The 7 Deadly Sins of Web Design:
Let’s face it, website conversion should be the end game of every website. The basic purpose of a website is to have the page convert into a sale or a contact from a potential client. Almost daily I am confronted with a website that didn’t include ways for the end user, the visitor, to interact and upset website owner wondering why their web designer didn’t consider this.
Some tips to consider when setting up a website are:
#1- Phone Number – Don’t hide it. Don’t make people dig for it. Put it in the header of your page design in a contrasting color so it stands out. Make the font size larger so that it stands out and try to add a shadowing to give the number depth.
#2 – Create a Path for Contact – Make sure people have an easy way to contact you and clearly explain what you want them to do. If you want them to fill out a form, use words people understand, like ‘request information’. Avoid labels like the word ‘submit’.
#3- Don’t Send Mixed Messages – Make sure your page matches what your keywords are and clearly tell the user what you do. If you’re a staffing agency, say “We provide staffing”. Slogans saying, “We grow businesses” does not let the end user know what you do and sends a mixed message.
#4 – The More Clicks the Worse the Conversion – Don’t make your user have to navigate through your site to find what they want. The more they have to navigate through the site, the less likely they are to engage you. The only people that will read your whole website are engineers.
#5 – Lose the Gimmicks – Gimmicks make for a lot of problems. Flash doesn’t work on an iPad. That’s a big deal with the explosion of tablets. Don’t let your developer talk you into some slick shiny moving object. It gets old quickly and leaves part of our audience on the sidelines.
#6 – Pay Close Attention to your Images – They say a picture is worth 1000 words, but yet in the world of the websites they are so frequently used improperly. One of the biggest mistakes is the use of the wrong image on your website. This is a mistake that I see companies big and small make. If you sell electricity, why would you have people working on their income tax? If you’re staffing, why would you put up images of light bulbs? I see this mistake so frequently. Stock images of people that don’t mimic the tone of your company are another huge issue. If you’re a tech firm, do you walk around in suits and ties or Converse? People who choose to contact you off your website already have a visual. Converse and shorts are not interchangeable.
#7 – The 8 Second Rule – No I’m not talking about bull riding. What I am talking about is you have 8 seconds to capture that user. Make sure your message is clear and there are proper visual clues that will capture the user. The use of the color red and green when used properly tell the user what to do. The use of bold fonts allows the user to scan the work and get a gist of the page without reading it. Clear navigation gives the user an idea of where to go. And always make sure the message on the page matches what the user is expecting.