The Internet continues to be one of the most popular resources that people use when they are researching a company or product. Despite that, there are still some very basic – and easy to remedy – mistakes that businesses make on their websites. Here are seven common website mistakes that companies still make, and some ways to avoid making them yourself:
1. Static Design
All websites should be using responsive design. There is just no way around this. Today’s searches aren’t just done on desktop computers, they are also done on mobile phones and tablets. Think about your own search habits: how often are you using a desktop device vs. a mobile device? If that isn’t enough to convince you, don’t forget that Google actually penalizes websites that aren’t responsive by giving them less weight in search results. Just read these 6 Undeniable Reasons Why Your Website Should Be Responsive and never think about static design again.
2. Thoughtless Design
Each piece of your website real estate should be considered when you are working on your design. Your navigation, your headers, your sidebars, your footers – all of these areas are just as important as the main content areas of your website. Don’t get lazy, and don’t fill those areas with ads, either.
The main reason that people visit your website is to find information. If your design makes the most basic information difficult to find, you’ll see high abandon rates. The main rule is to design for what the customer wants to find, not what you want to say. Some A/B testing should help you determine the most viewed content, as well as the best location for that content.
4. Outdated Design
Websites require a lot of maintenance, from updating your content to keeping your site secure. Either you or your digital marketing agency should actively be monitoring your themes and plugins – above and beyond your auto-update options. You should also make sure that you are removing outdated content, optimizing existing content, and fixing broken links.
5. Bait and Switch Design
If you use outgoing links to microsites from your main site, you might end up confusing your website visitors. Once on a microsite, users might be looking for your main website’s navigation, or a way to get back to where they were. Try to minimize the use of microsites when you can, but if you must use them, make sure they open in a new browser tab so that visitors aren’t shut out from your main website.
6. Big Design
This one is simple: bad website design uses large image and video files that slow down your website’s load time. Optimized websites will have better ranking in Google search, as well as lower site abandon weights.
7. Annoying Design
A big mistake that is still happening with website design is the improper use of pop ups and advertising. An entry and exit pop up is completely acceptable; a pop up for every page, or after every minute is not acceptable. You also want to minimize distractions, so don’t annoy your visitors with advertisements that cover both sidebars and your header.
If you’re looking for more web design mistakes you should avoid, be sure to read 7 Web Design Mistakes You Don’t Want To Make.