The first mistake is to design a website by just duplicating an existing website template. With that mindset, the provider will build you a website that you may like, but your customers might not be impressed with it. Since your goal is to build an attractive, user-friendly website for your customers, you can see that this approach defeats that purpose.
The right approach is to build your website around customers’ expectations first, and not only around your expectations. The success of your website depends on how customers respond to it. Try to understand as much as you can about your customers’ preferences and build the website for your customers. Here are a few examples of what you and your website designer should think about prior to designing your website:
- What information will your customers be looking for or expecting when they land on your site?
- How can you customize the layout of your website to help customers find that information quickly?
- Which computing device will your customers use most often: a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone? (Make your website even more user friendly for that device.)
Many people make the mistake of choosing a templated website because of its “low cost” offer, but one thing people often don’t realize is that it also comes with a “low result” outcome. Let’s face it, there are unlimited opportunities for any of us to make more money in life, but time is limited. If you invest in a cheap website, you are not only wasting your money, but you are also wasting your time, and time is limited. Each of us only has 24 hours in a day. Using your time effectively depends on which types of projects you invest in. So be smart and go with the custom website design, or at least template website readjustment to fit your specific needs. It will effectively attract visitors to your site and gain their interest in your services and products.
The second mistake is when the provider approaches the website design from the designer’s standpoint only and leaves out the online marketing perspective. Although your target audience is human (customers), the other type of audience that also visits and ranks your site regularly is search engines. Today, since most consumers find websites through Google.com and Bing.com, if your website is not optimized to be search engine friendly, you will lose your chance of getting in front of your target audience. Here are a few techniques for optimizing your website:
- Your website must be mobile responsive and user friendly on all computing devices from desktops to laptops and tablets to smartphones.
- Each of your web pages must be optimized with keywords highly related to what you sell or promote on that page.
- Your website’s content must be helpful and pleasant in the eyes of your target audience.
The third mistake is when people chose a cheap web hosting plan for their website. These cheap plans often cause your website to load slowly during high traffic hours. That is a window of time when you need your site to load fast to gain customers. On the surface, it may seem that people save some money going with a cheap hosting plan, but in the end, they are losing sales left and right without knowing it because visitors exit the site before it is even fully loaded.
Worse yet, people use the money they thought they had saved (and often more) to invest in a marketing campaign to drive visitors to their website. What they don’t realize is that most of the visitors exit the website because it is loading too slowly. You now see the circle of madness. Here is what you should do: Go with the provider who will host your website on premium servers. You pay a little more for it, but your money will be well spent and your time will be well invested.
The fourth mistake occurs when people forget to keep their CMS website’s version and plugins up to date. This causes some of the site’s features to fail and opens the site to spammers who might hack into the website. No matter how great your website content is or how effectively you drive qualified leads to your website, if some of your website’s features do not work correctly or as your customers expect, you will lose viewers. Likewise, if your site is compromised, you will not fully capitalize on your incoming leads.
We all know that driving qualified leads to a business website is not cheap. Yet, the success and survival of most businesses today depend on an effective website. This has never been truer than in today’s social and technological environment. Therefore, you should choose the web hosting provider that includes those services in their web hosting plan, or at least pay them periodically to bring your CMS website up to date. Don’t ignore this process. It is one of the most critical components for successful website performance.
Each of these four factors is critical to the effectiveness of your website. Address them well and you will significantly increase your chances of success. If you find this article helpful and think others can benefit from it as well, please share it. We want this article to fulfill its purpose: To help people avoid, or recover from, the common mistakes that sabotage the success of your website and online marketing campaigns. Thank you!