5 Web Design Mistakes Killing Your Website Traffic

November 30, 2021
Spencer Gallant

These common web design mistakes can be hurting your efforts to generate traffic and bring customers through the door.

As a business owner, you know that you need to have an amazing website to generate traffic and bring customers through the door. However, sometimes your design can be hurting your efforts instead of helping them. In this blog post, we'll cover 5 common web design mistakes that are killing your website traffic.

1. Lack of a clear and concise call to action

Having a call to action on your website is crucial if you want to convert visitors into customers. On a landing page, people should know exactly what they need to do next to get the results they're looking for.

When you design your site, make sure that you include a clear and concise call to action above the fold (the part of the page that someone sees before having to scroll down). And since you want people to go ahead take the action you are asking for, your call-to-action must be clear and concise.

For example, instead of simply having a button on your site that says "Click Here" have one saying something along the lines of "Shop Now." You'll find this will increase conversions because users know exactly what they need to do to get the results they want.

2. Too many links on the homepage

Having too many links on your website is a big mistake when it comes to SEO and overall usability. Luckily there are some simple ways you can cut back without losing out completely:

  • Use your navigation bar. Having a navbar or sidebar with links to the different sections of your site will help you cut back on having too much internal linking (linking within your own website). You'll still get the same amount of traffic, but it will be more targeted and people won't have trouble finding what they're looking for
  • Use your footer. Your footer is the perfect place for links that you don't want to put in your navigation bar, but still want people to be able to find easily. For example, if each of the products on your site has its own page with lots of information about it (like description and customer reviews), consider putting all of the links to these pages in your footer.
  • Use call-to-action buttons for external websites. When you include calls to action that are directing people outside of your website, try not to have too many on the page at once or it will look spammy and users won't know which one they should click first.

The key to good web design is knowing what you want your user’s experience to be like. The most successful websites are the ones that don't confuse their visitors but instead guide them through a simple process of completing predetermined goals or tasks.

3. Slow loading time

Having a slow loading time is one of the biggest causes of high bounce rates on your website. When you have pages that take too long to load, people are more likely to abandon them and go somewhere else where they can get what they want faster (like Google).

There are some simple ways you can make sure your site loads quickly:  

  • Make sure you have a fast hosting service. If your site is hosted on an online server that has many users, it will take longer for people to load because there are more people in front of them. Make sure the website speed test score on this page (or any other speed tests) isn't too low before continuing
  • Optimize your homepage. This is especially important because people often land on it when they first come to your website and want something fast that will give them what they're looking for right away, one of the things to keep in mind is your FCP (First Contentful Paint), as this measures how long it takes on average to let the user see something load and change on your page. If it's too slow, people will leave before your site even loads and go somewhere else where they can get what they want faster. Google has a free tool to check out this metric and other insights at PageSpeed Insights.
  • Use lightweight images. This is especially important if you have a lot of images on your site. You can do this by resizing the image to be smaller, using compression tools like Photoshop or Gimp (or online compressors, we use Optimizilla), and even choosing different file types.
  • Optimize CSS and Javascript. If you are using any plugins for Javascript or CSS on your website, make sure they are lightweight and optimized for speed. You can do this by using plugins specifically built for speed optimization or looking through the code yourself to see if there are ways you could make them lighter.

If you want to make sure that your site loads quickly and doesn't have a high bounce rate, these are some simple things you can do--and remember that all these changes will also impact how well your website ranks!

4. Not using enough photos or videos on your site

If you're not using any photos or videos on your website, it's an instant turn-off for customers. Not only does a giant wall of text look unappealing to read through, but photos and videos are also generally engaging content that keeps them coming back and sharing with their friends.

Photos and videos are the best way to get people engaged with what you have to say on your site because they can convey so much more than words alone ever could. There are several ways you can incorporate photos into your website:

  • Use them as backgrounds. If they fit the theme of your site, using a bright or interesting photo as the background for each page will give it that extra touch to make people want to stay and click around more.
  • Feature customer testimonials with photos next to them. A great way to make people trust your company is by showing them how happy (or not) your customers are with the service you provide. If they like it, then there's a good chance that others will too and want to come on board
  • Feature photos of employees or owners in action. This one works best if you sell something physical that you can show people what it is like to use, such as a product or service. For example, if someone were selling an exercise program, they could include photos of them exercising and working out at the gym so that customers know exactly how much effort goes into using this type of training plan
  • Include videos on your website: Videos are great because they show a real person in action and can be more convincing than just words alone.

If you want to get people excited about what you have to offer, then adding photos or videos is an effective way of doing that because it gives them something memorable when they visit your website and makes them more likely to come back and buy from you.

5. Not optimizing for mobile users

If you haven't already made your website mobile-friendly, then this is one of the biggest web design mistakes that are killing your traffic.

It's no longer acceptable to have a site that doesn't automatically resize and move depending on what device someone is using because it means they won't be able to see everything clearly or interact with everything that you have to offer. When users have to pinch and zoom in and out to see what you have on your site, it's a huge source of frustration and it makes them want to leave as quickly as possible.

This is one of the most common web design mistakes that are killing your traffic because so many people don't even bother taking the time to optimize their website for mobile users. It isn't as hard as you might think to do, and it can be the difference between having a successful website or one that doesn't work (at least for over half of your customers).

By making your site work just as well, if not better than a regular desktop version, you'll be able to keep increasing traffic from those searching for things online--and that will help grow your business.

As a business owner, you know that you need to have an amazing website to generate traffic and bring customers through the door. However, sometimes your design can be hurting your efforts instead of helping them. Now that you know what these mistakes are, we recommend taking the time to fix them.  

We hope this blog post helps give you some ideas on what to avoid when it comes to web design! If you're interested in learning more, or you would like a free consultation on how to optimize your website for more traffic, then contact us today!

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