Top 10 Small Business Website Mistakes
We’ve seen all sorts of small business website errors, mistakes and issues over the years.
We offer advice to our clients about their websites so they can avoid mistakes and make the most of their website. Hopefully, this list will help your business.
Most of the mistakes fall into two main areas – user experience & website performance for the business.
A. User Experience Website Mistakes
If you are unfamiliar with user experience (or “UX” in the industry jargon) it’s what Google has been preaching for the past decade or so, and maybe longer. Google wants people who visit your website to have a positive experience. If they do, Google rewards you with a better position in the search results. If there is not a positive experience, then there’s no reward and if it’s bad enough, may even incur a penalty!
Here are some of the top user experience problems:
1. Poor website design. The object of website design should be to help people find what they need and get it to them with the least amount of difficulty or searching. Organizing the content should be the top priority of a website design. How can you tell if this is a problem? You ‘ll need to look at the statistics for time spent on the website per session, the average number of page views, and the bounce rate (rejection rate).
2. No Mobile Version. In most cases, one-third to one-half of the people visiting your website use a mobile device. That number is expected to grow, not shrink, so if your website is the same on a phone as it is on a desktop computer, then you are losing business. Navigation links are too small to click. The font is too small to read. The experience is frustrating and likely to be abandoned for a website that delivers what they want and is easy to navigate.
3. Broken Links. If your website has broken links, then whatever people expected when that link was clicked is not available, resulting in a disappointed and frustrated website visitor. Any business that causes frustration and disappointment has to overcome that to earn a new customer. You probably won’t get the chance.
4. Slow Downloading. If your website takes forever to show up on a screen, there’s a great chance that people abandoned your site before they even saw it. No one wants to wait, people want instant results when they click a link. Amazon and Wal-Mart both devote a lot of resources to this. A one-second improvement means millions to their bottom line. Small businesses are not exempt. Every second of download speed is estimated to cause about a 10% loss in visitors to your website.
5. Features That Don’t Work. Have you ever filled out a form that failed to send, or you had to fill in something else but it wiped out everything you wrote? Have you ever clicked on a link that would start a download and nothing happens? Almost everyone will completely abandon a website that has one non-functioning feature.
Website Performance Mistakes
6. No Credibility. Your business may be well known in a community. You may be accredited by BBB or a member of the Chamber of Commerce. You may have done a lot of community volunteer work. No one viewing your website would know any of that if you don’t tell them. Add things to your website that allow visitors to your website know that you are a real company. There’s no personal meeting, so
7. No Call To Action (CTA). There must be a reason your business has a website. Sales leads? Sales? Information exchange? Whatever the reason, your site will accomplish much more if it asks website visitors to take a particular action.
8. No Metrics. Google Analytics is free and can be installed quickly and easily. It provides more insight into the behavior of website visitors than would ever be used by most businesses. Analytics offers valuable information about how you can make your website better and more effective.
9. Not Secure. If your website doesn’t receive regular updates to the website framework, the plugins, and the database, as well as regular backups then there might be a security risk. The average website hack costs businesses almost $9,000. It is more common than most people think and can mostly be prevented by keeping things updated and having a backup ready to install at a moment’s notice.
10. No Contact Info. Many websites try to be cute or edgy and display their contact information in ways that are difficult to find as a result. This is the one thing that if you were to do it like everyone else, it would be a benefit. Put the contact info in the footer of each page. You won’t regret it.