I visited your website – did it help me?
What makes you look forward to visiting some websites, but regret visiting others?
Is the layout really awkward to use?
Or is it because you’ve searched for a particular topic, only to find that the page suggested is of no help at all?
I’m guessing that happens every so often.
It’s usually just a case of the website owner not realising the errors made, or not going the extra mile to make the layout more appealing.
But sometimes there’s something more that’s missing…
“Your website didn’t help me”
10 types of website that make me want to X out
It’s helpful to see these in print, as I’m sure at some point or another these have all applied to me too.
1. Not enough detail
Don’t assume everyone already knows the basics.
If your post’s teaching a topic, please include images and explain every step so that it’s easy to understand.
Less isn’t more, when you’re still learning.
Please don’t use a technical term without explaining what it is.
And if you’re telling me I need to use specific codes or actions, please show me exactly where to include them, and the pointers I need to look out for.
“what’s obvious to you, may not be so obvious to a beginner”
2. No links for further reading
Unless your blog post’s really detailed, please include links to other websites with useful follow-up information.
When you mention a great product, or suggest places to visit, or skills to learn – I’d love to know where I can buy that product, visit the same exciting place, or read a tutorial.
Don’t make me guess, as I probably won’t.
Oh, and when you include the links, please set them to open as a new page so that I can easily find my way back to your website and carry on reading.
“being helpful encourages your readers to visit your website again and again”
3. Annoying popups
Ok, I guess that not all popups are annoying.
Those little rectangle boxes that “popup” on your screen unannounced, are alright if they discreetly appear in the corner or float out to the side.
But not the ones that cover the screen 5 seconds after I’ve clicked on to your website. I’m trying to read your post!
I want to carry on reading, not stop to fill out a form.
If you have to use a popup, please wait until I’m about to leave. That’s good timing as I’ve finished your post.
And also, please check your popup on a mobile. Sometimes, I can’t find the X or “no thanks” option.
“thanks, but no thanks”
4. Too many forms
I’m happy to fill in my email address and perhaps my name if I’m subscribing to your website.
Do you really need my gender, birthday, post code and telephone number to send me an email?!
I don’t think so.
That’s too much information and you’ll lose me as a subscriber, even if your freebie offer is the best thing since sliced bread.
“don’t ask for unnecessary personal details”
5. Misleading title
It’s disappointing when a blog post doesn’t cover the same topic as its title.
I visited your website to read your blog because the title looked interesting. It’s exactly what I’m looking for.
But occasionally, it isn’t.
Occasionally, your amazing title’s just a ploy for more traffic, as the content doesn’t match the hype.
Please don’t mislead. I need the blog post to include the title’s promise of information.
“amazing titles without related content, won’t build a following”
6. Ignored comments
I enjoy reading your blog post, but I also look forward to reading the comments section.
Comments are great when there’s interaction – they need to be acknowledged and responded to, as necessary.
But if the comment’s posted a while ago, and you’ve still not responded – you’ve missed an opportunity to help others.
We comment on your blog post as we’re interested in your opinion.
“it’s not just your blog post, it’s the comments section too”
7. Hidden social media
Ok, so I’ve enjoyed your post. The title’s brilliant, the content’s relevant and your website’s helpful. Thanks, that’s great.
But I can’t find an easy way to share your post or follow you on social media.
Please give me some social media icons to use. Encourage me to spread the word.
What’s your Twitter tag or Facebook name? How do I find you on Pinterest?
Usually I’ll find that information at the top or bottom of your website. But sometimes I can’t. Sometimes that information’s nowhere to be found, and that’s disappointing.
“don’t make me hunt for your social media”
8. Slow website
I know how easy it is to fill up your website with all the latest plugins and widgets, only to ignore it getting slower and slower. Much slower.
Visit GTmetrix.com to see how much time your website takes to open a page. Then do something to speed it up.
Maybe you just need to change the layout, remove excess plugins, and get rid of the “bells & whistles”.
I recently noticed my website took over 12 seconds to open! Yes, I know that’s a ridiculously embarrassing amount of time, and I’m sure several people gave up waiting – sorry if that was you.
The ideal speed is apparently 3 seconds.
I’m not quite there yet, so please be patient whilst I shave off those last few seconds…
“speed makes a difference”
9. Menus that keep disappearing
Menus with multiple dropdowns, can be difficult to use.
When hovering over the first menu option, it leads to another, and then to another. But by the time I’ve moved my mouse to the last option (which is the one I want), it’s disappeared.
So I have to start the process again.
Why make it so awkward?
There must be another type of menu you could use. Perhaps one with less sub-levels?
“don’t make it difficult to access”
10. Outdated technology
It’s amazing how many “big name” websites are still difficult to read on a mobile. Why aren’t they using a responsive format?
Even if your website has exactly what I’m looking for, it’s a nuisance to scroll from left to right to read each line. Please use wrapped text, or it’s unlikely I’ll read your post.
Come on guys, it’s the 21st century and most of us are going to visit your website using our mobile.
Your website needs to be an easy read – a good sized, large font and a background colour that makes it easy for me to spot your text. Hint: black text on a navy blue background isn’t such a good idea.
“responsive text and lots of white space, please”
What else would you like to change – let me know in the comments below?
Note: This article is intended to be a general resource only and is not intended to be professional advice.
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