So – You’ve got your business up and running.
Your product or service is cream of the freakin’ crop!
You always deliver on time. And people would be out of their minds not to order from you.
Or at least they would be crazy if it wasn’t for your website!
You’re not sure if it’s the content, the colour palette, or just the general business website design that’s the issue. But people are landing on your site and then running for the hills without so much as a half-hearted “Call me!”.
Or maybe that’s not you. Maybe you’re here because you know that 93 percent of US adults use the internet and you don’t want to make any client-losing website design mistakes.
Whether your site has been around for a while or you’re new to this whole web design thing, we’ve compiled a list of six common issues that we often see with websites.
We’ll tell you what they are and how to fix your website. Sound good? Keep reading.
Table of Contents
1. Your Website is Too Clunky
You know how every time there’s a new Star Wars movie out there are fans lining up for blocks, waiting in shifts, and saying things like, “We’ll watch this on opening night no matter what!” from behind their Darth Vader masks?
The movie theater can afford to have a sticky ticket machine that adds an extra 10 seconds to every transaction. Your website? Not so much.
Most of the time, you can’t get 9 out of 10 random people to agree on anything.
Except, apparently, about when’s the best time to start ditching websites that take too long to load.
Take some time to visit your website from a few different browsers and a few different devices. Get your friends and family in on the act.
If everyone’s answer to the question, “Is my site too slow?” is “Yep!”, then you know that the issue is potentially on your end. And from there, it’s time to do some troubleshooting.
Do you need DDOS protection? Are you using plugins that don’t play nicely with each other? While you’re engaged in this analysis, you’ll also want to make sure that the loading problems don’t extend to mobile — or worse, are mobile-exclusive.
2. Your Website is Outdated
If mullets, Elvis Presley wigs, and the Space Jam website have taught us anything, it’s that things that seem cutting edge and trendy can quickly make you look like a has-been. Sometimes even within the same decade. That’s why we’ve said before that if your site looks outdated, you may need a redesign.
At the end of the day, modern digital audiences are becoming more and more sophisticated. They have standards and expectations when it comes to business websites.
If a site doesn’t immediately scream “I am a serious professional who is serious about my work!”, many visitors will be reluctant to give their credit card information to what they perceive as a sketchy company.
Don’t let “This company website is hilariously old.” happen to you.
This one might hurt, but you’ll have to spend some time being honest with yourself.
Has it been a while since you built the website? Are you using less-than-flattering photos and amateur lighting? Does your webpage give off the impression that it was designed during the MySpace era even though you built it a couple of years ago?
You may need to take a deep breath, do a “business website design near me” Google search, and start the process of a website redesign.
At BrashBerry, we’ve been at this since 2001. Check out our web design services to find out how we can take your website from outdated to “AWESOME”!
3. You're Not Speaking to Your Ideal Customer
Lots of people will talk up the importance of buyer personas and “speaking to your customers”. But depending on your product, this advice may be easier said than done.
Unless you have a product or service that’s just that niche, your client base could potentially be in the hundreds of thousands, or millions.
BUT, there’s one thing that many businesses forget once the daily grind starts settling in:
Even if the people who need your product or service could be described as “everyone”, not every potential buyer will have the same concerns.
For instance, the coach of your local Little League team might have to deal with angry parents, hungry children, and transporting players. But the issues that folks are dealing with in Little League will look completely different from the problems faced by the head coach of an MLB team.
If you’re selling a product to “coaches”, it’s worth your while to understand who you’re talking to. Otherwise, there’s a good chance that your website just won’t convert as much as you’d like it to.
Maybe instead of selling those handmade soaps to “Everyone who bathes or showers.”, you should be gunning for earth-conscious, artsy types who love the smell of essential oils in the bath.
Or maybe instead of “HVAC services for anyone with a furnace.”, you could help homeowners with older appliances.
Once you have a clear picture of who your buyer is, your website copy should sharpen accordingly.
4. You're Saying Too Much to Your Ideal Customer
Different people can want the same product for totally different reasons.
For instance, a hardcore, never-miss-a-game sports fan might be trying to host the Super Bowl party of the century while a reality TV show fan might be planning a cooking show marathon.
Despite these major differences, however, both of these individuals could theoretically be in the market for the same TV.
Here’s why this matters for your website:
We’ve all been to a party or an event where two people were so focused on each other that they weren’t paying attention to anyone else in the room. So much so that even if you were interested in the conversation, you couldn’t approach the couple without getting strong feelings of “Whoa. It would be pretty awkward to jump in here.”.
If your product or service could potentially work across multiple demographics, you don’t want to be the person who’s laser-focused on one individual while ignoring all the other potential customers around you.
That’s how you lose out on money and clients.
Get clear on the benefits of your product or service.
And then ask yourself the question, “Who would like this?”
You might have a primary demographic in mind already. But the answers you uncover at this stage might nonetheless surprise you.
5. The Important Stuff is Too Many Clicks Away
When you’re trying to optimize your website design, the appearance of the site isn’t the only thing that matters – the user experience has to be considered too. According to SmallBizGenius, 56 percent of people stick with brands that “get them”.
Your website is your opportunity to show people that you understand their needs on a deep, intuitive level.
That’s why the best web design strategies are ones that avoid making people work too hard to find the information they need.
Sit down with several people who aren’t in your industry and have them go through your website.
You’ll need to think of ways to make the important pages more accessible to your users.
6. You Don't Have Trust Markers
In basic terms, a trust marker is a piece of information or a picture that gives potential customers more evidence that you’re capable of delivering what they need.
Freelancing Digest has a whole article on trust markers and their importance. But in essence, trust markers are your ticket to giving people a sense that you’re ultra-capable without having to outright grab them by the shirt collars and yell, “Look at me! I’m amazing!”.
Have you won any awards for your work? Do you have customers gushing over your work and taking to Yelp and Google to share their positive opinions? Are you using a well-known payment processor like PayPal or Visa?
At the end of the day, people want to do business with companies that they can trust. If your website isn’t building trust, you could be leaving major money on the table.
Go through your professional history and look for the highlights. Have you been featured in any news articles or op-eds? Were you mentored by a legend in your industry? Did you help a client double or triple their revenues in a short amount of time?
Here’s your chance to toot your own horn.
Want to Know More About Business Website Design?
As a business owner, you’ve got a lot on your plate.
Between clients, marketing, and any other offline lead generation you do, finding the time to refine your business website design isn’t easy.
We totally get it at BrashBerry.
That’s why we offer help with web design, marketing strategy, and more. Book an appointment with us today!