If you have recently redesigned your website (or if you have never redesigned your website since it’s creation in 1998) – you may be noticing that your audience is bouncing more frequently than they used to. Here are ways that your website may be driving customers away.
Your Website is Slow
With high-speed internet becoming more the norm across the world and attention spans dropping quickly, websites with excessive load times simply will not see success. According to some studies, 40% of people abandon a website that takes more than three seconds to load, and a mere one-second delay in a page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions. A slow website dramatically hinders your business’s opportunities for success.
There may be several factors that affect your website loading speed. For example, large animations or multiple pop-ups can slow down your website. Alternatively, you may need to reevaluate whether your caching technologies (or lack thereof) are worsening the user experience on your website. Finally, talking to the sever host may help identify any issues so you can increase your site speed.
Insulting and Obnoxious Pop-Up Ads
Nobody likes being treated like an idiot. Instead of trying to cater to the lowest common denominator or using passive-aggressive tactics (like the “no, I hate saving money” option instead of a simple “no, thanks!”) leaves users with a poor taste in their mouth and a bad impression of your business. Disruptive ads can leave visitors feeling so irritated that they immediately close out of your website. In fact, one study shows that 80% of people have immediately exited a web site after being assaulted by an unwelcome pop-up ad.
There are ways to make pop-up ads less intrusive and obnoxious, and done correctly, they can even lead to conversions and be a powerful driver for success. But remember – it is very easy to make a bad pop-up ad, so proceed with caution.
Simply put, sensory overload occurs when too much is going on for the brain to process. The overstimulation can cause people to shut down. In a world where overstimulation is a more and more frequent phenomenon, it is important that the user experience on your website does not contribute to that sensory overload. Sensory overload can manifest in different ways on your website.
Using too much animation – whether in quantity or in style (the only business that might need strobe light animation is a business selling, well, strobe lights) – can distract and confuse your potential customers.
Too Many Design Elements
Perhaps you were hoping to service as many senses as possible with your creative web design schematic: you input music that suits the “vibe” your brand or business is aiming for, you set a video to immediately auto-play a brief ad about your newest products, and you have an animated feature (like a pop-up ad or a unique cursor). While these elements might be fine on their own, when placing them altogether on one web page, it can leave a user feeling like they have entered a chaotic environment. The fact is, too many design elements contribute to sensory overload and may steer customers away from your website.
Keep it simple and try to keep animated or interactive elements to one or two per page. Keep only the design elements that are essential to communicate your message. As a bonus, doing so will help reduce the loading time of your website and improve the user experience.
A user-friendly interface that is mindful of your entire audience is key to a well-designed website. Unfortunately, many websites these days are inaccessible in one way or another. Some design elements on desktop do not translate well to mobile. Some font styles and color schemes – think red and blue, for example – should be avoided to make sure those with visual impairments can still enjoy your website.
Your content should be easily accessible by your audience. If your audience is having difficulty finding key elements like product specifications and contact information, the lack of transparency may leave them wondering if your business is at all legitimate. Make sure that you have an effective, integrated site search so that your potential customers can immediately jump to the information that is important to them. Customers should be able to refine their searches where appropriate.
Transparency is an important component of accessibility and is necessary to remain competitive, so it is important to ensure that the design elements on your website are not inhibiting your customer’s ability to find the information they need.
Improve Your Content
It is possible that your content, rather than your web design, is what is driving your customers away.
It is easy to write any content – but it is much harder to write thoughtful and engaging content. Unprofessional or unclear content on your site sends a message to the visitor that your business is unprofessional. Make sure that your content is free of typos and grammatical errors, that the language you use is inclusive, and that your content is relevant.
Content that is too lengthy or formatted in blocks can be off-putting. Because people’s attention spans are decreasing, any communication should be clear and concise. Eliminate any information that is unnecessary or off-topic.
Of course, sometimes the converse is the problem: it may be that your website is lacking the information that your potential customers need to be converted to paying customers. Are your product descriptions adequate? Is your contact information and connected social media easy to find? Finding the right balance is tricky, which is where turning to a professional is appropriate.
Take Your Web Design to the Next Level
If you are unhappy with the bounce rate or conversion rate on your website, it may have to do with your web design. Schedule a consultation today so we can review your existing site and figure out a redesign that will help you take your business to the next level.