Are You Making These 5 Common Website Mistakes

As a website owner you’ll want to do everything in your power to ensure your website is doing as much as it can to convert new visitors into subscribers and potential customers. A lot of websites try to do too much and as a result they end up doing nothing at all. Your website should be elegant, purposeful, and directed towards your core group of users.

It’s easy to make mistakes. We all do. However, some common website mistakes are avoidable, or can be fixed with a little more hard work. In this we’re going to explore the five most common website mistakes a lot of website owners make.


1. Lack Of Direction And No Coherent Focus

I’m sure you’ve been to websites in the past that are very confusing and leave you in a frazzled state. On a sad note, most of the web is like this and it leads to information overwhelm and downright confusion. Our minds aren’t meant for the dizzying pace of the web and a lot of websites actually make this worse.

There are many ways to do this, but some of the most common mistakes include:

  • Weird or cluttered navigation
  • A site that aims to please everyone in the world
  • Strange color scheme
  • No coherent direction or sequence of steps for the user to take
  • Design that is out of alignment with the message of the company

When a person lands on your website you’ll want them to be able to determine, in a matter of seconds, if you’re going to be able to help them or not. This is done through purposeful design and an understanding of who your customer actually is.

Nailing down your focus has to do with simplifying your offering as a business and communicating it in a simple manner to your core group of customers. When in doubt choose one element to be the highlight of your business and do it well.


2. Too Much Focus On The Company, Not The User

No one wants to land on your website and hear about how great your business is, at least not at first. The first thing a person landing on your website wants to know is if you can help them.
Once they’ve determined you can help them reach the magical land where their problem is solved, then they’ll start to look deeper into your company. However, this can still be done strategically to make sure you’re not bragging.

The number one page people go to after the home page is the about page. This means you have another chance to convince the visitor you’re the right person for the job.

The best way to do this is by adjusting your copy to show you deeply sympathize with the user and their problem. Next, make sure to bring in relevant experience that shows you actually know what you’re talking about. You can even bring in testimonials and other forms of social proof, so people know they’re not alone in working with you.


3. No Incentives To Draw In Customers

A lot of website owners try to get people to opt-in without providing an incentive to do so. As inboxes are becoming more and more sacred you’ll need to do something special for the visitor to get them to part with their information.

One of the best ways to do this is by creating a free download that solves a portion of the visitors problem. This should be enough to get the visitor to opt in. From that point on you can work on building the relationship and converting them into a long-term customer.


4. Looking Good Across One Device And One Device Only

Mobile is becoming more and more prevalent. It isn’t going anywhere. All trends and statistics suggest that mobile is the future. It’s a smart idea to make sure your website works across every device your customers are going to be using.

That doesn’t mean you have to upgrade your design right away, but if your website looks funky or doesn’t function properly across the most common screen sizes then you may want to consider a change.
Responsive websites are slowly becoming the new norm, so it would be a good idea to switch over sooner rather than later.


5. No Relevance

Relevance has to do with how valuable you are to your visitors. This is the test your should be running for every element of your website.

If it doesn’t provide value to your readers, then cut it. Being ruthless with what’s useful and what isn’t may feel a little harsh, but it will allow you to have a website that’s more streamlined to serve your customers.


Bonus: Using an Unreliable Hosting Provider

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Kevin Wood writes about technology and human potential. You can find him at his virtual homes Wooden Writing and Counter Culturist.