By Teddy Hunt
The purpose of designing a website is to drive traffic to it. When it’s done well, you’ll get more views and effectively promote the product or service you’re selling. If you’re not getting the results you want, perhaps your website’s design just isn’t cutting it. Sure, you might think it’s as attractive as a pot of gold, but that doesn’t mean people who are visiting it will think so too.
Fortunately, some of your problems might just stem from fundamental design issues.
With that said, here are six reasons poor web design drives traffic away from your site, and how to fix it.
1. Your Design Includes a Hideous Background
The fastest way to drive traffic away from your website is to incorporate a background that’s hideous enough scare a blind man. A bad background is either overly busy, poorly contrasted, or animated. If you think your obnoxious background will keep users’ attention, think again.
Instead, use one single color for your background and keep it as simple as possible. If you use more than one color, make sure they compliment each other in a subtle way.
2. Your Design is Tough to Navigate
Getting people to visit your website is an accomplishment in and of itself, but if you’re not keeping them there then what’s the point. A website that’s tough to navigate is another way to keep people from coming back once they click the “x” on the top-right corner of the browser.
People don’t want to aimlessly search for what they want or need. Organize your website strategically so that users can easily navigate it without getting lost and left for dead.
3. Your Design Interrupts the User Experience
Even if your website is easy to navigate, annoying your visitors by constantly bombarding them with pop-up requests and ads will quickly have them running — or better yet, clicking — for the hills. In an online world filled with websites that cater to users’ wants and needs, yours needs to instantly satisfy your visitors without making them work too hard to feel that gratification. Keep the ads and requests to a minimum and you’ll do just that.
4. Your Design is Poorly Planned and Executed
With regard to planning, make sure the person you recruit to build the site is up to par. It is really step-one to your overhaul. If youÂre not able to craft your own website, rely on experts who can do the job. Before you look to bring in a qualified individual or team, check yourself first. Make certain your company or organization has a clear vision and a strong reputation. This will ensure a quality hire.
Practically speaking, if you approach designing your website like an improv comedian does his or her act than chances are you’ll get more people leaving your website than he or she does laughs. Building and designing a website that serves its purpose — drives traffic and makes you money — takes time, effort, and patience. Before rushing into this project, carefully plan and prepare how you want your site to look by using a website wire frame to map it out.
With regard to planning, make sure the person you hire is on the same page. Recruiting and reigning in a top talent is really step-one to your design. If youÂre not able to craft your own website, rely on experts who can do the job.
5. Your Design Doesn’t Have a Consistent Layout
An inconsistent website not only deters people from visiting it, but it makes your brand look unprofessional. When designing your (consistent) website, be sure to stay away from some of these bad design habits.
Â Loud and distracting colors
Â Large and bold fonts that seem to “SHOUT” and not “state”
Â Small and unreadable fonts that users can’t decipher
Â Visually unbalanced pages (poor text-to-image ratio)
Â Spelling and grammar errors
Â Inconsistent styles, color themes, and formats
Â Not making sure the layout displays properly on all Internet browsers
If you pay extra attention to these points, you’ll be well on your way to designing a consistent website.
6. Your Design Includes Flash
Although animations can still have a place on your website (of course, on a very limited basis), it’s more strategic to use an HTML website because it’s properly indexed by search engines and it works on almost all modern devices. If your website visitors are accessing it on a smartphone and your website is Flash, chances are they’ll have trouble viewing it. Essentially, you want to stick to HTML websites so that you don’t waste your time and efforts designing.
If you keep some important points in mind, designing a website won’t seem as difficult as giving a heart transplant.
What are some other tips you can offer website designers looking to drive traffic? Leave a comment below.