- Poor host
A bad host would cause major headaches, namely slow site, intermittent access, hacked site, frustration and time lost for you and your clients, bad Google rankings, email troubles (setup on multiple devices and users, migration, intermittent access, errors, rejecting emails, etc).
So you may choose a host based on very low prices, but the impact in the short and long term is very significant.
- Undependable support
Support is key in any industry. If you have a website and run into some issues or need assistance to update it or configure emails / improve it and have no-one available to help, then you´ll end up with an out of date site, or worse – down! This happens a lot unfortunately where agencies and freelancers only go after new projects and abandon their existing clients or put them at the bottom of the pile. This is a major source of frustration for any website owner. It´s critical that you ensure your provider will be available in a matter of hours not days or weeks to talk to you and support you.
- Bad design
So you have the content and have an idea in mind. Your provider shows you mock-ups and you gave the go ahead. What about user experience? You need to cater for this from the very beginning of your project. How are your visitors going to perceive you? What are they trying to accomplish? How fast can they do it on your new site? Is everything optimised for their journeys?
What about the support they need once they are completing or have completed their goal? Are the contact details and hours of availability clearly shown?
We´ve all come across those sites where we can´t get directions to the store because the map is an image or there are no contact details to reach out for assistance. In today´s world where competitors are a click away, these mistakes are very costly to your business.
- No structure
Search engines like Google are programmed to crawl your site on a regular basis and find content relevant to their users´ searches. If you don´t make it easy for them to understand what your site is about, you´ll end up with content badly indexed and therefore you’ll be lost in the volume of results (i.e. not on the first page of Google). And you’ll therefore end up with low traffic reaching your site. It´s really in your biggest interest to help search engines help you… Using clear html tags (h1, h2…5) and an error free syntax along with clear navigations, sections, etc. are all massively important in the search engines indexing rules.
- Low quality copy
It started in schools and became a fashion with the web… Plagiarising content i.e. using copy written by someone else without their permission on your website. This is quick and dirty so why not? Well. First, it´s illegal. Second, your visitors will not feel that this is you and therefore you won´t establish the trust and rapport that you need in order to build a lasting relationship with them. Third, Google will kill your rankings as a result. Duplicated content is one of Google´s biggest enemy and it fights against it heavily. Google´s objective is to make the search of its users relevant. By listing the same content several times, it goes completely against its goals and therefore you are making a powerful enemy…
Your content needs to be unique, thought through and clearly adding value to your visitors, answering their questions / needs.
High quality content will generate you massive traffic from Google and social networks – never forget it…
- Not optimised code
On the web, speed is everything. Google, Facebook, Amazon wouldn´t be here today if they were slow… Amazon estimated that just a 1 second delay in a page load on their site equals to losing $1.6Bn in sales per year. In a similar vein, Google calculated if its search results were .4 seconds slower, they would lose 8 million searches per day. This would results in many millions fewer online adverts being served and therefore massive missed income.
As such, having a fast website is not an option but a must-have these days. There is a science behind performance optimisation and it takes quite a lot of experience to get it right. Once again the server setup also plays a role here.
A good code is like a well maintained electricity panel. Everything is labelled, easy to find and understand even for a new electrician. A bad code is like having wires coming out of everywhere and no-one except the person who wrote it that day can understand it… And maybe the day after he will have forgotten… Plus it’s prone to hacking and may slow down your site. So avoid this poor quality at all cost…
- Mobile and tablet were forgotten
Mobile applications provide users with an alternative way to access your web pages, as well as maintaining communication anywhere and anytime. Mobile accessibility is an integral part of competitiveness in your market. 91% of users won’t stay on your mobile site or app if it doesn’t satisfy their needs (i.e. navigate quickly or to find information). And even if your existing customers like your business, 50% of them will use it less often if it’s not mobile-friendly. Hence, still today, it’s one of the most common website mistakes. It should be thought through from the time your site is created.
- Social interactions
We live in a socially interactive world, and it’s very important for developers to make content sharing as simple as possible. Users should always be able to copy the link and post it on their accounts in social networks. Those links should bring an attractive image and a short description of the page it links to. This setup is very often missed by agencies who rush to the next job as this is hugely setup at the end of your project.
Each website needs to have buttons of social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, etc. Floating widgets with the specified buttons are simply necessary, in order for users to conveniently tweet the content, send it via email, download, etc.
Obviously, there are way more than 8 common website mistakes and this ranking is based on our experience. We provided some examples to raise your awareness on those and consider the impact this is having on your visitors/clients. As always, we’re here to help, so get those mistakes fixed as soon as possible if they’re on your site today and reap the benefits of taking action now!