4 Common Mistakes Web Designers Make
Whether you have hired someone to build your website or you’re taking care of it yourself, you must be able to differentiate between a sloppy website and a website that serves its purpose. A large number of business websites end up being showpieces that add little value to the business.
Let’s go through the four common mistakes you’re likely to make and how you can avoid these.
Mistake 1: Treating Your Website Like a Piece of Art
Some people don’t have a website. They have a painting.
A splash of this colour. A drop of that colour. Out-of-space call-to-actions. And let’s not forget a fancy script font, because every modern website needs one of those!
Great to look at but totally dysfunctional.
Sure, your website should be elegant and responsive. But before that, the users should be able to navigate through your web pages easily and find what they are looking for.
But what’s wrong with using multiple colours, fonts and font sizes?
Well, each different colour, font, or font size creates friction. Friction is good if you want your visitors to pause and pay attention to that friction-causing thing. Yet, friction is bad if you want your prospects to read your text attentively without any interruptions. Also, every image, every fancy feature, every new font you add to your website slows it down.
Mistake 2: Treating Your Website Like a Department Store
In a department store, everything is organized in sections. Burger buns are in the bread section, M&M’s in the sweets department, and you usually won’t find pickles on the same shelf as cereal.
Some businesses treat their websites the same way: Info about themselves only on the “About” page; Services only on the “Services” page; and Testimonials only on the “Testimonials” page.
But a store:
- Doesn’t know what products an average customer needs, so mixing stuff together won’t make sense
- Can afford to have customers spend a bit more time searching for products because going to another store will take them much longer than those extra three minutes they need to find the peanut butter
- (Should) know your customers’ exact needs and can mix your ‘products’ (aka pieces of information) to match those needs faster
- Can’t afford to make them wander along your ‘aisles’ for too long searching for the right info, because your competitor is just a click away
Plus, persuasion is best done in a conversation where nobody needs to run to another ‘section’ to get the missing piece of info.
- On your homepage, include some info about you, your services and social proof
- On every sales page, include testimonials
- On your “About” page, talk not only about yourself but also how you help
Mistake 3: Disrupting the Natural Reading Pattern of Your Visitors
Can your visitors follow the flow of your content with ease?
Consider the three examples given below of arranging your content on a page.
One column: A no-brainer. Your visitors will read from top to bottom.
One wide column + one narrow column: That’s a no-brainer as well. They know that the main text is in the wide column and that the narrow column is a sidebar. Yet, studies show that website visitors don’t pay much attention to the content in sidebars.
Plus, if it has visually prominent elements, it may distract them from the main content. So, although your visitors will know how to read your page, they may not do it in the way you wanted them to.
Two equal columns: Now your visitors are struggling. Obviously, you want them to read the left column from top to bottom and then the right column from top to bottom. But they can’t concentrate, as it’s not a natural reading pattern. Plus, the visual highlights in both columns are pulling their attention in different directions.
To guide your visitors and make sure they read your page in the order you want them to with ease, structure your page based on a natural reading pattern.
Mistake 4: Not Including Enough Call-to-Actions
Do you know the saying “Strike while the iron’s hot”?
The hot iron in question is your engaged visitor. Call-to-actions give them an opportunity to take your relationship further.
You created your website with a purpose. Call-to-actions are the keys that open the doors leading to that purpose.
Here are some actions you can ask your visitors to take on your pages:
- Homepage (multiple CTAs): Contact / View services / View a post with a freebie / Sign up for updates
- About page (single CTA): Contact / Sign up for updates
- Services page (single CTA): Contact / Fill out a form / Book an appointment
- Blog post (multiple CTA): Download a resource / Sign up for updates
- Resource PDF (multiple CTA): Check out your homepage / Check out another ultra-useful post
- “Thank you” page (single CTA): Follow you on social / Take a survey
- FAQ page: Contact you (if they haven’t found the answer) / Check out additional resources on your website
Don’t rely on your visitors to come back to the navigation and select another page. Offer them a logical next step on the spot. Because with every additional page they read, they get to know, like and trust you more.
Romulus Dynamics is a Human-Centered Web Design Agency
We not only create elegant, responsive and mobile-friendly websites but websites that drive conversions and growth. Our design focuses on the end-user which bridges the gap between you and your visitors.
If you need help with a website or your digital strategy, go ahead and reach out to Romulus Dynamics today!