Website Design Pet Peeves
Website Design Pet Peeves that Can Turn Customers Away
You need to design your website for your end user, no matter who that is. There are some key elements that every website should have and some things it shouldn’t. Here are a few of my website design pet peeves.
1. Websites that don’t offer easy-to-find contact information. For retail, restaurant and other businesses where you want customers to come inside, you need to make sure your website has your address, phone number and ideally a link to a map program for instant directions. (I know this website does not include an address or map. That is because Sarah Lanse Designs is a home-based business). Restaurants or retail spaces that are difficult to find are huge turnoffs for customers.
2. Websites that are difficult to manage. Websites should be easy to navigate. If a customer cannot find what he or she is looking for quickly, that customer will go somewhere else. Make everything as easy to find as possible in order to keep customers coming back.
3. Websites with a lot of Flash. Flash intros used to be standard on all different kinds of websites, but have fallen out of favor recently. There are quite a few reasons for this but my biggest Flash-related pet peeve is that it makes sites take too long to load. Additionally, flash doesn’t work well on mobile devices and it does nothing for your SEO (search engine optimization). Flash is great for video games but otherwise, I recommend staying away from it. Check out this post from FolioSnap on reasons you shouldn’t use Flash.
4. Websites that don’t serve as a hub for your other online activities. Your website is the hub of your digital presence. It should include links to your social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. If you have a newsletter, blog or any other content, you should also make that information easy to find from your website.
5. Writing for SEO, not customers. SEO helps you get discovered, but it doesn’t get you sales. Write your content for your customers, not your search engines. Not only will your customers notice, search engines will, too. In fact, search engines often flag websites as spam if they have too many keywords and not enough legitimate content.
6. No mobile site. These days, you do not need to build a separate website for mobile, you just need a responsive design. That means your website is designed to change to fit any screen, whether on a computer, tablet or cell phone. With a responsive site, you build it once to fit all platforms. That saves time and money in the website design process.
7. Content that isn’t updated. You need to keep your website updated at all times. This does not mean you need to add something every day. It needs that you need to make regular changes to your website, whether it’s adding new products for eCommerce, changing featured items or even adding a new blog post on a regular schedule.
Those are my top website design pet peeves. Check out some other website pet peeves to consider before your start your website design process.