I never ceased to be amazed by the terrible websites I come across almost daily. And by amazed, I, of course, mean horrified. Consumers have been using the internet regularly since the ’90s, and for some reason, many websites still look like they were built in the ’90s.
I see so many fundamental flaws in websites across industries. You don’t have to be a graphic designer to spot these mistakes. Broken links, long load times, and missing security certificates (https) are just the tip of the iceberg. Here are five fatal flaws that will send your clients running into the arms of your competition.
You made it with Microsoft Paint.
It takes 0.05 seconds for someone to form an opinion about your website. And if your website is full of clip art, clashing colors, or looks like a 14-year-old’s MySpace page, they’re going to use those milliseconds to find the back button and get the heck out of there. If you made your website yourself over five years ago, I can almost guarantee that your clients hate it. Outdated visuals are your first enemy.
I tried creating the new Sklar Technology website myself with a DIY service and quickly learned how difficult it is. There’s a reason web design is a profession. I had our in-house designer take what I created and turn the website into what it is today and I’m very happy with the results. Our site converts leads regularly. There are plenty of DIY resources available for building websites, but if you want a sleek website that will draw clients in, invest in a professional. Cutting corners on your website is a great way to cut down on prospects.
It’s not mobile-friendly.
Come on! It’s 2019. If I can’t read your website clearly on my smartphone or click a phone number and start a call instantly, then I’m probably never going to visit your site again. SimilarWeb, a digital analytics company, found that 58% of website traffic is conducted via mobile device. This means if your website isn’t smartphone- and tablet-friendly, you are missing out on two-thirds of all potential traffic.
If you’re not sure if your website is mobile-friendly, take out your smartphone and check it yourself. Can you easily read the screen? Is the layout easy to navigate? Are the buttons large enough to click on a touchscreen? Does it look good? If not, stop wasting time and look into making your website mobile-friendly right away.
Your blog is a ghost town.
Blogs are a great way to offer value and show prospective clients that you’re an expert in your field. But only if you are keeping that blog updated. When your website blog hasn’t been updated since July 2015, your whole site looks abandoned. If you have a blog, you need to put up new posts at least once a week.
Don’t have time to write blogs? Adapt content from other marketing avenues. Can’t manage the blog yourself? Delegate it to someone on your marketing team. If you can’t do that, then I suggest deleting the blog altogether. No blog is better than an outdated blog. To prospects, seeing an outdated blog causes them to question your competency. If you can’t even update a blog, how are you going to take care of your clients?
You’re marketing to the competition, not your prospects.
Speaking of blogs and content, who are you targeting with your copy? I see so many websites making this mistake, filling their pages with jargon and statistics their clients don’t really care about. For example, construction companies with web pages dedicated to the specs on their equipment — the only people who care about equipment are other construction companies. Clients don’t really care what machines you’re using; they want to know if those machines can get the job done. Make sure your website appeals to potential clients, not your competition.
You have bad stock photos.
I get it. Stock photos are quick and easy. We use them on our blogs sometimes. But you need to be smart about your stock photos. First of all, make sure you are paying for the stock images you use or you’re going to get hit with a steep fine. Second, don’t use stock photos with people who don’t work at your company. Prospects can spot a stock model a mile away. If you want to feature people on your website, bring in a professional photographer. Using your phone to take blurry photos in poor lighting is almost as bad as not having photos at all.
I’ve said many times that your website will not magically convert clients, but a bad website will sure as heck send clients running to the hills.
Want someone to review your website? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. My team can find those bad photos, poor content, broken links, and security flaws before you waste another cent on a website that’s working against you.
Thanks for reading,
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