A company website is the main marketing tool of any digital brand. Avoid these website mistakes if you want your site to truly shine.
Websites are Key to Digital Branding
Your brand will reach so many more people on the web than it might in real life. After all, people must be in a specific place at a specific time to access brick and mortar stores. However, they can access your brand online at any time from anywhere on earth.
SEE ALSO: Does Your Brand Really Need a Website?
Even customers who prefer to shop or access services in person will often times look at websites first. They will then base their purchasing decisions on what they see. If you want to have a professional and user-friendly website that draws customers to your brand, here are some website mistakes to avoid.
1. The DIY Approach
If you are a seasoned developer, it might be a simple task for you to create your own website. However, it requires experience and a specific skill-set to create a responsive and effective website. High-level website creation is a difficult task, even for experts.
While there are numerous website-building software brands who claim that they can help you build a site in a snap, their software is often not that easy to use. Regardless of what they may suggest, it takes far more to create a successful website than picking a template and few images. You want your website to look expensive and ultimately be worth as much as possible.
According to research from Stanford, 75% of customers admit to making judgments on the credibility of a company based on their website design. Before they read your bio, examine your content, or read any reviews or testimonials, customers decide if you are credible or not based on how your website looks. As a lackluster website can hurt your credibility with customers and consumers, it is definitely worth it to hire professionals. They can create the perfect website for your brand.
2. A Confusing Domain Name
Often business owners make life difficult for themselves by choosing domain names that do not make sense. One of the most common website mistakes is opting for a domain name that is not obviously related to the company. Another common mistake is picking a domain name that does not end in .com, .org. or, .net.
While picking the right domain name can be a challenge, don’t overthink it. Even the most clever domain name will not do you any favors if it confuses consumers.
3. Directionless Use of Color
Many of the world’s biggest brands have signature colors that customers can easily recognize. For example:
- Netflix uses red
- McDonald’s uses red, yellow, orange, and white
- Facebook uses blue and white
- UPS uses brown
Customers will often associate those colors with a brand. Cohesive visuals are a part of any digital brand’s identity. As far as website mistakes go, having a site that lacks any sort of visual direction is a big one. It can make customers confused, dislike your site, and possibly forget it entirely.
4. A Website that Does Not Work Across Different Screen Sizes
While people will access your site on their personal computers, they will also likely access them on a number of other mobile or handheld devices. An unresponsive website will look different on a 13-inch laptop screen than a desktop computer. It will look even more different on a mobile device or tablet if your site is not designed to be responsive. Without the right design, it may be too jumbled to access at all on many devices.
In a world where roughly 60% of searches are now done on mobile devices, this can harm your brand. Depending on your brand’s niche, the share of mobile searches might be even higher.
Google also penalizes sites which are not mobile-friendly, which means that fewer people will see your site. In order to make sure you have a responsive site that can rank as highly in Google search as possible, it is worth it to hire professionals to build it.
5. Using a Private Proprietary Platform
You want to make sure your site is built with a public website building tool, rather than on a private proprietary platform. While both look good, the issues start to arise when you want to make small changes. On a site built with a public website building tool, like WordPress, you will be able to make tiny changes in real time yourself via a user-friendly interface. When you use a private proprietary platform, you will have to contact the creators every time you want even the smallest changes. You will also have to pay them for their time.
6. The Absence of SSL
You want your website to be an “https” site and not an “http” site. This can be free of charge depending on your website host and has numerous benefits. That “https” gives you:
- A speed boost
- A more secure site
- Increased trustworthiness
Increased trustworthiness can lead to a boost in traffic and conversions. Also, many savvy consumers won’t shop on sites that don’t have SSL encryption. If your site involves an online store, SSL is a must.
7. Foregoing SEO
One of the website mistakes that really takes a toll on small or new digital brands, is not optimizing their website for on-page SEO.
Ranking highly in search results is one key way to get site traffic. Many new brands put a lot of time, effort, and money into a website, only to discover that they are not getting any traffic. A lack of any SEO strategy in content can make it impossible for anyone to find a site. Don’t let this happen to your website.
SEE ALSO: How Do I Generate Free Website Traffic?
Don’t Get Caught Up In Website Mistakes
Ultimately, digital brands and business often end up putting a lot of resources into creating the perfect website and crafting content to bolster their digital brand. However, just because someone is working hard, does not necessarily mean that they are working smart.
You can labor for weeks building a website for your brand, only to discover that it is not responsive, doesn’t have the right look, is not secure, and that it does not show up in search results at all due to a lot of tricky little details.
A functional, aesthetically pleasing, and cohesive website that indexes highly in Google and makes consumers take it seriously can do wonders for your digital brand. Unless you specialize in website building, design, and SEO strategies, you would likely benefit from some professional guidance. While it is easy to make website mistakes that harm your brand’s credibility, it is also very easy to avoid them once you know what to look for.
What website mistakes can you look past and which make you doubt a brand? Comment below…