Having a successful online presence is an important part of just about every business, mainly because an increasing number of consumers are turning to the internet to look for products, services, and different types of information. This requires having a professional website that your target audience can find easily and one that convinces visitors to perform desired actions. As a business owner, you need to ensure that your website is up to the mark, and looking at the top mistakes when creating a business website can help you steer clear of the most common pitfalls.
Once you know of the mistakes to avoid when building a website for your business, you increase the likelihood of succeeding in the online world, which then becomes evident through an increase in revenue.
Despite the potential that the digital landscape has to offer, many businesses still create websites just to mark their online presence. However, a lot of work needs to go into designing and developing a website before it can play any kind of a role in promoting your business. In today’s world, having a bad website is worse than not having one at all. This is because a website that visitors do not appreciate will hurt the reputation of your business more than the absence of one.
Here are the most common web design mistakes to avoid when creating a business website.
Table Of Contents
1. Creating a Non-Mobile-Friendly Website
According to numbers released by Statista, more people use mobile devices to access the internet than those who use desktops and laptops. This serves as a clear indication that every website should cater to mobile users. It is also more likely that mobile users will visit businesses near them after they carry out relevant online searches.
Despite statistics that highlight the growth of mobile internet users, many business websites are not mobile-friendly, which means they eliminate mobile users from the picture. This can be a big loss because it’s possible that a significant percentage of their target audience uses mobile phones.
One of the biggest web design mistakes is not keeping up with technology. Now, you no longer need a separate website that is mobile-friendly, what you need instead is responsive web design. This approach ensures that your website provides a good user experience across different devices and screen sizes.
Simply put, a person using a desktop will view a responsive website in pretty much the same way as a mobile phone user. The only difference is that the content adjusts according to the size of the screen. This means all your website’s visitors will have seamless experiences regardless of the devices they use.
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3. Lack of Content Strategy
Not having a suitable content strategy makes it to the list of the biggest mistakes in business websites for good reason. After all, if your website’s visitors can’t find the information they’re looking for, if they find your content outdated, or if your content is not engaging enough, you may expect higher-than-normal bounce rates. This is when visitors leave a webpage without taking any action.
When you create a website for your business, one of the best ways to keep its content fresh is by incorporating a blog. You should use this section to update content often, ideally at least once a month. Remember that people will not visit your website just to look at service pages because they do not change much. With a blog, you can share industry news or your knowledge on certain topics.
Having a content strategy will ensure that when users visit your website again, they find the fresh content informative and useful. Besides, this is a good way to stay relevant in the eyes of search engines. When determining what you should write about, always think of what your audience is interested in, and try to go for long-form content that ranges from 1,500 to 2,000 words. Optimizing your blog posts for search engines is crucial.
4. Providing Thin Content
Thin content basically refers to limited content. For example, if you are a roofing company, the service page needs to be more than the generic kind where you simply list the services on offer. While you need to list all the services, you also need to build on them by having a separate webpage for each.
From the search engine optimization (SEO) perspective, listing your services on a single generic services page makes it hard to create keyword-specific content that finds favor with search engines like Google and Bing. Besides, a page for each service helps visitors find relevant content about the services they seek. If you have no idea what to write, ask yourself a few questions about the service and think of what potential customers might want to know. By creating content between 500 and 1,000 words for each page, you may consider your website good to go.
5. Poor Page Optimization
If you carry out an online search for the top five mistakes when creating a business website, you’ll notice that poor page optimization makes it to most such lists. The good thing is that optimizing your website’s pages is not all that technical. It’s about basic optimization of elements such as page titles and metadata.
For example, your page titles should ideally include the industry your business belongs to and its location. Continuing with the roofing company example, one page title could be “Emergency Roofing Services New York”. The best-ranking websites include their industry and location in their page titles, which highlights the importance of optimizing this element.
Make sure you include target keywords in your content without going overboard, and ensure adding internal links. If you’re writing blog posts, make use of external links as well. When you optimize your website’s pages, they have a better chance of ranking well on search engine results pages (SERPs), which then gives your website more exposure.
6. Slow Page Loading Speed
One of the top web design mistakes to avoid when creating a business website is not paying attention to page loading speed. This is because most web users have access to high-speed internet and they look for websites that load quickly. If a website falters on this front, there’s a very good chance that its visitors will leave and head to a competitor’s website.
Speed is very important, all the more so if you have an eCommerce website or hope to use your website as a marketing tool. Bear in mind that most users will not wait for a slow website when they can find others that load faster.
Another important reason to pay attention to this aspect is the fact that Google includes page loading speed in the ranking elements it considers. As a result, you need to:
- Optimize your website’s code to make it efficient.
- Use solid-state drive (SSD) hosting as it’s much faster than hosting that relies on conventional spinning disks.
- Reduce unnecessary media that might be slowing your website down.
By ensuring that your web pages load quickly or keeping visitors informed about the progress, you can get them to stay on your website for long enough to lead them toward conversion.
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7. Poor CTAs
Having poor calls to action (CTAs) makes it to most lists of the top 10 mistakes in web design. A CTA, after all, serves as an important gateway to conversion, encouraging users to do what you want them to, whether it’s buying a product, getting a coupon, or signing up for a membership. This is why your CTAs should tell your website’s visitors what they need to do and what they may expect in return. For example, an effective CTA could be as simple as a clickable button that says “Get 20% off”. CTAs can also come in the form of clickable links, forms, banners, pop-ups, and slide-ins.
When web design agencies come up with content marketing strategies, they ensure the use of effective CTAs in different places on your website and it’s common to find them on all pages. While creativity plays an important role in coming up with a good CTA, it should ideally be simple and concise, and it should also create a sense of urgency.
8. Ignoring Web Security
The role of website security is crucial not just from the point of view of safeguarding information but also when it comes to building trust. For instance, if your website’s visitors feel that it fails to provide a secure browsing experience, they have every reason to look for an alternative. Addressing website security during the design and development stages requires that you:
- Use Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) instead of Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
- Have strong password requirements
- Require user authentication for accessing sensitive information
- Have a plan for carrying out regular updates and backups
- Have an effective recovery strategy
- Partner with a reliable web hosting company
9. Absence of Contact Information
When it comes to the biggest mistakes in web design, providing inadequate or no contact information about your business is something you need to avoid. For starters, make sure your website has an easy-to-find Contact Us page. It should ideally find a place under the main menu, although you may add it as a sub-category under the About Us section. You should also include it in your website’s footer.
The contact information you need to provide typically includes the official name of your business and its:
- Phone number
- Physical address (with a location map)
- Email address
- Contact form
- Hours of operation
Depending on the type of business you run, you might also choose to provide contact details of different departments or specific employees.
Bear in mind that the Contact Us page is among the most viewed pages of several websites, and providing the right information helps your business look accessible. This, in turn, increases the trust your target audience places in your business.
Online marketing is an important part of most businesses and their websites help represent their brands in the digital landscape. As a result, you should aim to put your best foot forward and your goal should be to meet the needs, wants, and expectations of your target audience. While your website should look good, it should also deliver a great user experience. Only then will it serve its true purpose.
Now that you’ve identified the most common mistakes when creating a business website, make sure you avoid them at all costs. If you don’t have an in-house web design team or if you don’t have the required technical expertise to create a website, partnering with a professional web design company might be in your best interest. This is because your website’s visitors should get to view your business in the best possible light.