I applaud those that have the wherewithal and time to manage their own website. I really do. This may sound strange coming from someone who makes her living managing others’ websites but my goal is to make websites not look crappy. If you can’ t do that on your own, hire someone who can. If you can do it on your own, good for you.
However, I see a lot of mistakes carried out by people who self-manage their sites, probably because they just don’t know any better. So, I thought a post about some of the things that people do on their websites that are annoying to visitors might be in order. And maybe after reading it, you’ll take a look at your own website, and fix any of these mistakes, if they exist. And if you don’t know how to do it, well, I know a web person for that.
- Broken links
Broken links are always annoying but especially so when the broken link is on a purchase button. If you’ve got me curious enough about your product to get to the purchase page, at least make sure the links work
- Not including cost of things
I encountered this on the same site that inspired #1. I was interested in the product information, but there was no price available, so I had to click on something else to find the price. Make it easy for people that want information about your products. My mom used to say, “If you have to ask [about the price], you probably don’t want to know.” Don’t make people ask/guess/work extra hard. Just tell them.
- Use enough contrast in your images
How many times have you seen button graphics for links or whatever and there’s light colored text on a light colored background? With the increased use of gradient and other effects on buttons to make them look three-dimensional, this can be a problem. However, if the visitor can’t read what the button says (and there’s no alt text for the images or link titles), they can easily get frustrated and will leave your site.
- Too-bright colors
When the background color of your page makes visitors feel like they need to wear sunglasses to view your page, it’s not a good thing. Light colors are good, bright colors on dark colors is good for contrast. Fluorescent background colors for the whole page? Not so good.
- Inconsistent color schemes
If you have several “arms” of your web business, you may want to have a separate feel for each section, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. However, when there’s not enough consistency from one “arm” to the other, it can make visitors wonder if they’ve somehow ended up on a different website than intended.
Take a look at your site. Are you guilty of these website irritations?