One of the main objectives of your website design is to grab and retain the attention of your visitors. If people leave your website after just a few seconds the chances are that something is wrong. It could be one of the following ‘own goals’ things you should try and avoid on your company website:
Complex Navigation structure
Nothing irritates a user more than having to work hard to find what they are looking for within your website. Try, wherever possible to stick to the ‘one-click rule’ i.e. your visitors should be able to go from any page in your website to any other page in your website in just one click. Can they do this on your website?
Dead or Misleading links
Another annoying and frustrating web user experience is clicking on a link in a website only to find that either the link is dead or it takes you to a page with content totally different from what you expected!
If your website contains links to other websites you should check to see the links are still working from time to time – just in case the other website has changed. Another tip with links is to make sure all links to external websites open as pop-ups so that your website remains in the background and is not hijacked.
How easy can your content be read?
Some fonts are better suited to the web than others. A popular font used by UK businesses in letter writing is Times New Roman, but this is not great on a website – go for something like ‘Verdana’ which is much easier to read.
Also consider the colour of your text against the page background – it is surprising how many websites use light grey text on a white background – very difficult to be read easily
Sound – or is it just noise?
Having Videos, Audio files or podcasts that open automatically is another issue that seems to really annoy web users. It is much more considerate for your visitor to be left to open these files when they wish to hear them. Bear in mind that many people will access the internet whilst they are at work and it may be inappropriate, or even ‘against the rules’ for music to be heard in their workplace.
Pop-ups on your own website
Three words – don’t do it! It is extremely irritating and old fashioned to have to close each browser window that people visit.
We will continue our review of the pitfalls you need to avoid in your website design in our next post.
If you would like a professional analysis of how effective your website is both from a user and a search visibility point of view please leave a comment below or visit GB Web Marketing – Internet Marketing Services for UK Businesses.