximum working search functionality when they browse a site.

Including a search column and button especially in ecommerce will help users locate what they are looking for. Large and complex websites can be managed by the search option as it helps users handle Typos, Hypehns, Plurals and Keyword variations.

LEGAL MISTAKES

Legal mistakes includes :

  • Insecure Web Domain: Especially in ecommerce, everyone knows data breaches and hacks are becoming a common problem to  deal with. Your site needs to be secured especially as people see a red flag on an insecure website. And not only on ecommerce sites but any other site that requires any personal information ranging from email to phone numbers and last names.

Even Google and other search engines regard secured websites or they'll limit your website's online visibility. 

  • No Privacy Policy: As many as up to 50% don't understand what a  privacy policy entails but this does not in any way sideline it's usage as some do read it. Some just want to know what you'll do with their information and how you go about it. 

So your privacy policy should always be in place as it assures visitors that you have a plan in place to protect them even if they have no idea of it.

  • No Warranty or Return Policy: The more likely visitors know you've got their back even on some unlikely situation, the more you tend to gain their loyalty. Seeing a warranty or a return policy is a way to increase sales and as such makes your visitors more comfortable.

CONCLUSION

This isn't totally all the mistakes to avoid but your website can work excellently for your business if you can start off by avoiding these few steps as that'll be a huge drive towards success. 

Most websites struggle with making conversions as they still make some of these listed common mistakes. Creating a website is more than just making it look attractive but should be able to convert and give you money. Focusing more on your target audience will help you create the best web design for your website.


If you need any help with designing your website or any part of web development process don't hesitate to contact our web agency. We run the best custom web development agency in Montreal.

Joe Shara

Joe Shara is a in-house journalist and Oshara editor. Tech savvy guy who follows all the latest web & digital developments. Loves cats and complex coding problems.

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