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Top 15 Website Design Mistakes to Avoid

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clock-iconNovember 17, 2020
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Do you want to create a website and establish a strong business presence online? Or are you thinking of redesigning your current website? Before taking that dive, it is highly recommended to properly plan your approach. To help you with that, here are 15 web design mistakes you should know about and avoid.

Confusing Navigation

One of the most common website design mistakes to avoid is confusing navigation. If your menus and buttons are too complicated, they will frustrate your visitors who will quickly leave your pages rather than suffer through the ordeal.

Take note that anyone who lands on your website is looking for information. This may be the products and services you offer, your contact information, or a guide you've published. Their search intentions may be clear or vague. In any case, if they get stuck in a page they didn't exactly look for or if they cannot quickly find the information they need, visitors will just close your tab and do another search.

For this reason, it is important to make sure that your site's navigation is clear and straightforward so you do not lose many of your target customers. As much as possible, keep the menu options minimal and keep all your content organized in a logical and intuitive manner.

Poor Overall User Experience

Aside from the navigation, take a good look at the overall user experience as well when designing a website. Avoid these common pitfalls:

  • too many pages to go through before finding the information needed
  • icons and symbols used on the site are not clear or are jarring
  • too many advertisements or banners overwhelming the eyes
  • broken links
  • inappropriate text font and subpar images

Treat your website the same way you treat your physical store or office. Any customer that enters must have a good experience and won't leave in a huff.

Weak SEO

How do you ensure a customer's awesome experience on your site when they can't find it in the first place?

That is why it is important to take search engine optimization (SEO) seriously. Only by doing thorough keyword research and designing your website in a way that is pleasing to search engines (as well as humans) will your business be able to shine online.

Aim to have several of your content appear on the top results of search engines to gain more visibility. More eyes mean more targeted visitors utilizing your website and the higher the chances of converting them to paying customers.

Absence of Header Tags

Header tags are part of the whole search engine optimization exercise and it can be said that their impact is not as huge compared to other optimization factors you need to consider. But they deserve to be highlighted because they are a great marketing opportunity. Not paying close attention to the text you put into header tags is definitely a mistake and a missed opportunity.

For those who are not familiar, header tags refer to the headings and subheadings used on a page. They will often appear bold or more prominently compared to other texts. They can easily catch attention and convey your brand's message. That is why they need to be catchy and appealing to your visitors without being too verbose for search engines.

Insufficient Contact Information

When it comes to design mistakes, don't just focus on the look and feel of your website. Pay attention to the information content as well. Particularly, do not neglect your contact page and keep your contact details updated.

Just imagine your website visitors getting drawn to your services only to find out that they are unable to reach you when they have questions. That screams unprofessional to them and many will even think that your business is a scam. To avoid giving that negative perception, it is recommended to have a dedicated contact page and to have your business info (address, phone number, office hours, etc.) clearly stated on that page, on the site footer, and on any relevant page.

Too Many Call-to-Actions

Common web design mistakes also include the presence of too many call-to-actions. You want to make your visitors take action or move them along the marketing funnel you've set up hence the CTAs. This is understandable.

However, too much of anything is not good.

If there are so many CTAs and if one shows up every few paragraphs, this will only pressure the user. It will come across as the site owner being too aggressive and someone who may not have the customer's best interest at heart. Overwhelming CTAs are also jarring to the whole website surfing experience.

The best approach then is to design a website that has just the right amount of calls-to-action. One prominent button per important page is enough. If the landing page is extremely long, then add 2-3 more but make sure to maintain a good balance. Also, mind the language you're using on your CTAs. Again, avoid being too aggressive and in your face about it.

Not Mobile Friendly

According to statistics, the number of smartphone users across the globe this 2020 has reached 6.95 billion people. This is forecasted to increase to 7.1 billion in 2021 and a whopping 7.41 billion users by the time 2024 comes around.

If we take a look at the US alone (based on the data is published by Oberlo, a dropshipping course company), 48.39% of website visitors access the internet on their mobile phones as of October 2020. Ten years ago, online visitors who use their mobile to visit websites were only at 3.81%. The soaring preference for using smartphones when it comes to surfing the internet cannot be overlooked in modern digital marketing strategies.

To capitalize on this huge pool of visitors, it is imperative that you design a website that is mobile-friendly. In fact, there is now what is called a mobile-first approach and not taking this seriously is definitely one of the web design mistakes any site owner cannot afford to make.

Pages Load So Slow

When it comes to website design, page load time is a major consideration. This affects search engine optimization and user experience. Whether one is accessing the desktop or mobile version of your site, each page must load quickly to prevent visitors from getting frustrated and leaving.

How important is this exactly? 70% of consumers' likeliness to buy is affected by a page's loading time. Most visitors will also form their judgment on a website within 0.5 seconds of opening it. If a page takes more than 3 seconds to fully display everything, around 57% of visitors will leave. Considering these benchmarks, a fast website is crucial!

The ideal page load time for regular websites and e-commerce sites is less than two seconds. To achieve this, do not bloat your website design with heavy graphics and videos. This is not to say that you cannot use these media, but make sure they are processed to be lightweight before incorporation.

Jarring Color Combos

People are visual creatures and one of the website design mistakes that many site owners and developers commit is not taking this into careful consideration. It is best that you work with a graphic designer and a developer to decide upon the best color combinations for your website. The hues should not be jarring or overwhelming and should convey your brand message in a confident and appealing manner.

Overuse of Animation

Past website design tenets recommend the use of animations to catch users' attention. Moving images can still be used today but in moderation. Minimalism is key. Too much and you will turn off your visitors.

White Space Not Employed Properly

White space looks good, doesn't it?

This ties to the two common web design mistakes directly above. It's all about visual impact. People these days prefer minimal, clean, and modern designs. Clutter and disorganization have always been disdained upon.

To successfully catch visitors' eyes without making your website look cringey, white space needs to be employed properly. Effective use of white space involves improving the legibility and spacing of texts, keeping images and other media on the down-low but impactful side, creating focus and emphasis, and structuring your content.

White space also refers to negative space, so your website does not need to be always white! You can, of course, use your brand colors provided that there is enough negative space to create that modern, luxurious, and professional feel.

Annoying Pop-Ups

Pop-ups have their place in site development and design. But, again, too much is not ideal.

Use them sparingly to capture email leads and subscribers. Want to announce surprises or promotions? The occasional pop-up or two can be beneficial. However, if there is one on every page or if one shows up during weird timings, then this will just detract from the user experience.

The idea is to not annoy your customers!

Lack of Fresh Content

Not updating your site's content regularly is yet another mistake you should stay away from.

Regular addition of useful text and other media will help your website stay fresh and relevant. It will increase the chances of ranking high on major search results as well. This will also boost the legitimacy and trustworthiness of a site in the eyes of its visitors.

No Social Media Links

Consumers of today prefer a more personalized connection with the brands they deal with. And they want to have that quickly and easily. That is why they tend to interact with brands on Facebook, Instagram, and similar platforms rather than call, fill up forms or send emails. So it is important that your website has links or buttons to your social media profiles. Don't forget to connect with your customers there!

Unclear Brand Message

Last but not the least, ensure that your brand's message is clearly conveyed through the text, photos, and videos you upload on your site. Take care not to confuse your customers or give them a false impression.

Designing an Awesome Website

Designing an amazing website requires careful thought and thorough planning. Do take note of all the mistakes to avoid listed above and remedy any insufficiency you find.

To help make the whole process easier for you, consider working with a professional website design and development company.

WebriQ Goes Mad is ready to help. We are a team of capable and creative individuals with years of experience in a wide range of website design and digital marketing technologies. You can enjoy no upfront costs, unlimited updates and design changes, and unlimited support.

Get in touch with us and let us create an awesome business website that engages, ranks, and converts!