The things you exclude from your website are just as important as the things you include.
In fact, including some of these things could harm your reputation, make your site less functional and even make your online marketing less powerful.
There are all kinds of lists and suggestions out there on how you can improve your website by adding different features or pages. But, what you don’t hear very often is what you should not put on your website.
Copy-Heavy Pages or Unnecessarily Long Sections
Remember that most people skim content when they read online. When they land on one of your pages, they will quickly search for what they are looking for and if they don’t find it right away, they will leave your site.
Make sure your pages aren’t too copy heavy by breaking long sections up into smaller paragraphs, using lists and adding headers and images.
Bells and Whistles that Slow Things Down
It’s easy to get caught up in image sliders, sounds, moving graphics, videos and interactive content that you can actually make your site harder to use. It’s okay to use some special features, but make sure they don’t slow your site down. Also be careful not to distract from your purpose and calls to action.
The fancy features you do add to your site should be very professional. Unprofessional images, blog posts, shopping tools and forms tell your market you aren’t trustworthy and can actually scare people away. Avoid this problem by making sure every aspect of your site is professional and high quality.
This will also help you avoid high bounce rates and make your site more helpful, as it effectively communicates your messages and attracts customers.
A Complicated Contact Form
Complicated contact and subscription forms can also scare visitors away. People want to be able to perform actions quickly and easily, and if your forms are hard to use, people won’t fill them out. It’s also important to only ask for information you absolutely need, like a name and email address, to make site visitors more comfortable.
If you use a contact form, it’s a good idea to also include some other means of communication, like a phone number or physical address.
Hidden Subscription Forms
Make your contact and subscription forms easy to find so people will use them. Put them in a noticeable place and use colours, design, buttons and images to draw attention to them. This is an especially important step if you are working to build your email marketing.
Illogical Calls to Action
Finally, avoid illogical or confusing calls to action on your site. The calls to action on each page should include context and tell people why they should follow through. They should promise some kind of value and be easy for people to respond to, so they don’t have to sift through your site to take action.
The things you exclude from your website are just as important as the things you include. Use this list to make sure you aren’t sabotaging your site and rendering it less useful for your online marketing plans.