7 Web Design Mistakes That Hurt User Experience
Nowadays, just having a website isn’t enough. You need to create an ideal website. You need to outpace your competition.
Amateur web developers can create good-looking sites. Yet, that doesn’t matter if your site serves up a bad user experience. Your customers want easy navigation on your website. Inexperienced developers and marketers may make errors which will cost you time and money. This article shares seven things you should keep in mind while developing a website — whether you hire someone or do it yourself.
#1. Never Forget to Link Your Homepage From Your Logo.
The reason is pretty simple; would you like to revisit a website if it has poor navigation? Users expect to reach your homepage when they click on your logo. New traffic that comes to your website wishes to get their required information instantly. Your homepage is the gateway to the rest of your site. It leads to your blog, your contact page, and other vital pages. When someone is lost on your site, they want to get to your homepage. Visitors expect clicking on your logo will take them there.
Users are impatient. People will leave your website even if it’s 0.25 seconds too slow. Imagine the frustration people will have if they get lost on your site. Don’t let that happen. Your logo should always redirect to the homepage.
#2. Excessive Use of Videos on the Homepage.
Some marketers and web designers think that more is better. Sometimes it isn’t. Excessive use of videos on your homepage will damage your brand. The first drawback is they will occupy a lot of space in your database. That means slower website speeds for users.
Would you visit a website that takes 25 seconds to load? It’s unlikely. People leave websites that have 1/100 of that delay. Videos, which are data hogs, can cripple a website, slowing them down to glacial speeds. Even in moderation, they can still cause damage. Always run a speed test on your site, making sure it’s crisp.
#3. Preferring Graphics Over Text.
You have created a website. One of your goals is to get your website high in the search rankings. You want a beautiful website, and a rock-solid SEO strategy. Well, one design pitfall is using graphics instead of text on your website. Google crawlers can only scan written text. If your homepage is full of graphics, Google probably doesn’t know what your site is about. If Google doesn’t know what your site is about, then you can’t rank on the first page. Your website is about more than looks; it starts with SEO. Use the Yoast plugin on your WordPress site to analyze your SEO.
#4. Too Much Use of Stock Images.
Using stock images for your blog will not directly impact your SEO. Yet, it’s still a mistake that can cost you money. Using images that you bought or made is the soundest tactic. You have a lot of options here. You can take pictures of your products by yourself. Or you can also pay a pro to work as a photographer for you.
If you are using stock images to represent your site, then there is a chance of a copyright claim from another party. Also, your website appears more professional when you use custom images. It’s just like using a logo; it exudes professionalism. People can instinctively tell the differences between stock images and custom images. Yet, sometimes you may be in a pinch. If you are, consider a high-quality site like Pixabay.
#5. Not Focusing on the Responsiveness of the Website.
Web developers have hammered this point home over the last few years. Still, this is where immature web developers fall into a trap. According to Impactbnd, over 80% of internet users in the U.S. own a smartphone. Websites that aren’t fully responsive will destroy your sales. Imagine if your website is not mobile friendly? Do you really think that people will come back to your blog or website after their bad experience on mobile? If they have a bad experience on mobile, they’re probably not giving you another chance on desktop. You’ve just lost a customer and future revenue.
Google puts mobile-friendliness as a requirement for their searches. As you may know, Google has different search results for mobile and desktop. Well, having a poor mobile experience can hurt your search rankings for desktop as well as mobile.
#6. Avoid Automated Audio Pop-Ups.
Suppose you visit a website for the first time. You like the design, and you feel good about the site. Then, just after the website opens, automated audio starts playing and you don’t know how to pause it. That’s really irritating.
Audio pop-ups distract the attention of users. People don’t like them. User experience is not the only drawback. These kinds of popups affect a website’s loading speed. It doesn’t take a lot to make a difference. Remember, people were irritated by a mere 0.25 second delay. Every millisecond counts.
#7. You’re Not Using Social Media Icons.
The value of your social media pages depends on how many people you’re connected with. How will your Facebook Live streams get any views if you don’t advertise your page? How will you get re-tweets if people don’t know what handle they can follow you at? Social media is social. You need to constantly engage fans if want the best chance at a solid ROI.
Your website should promote your social pages, and your social pages should promote your website. Use icons in the header and footer, so the people who want to connect with you can do so easily. Additionally, you aren’t pushing your accounts on people who aren’t interested now. You can turn people who have a favorable impression of you into engaged fans via social media.
It Always Comes Back to User Experience.
The more time your audience spends on your website, the more revenue you’ll generate. Design mistakes snowball. As a web designer, you want a high SEO ranking. Google likes websites that people stay on for a long time. If you have a high bounce rate, Google will punish you when it comes to search rankings. That means less people will find your website, and you’ll miss out on more potential revenue. Follow the tips above to make an environment your customers will enjoy.
Ben Shepardson is the founder of NoStop Content, a boutique writing agency focusing on helping small business clients take their websites to the next level. From social media topics to articles on niche industry issues, NoStop's articles are written with style, attention to detail, and with the client's audience in mind.Read Full Bio