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You know the importance of having a business website. You may even have jumped on the ecommerce bandwagon decades ago. However, recently, your website traffic has dropped, and your conversion rates are abysmal. The Web is constantly changing — ‘tis the nature of the beast — and if your website isn’t changing with it, you are likely to find increasingly lower traffic. Here are a handful of common website problems that might be driving your customers away.
1. Your slow load
It is 2015, and precious few Internet users still bother with dial-up connections. Because connection speeds increase every day, most online consumers are accustomed to getting the web content they want at the click of a button. One study found that more than 40% of users will navigate away from a page that takes more than three seconds to load. Your website must be fast enough to cater to the fastest connections, or your potential customers will become frustrated and lose interest, turning to your faster competitors’ sites instead.
2. No mobile, mo’ problems
We live in an increasingly mobile society; in fact, one study claims that about 60 percent of Internet usage occurs on phones or tablets. Thus, sites that are not optimized for mobile devices nearly always lose out on valuable sales because users cannot quickly and easily navigate to the pages they want using their preferred devices.
If you have devoted time to translating your Web pages into mobile-friendly formats, there might still be elements of your site that are not displaying properly on various devices. For example, advertising sourced through third-party vendors is not always up-to-date. To ensure your readers and customers receive the best possible mobile experience, you must be able to trust every widget on your site, including your native advertising so that it will translate properly.
3. Busy, busy, busy
Less is almost always more when it comes to your website design. Though you might be tempted to overload your pages with interactive widgets and eye-catching media, your visitors are more likely annoyed by constant motion and sound.
More than 95% of internet users absolutely abhor pop-ups — which includes those newfangled popovers so common on most sites today — and autoplay video and sound are reported to be the most hated web feature of all time. Of course, preferences for design change quickly in the digital age, so it is best to stay abreast of changing tastes rather than commit to a certain style for eternity.
4. Pricing predicaments
If a customer doesn’t know how much an item costs, s/he will never navigate to a payment page. Any business’s first priority should be providing accurate information regarding prices. You should never strive to obscure any additional costs that may come with the price of the product, like transaction or shipping and handling fees. By tacking on extra costs right before users are about to pay, you risk confusing and infuriating potential customers, which will convince them not to pay even as their wallets are open.
Of course, pricing is never a one-and-done action. While your website exists, you will frequently host sales, provide discounts, and swap out items that will alter the prices throughout your site. You must be diligent to ensure that the prices your customers see are exactly what they should expect to pay come checkout.
5. Consistent inconsistency
Humans are creatures of habit, which means if your website is at all irregular, you are going to turn off a large number of potential readers and customers. There are myriad ways you might have inconsistent content on your site, including:
- Spelling and grammar errors: Mistakes like these make you look unprofessional, which scares away many potentially profitable customers.
- Product information display: Every product page on your site should look the same, with pictures, dimensions, and other info in reliable and sensible locations.
- Dead links: For the best customer experience, your navigation must be accurate, and your pages must be kept current.
6. Customer service woes
Not every customer wants or needs to interact with customer service, but that doesn’t mean you should rob every visitor to your site of that opportunity. Contact information, including feedback forms, email addresses, and phone numbers, should be easily accessed from every Web page. Most customers know to look for contact info at the bottom of every page, and you absolutely should conform to their expectations.
Additionally, customers could not be more turned off by silent customer service. Any digital contact you receive — through forms or email — should be addressed promptly. The more you delay in responding to a question or complaint, the more business you lose once and for all.