How to Frustrate, Confuse, and Scare Away Your Website’s Visitors

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“Customer experience” or “user experience” (“CX” and “UX” as us web geeks call them) is just as important for your digital storefront as your physical one. As a small business owner, you’re used to the traditional physical storefront. So you know how it’s important to have a clean, organized appearance and friendly staff.

With your “digital storefront,” the same ideas apply. It’s just that it works differently. Here’s some common mistakes SMBs make that scare away website visitors – and what you can do to earn their business instead:

  1. Hiding Your Contact Information

You should have a “Contact” page in your main navigation on the upper right of your website. Every user expects that. You should also have your phone number there too, as that’s where most people look first when they visit.

Also, include your phone number and/or e-mail address at the end of the words written on every page. Include both so your visitors can use their preferred contact method.

  1. Focusing Too Much on SEO

Yes, your keywords do need to appear on your website pages. But, today it’s more important that they make sense.

So, nearly incomprehensible language like “Southlake, Texas HVAC Services from Southlake’s Leading AC Repair Company” shouldn’t appear on your page. Get that keyword in the title and a time or two in the body copy.

Google actually prefers that these days.

  1. Slow Page Load Times

Users can’t stand all the bells and whistles of super-fancy websites (in most cases). For some specialty niche businesses, cool effects are appropriate. For example, if you run a website design company. But for commodity services SMBs like you offer, this frustrates and annoys.

You don’t need a repeating video background or sliders. Users simply want to get to know your company and see if you’re the best option to solve their problem.

An image, some text, a nice menu, and maybe a video or two to build the relationship makes sense.

Your web pages should load in less than 3 seconds, and ideally less than 1 on the typical internet connection.

  1. Confusing Navigation

Most websites are laid out similar to this:

  • Home
  • Services
    • Subpages
  • Blog
  • FAQ
  • About
  • Contact

You might have a few other unique ones, such as if you donate to a charity and want to talk about that. Or, you may write different pages to the various market segments you serve (homeowners and businesses for example).

But for the most part that’s what users see at most sites. So, go way “outside the box” and do something different, and you confuse them and lose their business to someone else.

Keep it simple and predictable. And follow the rule of not requiring any more than 3 clicks to get to any single page on your website.

Those rules are simple, easy, and straightforward. But, so many SMBs break them. Follow them yourself, and you’ll more, and happier, customers.

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