Bad website design drives customers away. Whether it's slow loading times, outdated design, or just a lack of direction for your customers and clients, poor web design no matter the cause will drive people - and sales - away.
Below are 6 things that could be driving customers away from your site (or: 6 signs you might need to update your web design!)
1. Slow Loading Times
People don't like waiting a long time for website to load. More than that, people won't wait for slow websites to load anymore.
If your website takes more than a few seconds to load in there's a good chance people will click back to the search engine and go to one of your competitors instead. Worse, after about 5 seconds, the chance of this grows exponentially for every second afterwards.
2. Non-Responsive Web Design
The amount of people browsing on mobile devices is increasing every year. If your website doesn't incorporate responsive design, you will be losing customers.
Not just through visitors to your site getting frustrated at having to zoom in and out, or constantly swipe to be able to see all of your sites content, but also through the search engine algorithm which has begun to rank mobile usability (responsive design) as a requirement for your website to be ranked highly.
3. Complicated Navigation
Having a complicated or overcrowded navigation bar will frustrate your customers. They are on your site to solve a problem of theirs, not to create new ones by not being able to navigate the resources they need.
Having a simple design with every key page no deeper than 3 clicks from any page that a visitor may land on should be the goal for your websites navigation.
4. No Call To Actions (CTAs)
CTAs are how you encourage visitors to your site to engage whatever step you want them to. Commonly, these are "contact" or "show now" buttons that may be included in your primary navigation bar, but you may also have recommended links to other articles at the end of a post, encouraging people to read on.
These are examples of how CTAs can both navigate people to key areas of your site as well as encourage them to spend more time engaging with your website.
Clearly, they are very powerful tools in directing, but also motivating your customers.
5. Outdated Web Design
Outdated design isn't nice to look at, fun to use, nor does it inspire much trust in the level of quality of the service or products a person might be wanting.
Although this may seen like a superficial factor, it has been shown that many people will simply click away from outdated sites, regardless of the quality of the content, load time, navigation layout, anything.
All the things that we know are more likely to make your audience stick around or turn visitors into customers don't matter if the base level of web design just isn't there.
A modern website design is absolutely a requirement for gaining new customers. (Note: "modern" doesn't mean trendy or gimmicky, a minimalist, professional design works just as well - if not better - than overdesigned sites.)
6. Thin or Poor-Quality Content
Finally, if people don't know who you are as a business, they aren't going to trust you enough to actually make a purchase.
Although it lacks the first impact that web design punches when it comes to drawing people in, good quality content written to connect with your audience is the most powerful tool in creating a connection with your potential customers that begins nurturing them into loyal clients or customers.
On top of that, thin content - or heavily repeating content - hurts your search engine rankings by making the algorithm question the authenticity or usefulness of your website to searchers.
If you want to make sure your potential customers aren't being driven to your competitors before they have even seen your site, then having, rich and meaningful content is a must
If your current website is making any of these mistakes, it is definitely time for an update or maybe even a redesign.