So Many Sites…So Little Time
There are billions of websites online these days, with over 500,000 new websites popping up every day, the competition is fierce. With that in mind, it is vital that once your target audience starts visiting your website that you give them a good reason to stay! Sadly, converting website visitors into leads is no longer as simple as ‘build a website and they will come’. Times have changed.
Studies show that 53% of users will leave a website if it fails to load within 3 seconds! The bottom line is, the average internet user is impatient and has high standards- with so many different online options available, it’s not enough that your website is merely functional. In order to be successful, a website needs to be accessible, trustworthy and engaging.
Aside from slow loading times, users have reported website design as being a major contributing factor as to whether or not they felt uneasy using a website. Users are more likely to consider a website untrustworthy for several reasons, including:
- If it is too cluttered
- If the checkout pages seem outdated or hastily made; and
- If the design itself is outdated (think websites from the early 2000’s).
A website acts like a company’s front page, so when it’s poorly designed or seems untrustworthy, users are more likely to believe the company and its employees are inexperienced and unprofessional.
(If you think your website design might be scaring off your customers, you can chat to Web 105 today and we’ll be able to help you out!)
Another trap businesses fall into with their websites is too many ads and pop-ups. It’s like clearing away piles and piles of junk mail from your letterbox when really all you want is to collect your post. Auto-play videos, incessant pop-ups, urgent messages demanding we ‘subscribe, sign up, get 10% off’ can be really irritating after a while, particularly when they all appear on your front page at the same time.
Carefully placed ads certainly have their place on your website, but overwhelm a user with e-marketing and they’ll probably leave your website in search of less ad saturated pastures.
Something else that will drive potential customers away is a poorly laid out navigation structure. Whether you have too many navigation options or not enough, failing to strike the correct balance will leave your users lost, confused and unlikely to go back to your website any time soon.
When designing your navigation structure, there are a few things you can focus on. Firstly, use key descriptive words like ‘services’ or ‘products’. These descriptive words provide enough information to the user to take them where they want to go and avoid unnecessary details.
Secondly, avoid having a drop down menu with too many options, as can be problematic and overwhelming for the user. Have you ever used a website where you click the drop down menu and suddenly 46 different options appear?
It’s busy, confusing and you might not even know for sure what you’re looking for! Being presented with so many different options makes you feel even more uncertain. Do you want 3/4 pants or cropped pants? Planet Friendly? So many options. Better to get out of there quickly and try your favourite online haunts instead.
Something else to consider when trying to keep your website visitors around is whether or not your site has any personality. Flat and almost faceless websites do exist and they’re so painfully boring to navigate, lots of users only find themselves using them when they absolutely have to (insurance companies anyone?)
Granted, no one is browsing an insurance company website for fun, but just because your website is representing a company that isn’t the most exciting in the world, it doesn’t mean the site itself should lack personality. When website copy seems it could have been written by anyone and there’s no real expression of brand identity or personality, visitors are less likely to trust it.
This is where small businesses or NFP’s tend to excel, because it’s easier to express a brand story or company mission through website copy and design. If you can create a brand identity that people understand and resonate with, they’re more likely to support it, because it feels human.
Overall, it is a combination of various web building elements that determine whether or not visitors will stay on your website, but mostly, check your website loading time. If it’s too slow, it’s not gonna grow! Often, getting help from the experts can help get you back on track and have your website generating the leads you deserve.
If you’re not sure where you might be going wrong, or you think your website can be improved upon, talk to Web 105 Creative today and we’ll help optimise your site. Whether you’re a small business, a not-for-profit charity, or a large corporation looking for an e-overhaul, we’re here to help!