The main essence of building a business website is to drive customer engagement and ultimately increase conversion.
But, this essence becomes undermined when there are critical web design mistakes on your website.
As a business owner, I understand your urge to give the user what you think they want.
So you want to go above and beyond to impress your users with different elements of web designs such as color, images, content, typefaces, accordions and so on.
However, research has shown that most users that land on your website have less than three seconds to decide if to stay or move on to another site.
You may be throwing money into thin air if your website is unattractive, loads lazily, and difficult for both human and machine users to navigate.
If you have decided to build your website yourself because you want to cut costs, you need to be aware of severe web design mistakes that can cost you in terms of money and customer’s conversion.
That is why in this post, you will learn about 9 web design mistakes that you should avoid.
Let’s dive in.
This is number one on the list of web design mistakes in 2021 that can cost your business thousands of dollars.
If you have decided to design your business website yourself, then you must have determined your web layout, designed your logo, chosen your color, theme, images, fonts and written content with a unique tone.
That’s a great job!
But, if these elements do not portray your business as a brand then you have created a website for your personal use, not for your customers.
If they can’t feel your brand through your layout, logo, color schemes, font, and content then you may lose them to a competitor.
A visitor should feel the uniqueness in your perspective when they land on your website.
To stand out from the competition, you need to create a unique, clear, and memorable brand for your website. From your logo, color to even the font used, it has to create an impression on your audience.
When visitors land on your website, they want solutions to their problems. If your content and design don’t speak directly to their pain point, they’ll leave your website.
As a business owner offering multiple services, if you cram multiple unrelated services on a landing page it won’t help the user to quickly reach a decision.
Also, If your fonts are too small, unclear, or if your images are irrelevant to your content, users won’t have a great experience on your site.
You shouldn’t be too broad in your offerings. Organize related services on one page and use the navigation menu to show the various divisions of your services.
Also, avoid using fancy font styles that won’t help the user understand your offerings. Use bold and big fonts on your websites.
Further, you should use original images on your website because this builds trust and confidence in the visitor.
I recently visited a blog and there was no search button on its homepage.
I was angry at that navigation mistake. After reading invaluable content on the blog, I wanted to search for specific ones, but it was impossible because there was no search button.
A navigation button makes it easy for a user to find specific items on your website.
While on a particular page, a user may decide to look at other pages on your website and if they can’t quickly access the menu, a CTA, your contact info, or a search button, the user may be frustrated.
Make it easy for users to be able to navigate to your homepage. It is easier for them to get their bearing from there when they are lost on your website.
Also, you should provide clear navigation menus, which will show your visitors where they will go once they click on that item and suggest to them what they would find there.
Call-to-action buttons are those imperative texts with links, designed to make a visitor take a desired action on a website.
A desired action could be to sign up, subscribe, learn more about a product, or get started on a coaching program.
When used correctly, CTAs can boost your website conversion.
And when used in an awkward manner, it can prevent people from staying on your website.
As a small business owner, I know you want to convert your prospects as soon as they land on your website, but too many CTA buttons on your website can be quite annoying for a visitor.
It gives them the impression that you are more concerned about making money from them than their need for information about your service.
CTA buttons should be used strategically on your business website.
Your CTA should be clear and a user should easily locate it when they decide to take an action.
A CTA button should come in as an inevitable action that the user needs to take in order not to miss something amazing.
Other factors such as content, image, layout and design are crucial indices for creating a lasting impression on a website visitor.
These elements, together with your CTA should portray a consistent value that would be irresistible for your visitor and would therefore prompt them to take the desired action.
Every business has its audience. While creating your website you must have put that into consideration.
Perhaps, you have gone ahead and created a customer avatar before creating your website, but your website design may not reflect this research.
If your design does not speak to your defined audience it could affect interaction and conversion with your website.
For instance, the audience for a local plumbing website is different from the audience for an e-commerce website that sells luxurious bags for women. The two websites target specific audiences and if their web design doesn’t connect with their users, they’ll experience less user interaction.
Just imagine when you go to these different sites and you can’t find the elements you are looking for. You won’t connect with the site, right?
Thus, a user should be able to connect with your business from your web design.
Research your ideal customer avatar;
Identify elements of color, content, and style that they would want to interact with;
Then integrate that into your web design.
Note that these elements must be consistent throughout your website.
For instance, a confident tone in your content should be balanced with your choice of layout. Your content should be designed in such a way that makes it looks as if it is an integral part of the design.
Avoid cliches and come up with innovative titles, headings and cliff-hangers that are peculiar to your brand.
Recent research has shown that 40% of visitors will wait no longer than three seconds for a web page to load.
That means that your visitor will become impatient and ditch your site if it doesn’t load between two to three seconds.
Some elements that can affect your sites’ speed include large image size, unused plugins, heavy videos, or large design files.
If your site is designed on a content management system such as WordPress, you can install a plugin such as WordPress Rocket to help you increase your sites’ speed.
For the average speed of your business website, you should aim for between two to three seconds to reduce your bounce rate.
You should maintain a low bounce rate because a high bounce rate affects your ranking on the search engine.
However, this could be a more technical issue, so you should get a professional to help you optimize your site’s speed.
A business website’s essence is lost if it isn’t ranking on the search engine for its target keywords.
This means that a website with poor SEO is invisible to its target audience. And what is the need of a website if it isn’t visited by customers?
Poor SEO or its absence can lead to a severe loss of ROI.
To begin your SEO, you need to enable the search engine visibility for your website and submit your site to Google Search Console.
In addition, you need to follow the best on-page optimization strategies to rank your website.
To become visible and remain an authority in your niche, your off page or technical SEO has to complement your on-page efforts.
Except you rely on paid traffic, you should intensify your SEO efforts in order to attract relevant organic traffic to your business website.
This is another severe web design mistake. Desktop view is different from mobile. You can’t just assume that all your customers would always be on their computers.
Local business visitors are going mobile. According to Google, more than 41% of local searches end up in a store visit.
If your website is only optimized for desktop users, you may be losing a lot of mobile users who are looking for your services on mobile.
You need to make your website responsive across various devices.
Ensure that the excellent user experience that your visitors feel on a desktop is the same feeling they get when they visit your site on mobile.
A visual hierarchy is a UI/UX term which refers to the manner of presentation of items in a website according to their relevance.
What this means is that there are some items that users visiting a website like to first interact with before other items.
For instance, the top of a charity website can have a donation button followed by a brief bio about the charity before other items such as evidence of charity activities. On the other hand, an ecommerce store would typically present a list of products and their prices rather than the company’s bio on the top of their homepage.
Lack of visual hierarchy can result in a poor user experience as the user won’t be able to identify the most relevant items on the website and they won’t be able to complete your desired action.
To create an effective strategy for your visual hierarchy, research into your customer’s user experience by studying competitors that are already dominating the SERP.
This should provide a template for you to design a visual hierarchy that works for your target audience.
In this article, you have discovered 9 web design mistakes you should avoid, but it is pertinent to state that there are a lot of things to be sure are working correctly for your website.
Most of the solutions provided here are basic and you may need a professional to help you determine the specific issue with your website.
If you are unsure of your website performance, you can get a professional to help you with a detailed site audit.