As we monitor the evolving relationship between PR and marketing departments, we start to notice how much a business’s reputation matters when it comes to sales. In fact, 75 percent of people judge a company’s credibility on their website. If the website is slow, poorly designed, or unnavigable, there’s a chance visitors will leave and an even higher chance they’ll never return.
If you think of your website as your brand’s first impression, you’ll start taking it more seriously. Even startups need to focus on PR and manage their reputation, or it’ll be made for them. The last thing you want is to start your brand off with disengaged, unhappy, or uncaring customers.
This article will examine the many website problems that may be turning away potential business. We’ll explain what you can do to fix these website issues before launching your site.
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10 website problems that turn potential customers away
Being aware of website problems can help you avoid losing potential business and attract happy, loyal customers.
Here are ten website problems that could cost you potential business:
1. Insecure hosting platform
Online fraud is on the rise, so it’s more important than ever to use a secure hosting platform. For this reason, customers will check for an SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificate before entering your site. An SSL certificate, as noted by the “https” instead of “http,” states the site is secure.
SSL encryption not only adds an extra layer of security but also adds a trust signal and can help improve SEO. Besides updating security patches and versions software, you can use a trusted and easy web hosting provider like NameHero to protect and encrypt your entire website.
2. Slow load times
According to a Digital.com survey, 53 percent of online shoppers expect pages to load in 3 seconds or less, while half will abandon a site after 6 seconds. It’s clear that a fast website is essential.
To speed up your website, you’ll have to clean up your site’s code, update your PHP version, and remove slow-executing queries. You can use Google Pagespeed Insights to find slow content. Once you find this content, optimize it by reducing file sizes or caching it for good.
3. Navigation challenges
Clear and intuitive navigation helps customers engage and encourages them to take action. Menus should be organized and labeled, and the search box must be easy to find. Keep page titles and calls to action simple, and avoid bombarding visitors with too much information.
As a rule, you’ll want to keep your subcategories to a minimum. If you think customers will get lost trying to find your content or products, you’ll need to tighten up your site’s navigation.
4. Outdated content
In PR 101, we discussed the importance of knowing your audience. Without a detailed audience persona, it’s difficult, if not impossible, to market to the right people. Content that’s outdated, incorrect, or inappropriate for your audience won’t engage viewers, so they’ll leave your site.
Your website should be regularly updated with fresh, relevant content. Not only is this good for SEO, but it reassures potential customers that your business is still operating. To write better content, observe web trends, and make sure outdated content is removed or updated quickly.
5. Outdated design
An outdated website design screams amateurish and can turn potential customers away. Strive to keep your website up-to-date with a modern, professional design. Adopt a responsive design platform, and make sure colors, fonts, and images are cohesive and stay true to your branding.
As a PR professional, you should always ask questions, challenge assumptions, and talk to people. Maybe your website design wasn’t outdated a year ago, but things change quickly on the internet. Advocate to do right by your customers by creating a design they really love.
6. Poor grammar
Potential customers can be quickly turned off by poor grammar and spelling errors, but not for the reason you think. Poor grammar is typically associated with scams because most of the phishing emails you’ll read are full of inaccuracies. In the end, it makes you look illegitimate.
Ensure all website content has been proofread and edited by someone with excellent writing skills before posting. Use tools like Grammarly and AI software to help you spot key errors.
7. Lack of mobile optimization
A vast majority of internet users search the web on their phones, so if you don’t optimize your website on mobile, you’re going to lose their attention. Fortunately, many content management platforms allow you to optimize your content for mobile, including WordPress and Wix.
But before you update anything, test your website from multiple mobile devices and locate any issues with mobile optimization. Even the best content management platforms will warp text or make some features unusable on mobile, so don’t neglect to test everything beforehand.
8. Lack of contact information
Ensure potential customers can easily find your contact information. Your contact page, phone number, and email address should be prominently displayed on every page. You can also create a separate “Contact Us” page as a header at the top of the screen if you have multiple locations.
If you have multiple social media pages, place a link to each profile in your header or footer. You can even add a widget that shows your Facebook or Instagram feed on your homepage.
9. No email opt-in
Although a lack of an email opt-in won’t make people leave your website quicker, it will make it harder to follow up on leads. That’s because an email opt-in can grow your mailing list.
With a mailing list, you can reach out to interested buyers who may become repeat customers. Or, even better, it can encourage cart abandoners to finish their purchase. You can make an email opt-in box by connecting email platforms, like Mailchimp, to your business website.
10. Bad product descriptions
Nearly 40 percent of people return a product due to inaccurate product content. Most of these returns are in the clothing or apparel category, where an inch can make a huge difference in fit. In addition, 86 percent of customers won’t make a repeated purchase if the retailer gives inaccurate product information.
Product descriptions need to be accurate and provide enough information to help customers make decisions. Avoid using vague language, and make sure to include ideal user scenarios whenever possible. Include accurate pricing information, size options, and warranty details.
By staying on top of website problems, you can ensure your website is optimized for success—helping you keep customers and gain potential business. Keep these ten website problems in mind and take steps to avoid losing potential business for your company.