Here is my list of the top website design mistakes that are made during the construction of the website.
7: Not including pictures into the website. In the 1850′s you could get away with websites that had no pictures. Trust me, back then people would have swooned at the sight of a static letter with the computer glow all about it; but nowadays your website will look like an electronic thesaurus without at least a few pictures sprinkled around.
6: Too many links up the top. Having links on the top of the website is very popular with up-and-coming websites but you have to be very careful how you go about it. Unless you are a massive corporation, you will just not be able to get away with a cluttered website. If people see too much going on at the top they will think that you are trying too hard (and they will be right). It is better to have only five or six links up top and then spread the rest of your links elsewhere.
5: Too much data on the homepage. The homepage is the first place that your customer sees and you obviously want to impress him from the start. You want customers to be drooling in awe, barely able to focus on anything else aside for what you are trying to sell them. But remember one important thing; if your website takes more than 15 seconds to load, your customer may never get a chance to drool. It is far better for the images and flash to be a little less sharp as long as the website downloads straight away. Trust me. The exchange is worth it. Speed is critical.
4: Not taking advantage of social media. You may think that there is no need to add a Facebook link to your site and you may be right. Some websites have no need to facilitate Facebook. But 75% of all other websites not only should incorporate Facebook, but if they don’t they are losing a nice chunk of their market. Everyone loves Facebook and networks like Facebook and Twitter have the ability to turn your website viral. And when I say viral I mean at least 1000′s of new faces.
3: A very long or tricky domain name. You may think that www.Iamthebestretailerforshoesintheworld.com may give an aura of confidence to your buyers, but in fact they will think it a hopeless attempt. The trick of the trade is to keep you website URL’s simple and short. Imagine if Google was www.thegooglemachinesearchbar.com. No one would use them. Netscape would own Youtube today. Also try to avoid anything aside for .com (like .info or .net or .tv etc.). Yes, our original domain name, www.saberdesign.info was a mistake. It didn’t take us long to realise that we needed to change our address to www.thesaberteam.com
2: Using offshore or sloppy companies. I’m not trying to shine my own mirror but be very wary before you decide to use an overseas web-designing company. They may offer you a website for $299 but there is a reason why the big companies are still in business. These companies have serious issues with time management and their designs are usually sloppy and out-of-date. The good offshore designers (some of whom are very talented) won’t do websites under the $2000 margin. You get what you pay for.
1: Not using SEO. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Imagine you have a school and you want the students in your city to come. You can’t expect them to know to type into Google ‘West Sydney Public School’. It is more likely that a parent of a potential student will type in Google ’Schools in West Sydney’. If you don’t have SEO customized correctly that parent may never see your site, but if you paid a web-designer to set up SEO for you, much more traffic will come to your site. He will add coding within the website that will place your school higher up on Google search. Good SEO is likely to bring you as much attention as carrying a crying kid onto the plane (but for good reasons).
Written by Sam from SABER Design. www.TheSaberTeam.com
More posts coming soon.