We all make them–mistakes, that is. But when it comes to creating a website worth remembering, you want to minimize mistakes and miscalculations. Some errors damage your reputation with search engines. Other web design blunders are time wasters for web users. Determine which mistakes you are making with your web content that could be killing your site and how to fix them with these 10 tips.
- Use the font that you would want to use for your 80-year-old grandmother. If users have to squint to read your content, chances are they’ll hit the close button as quick as they can blink. Anything tiny, lightly colored and frivolous has got to go. More specifically, readers find sans serif fonts much easier to read than those with tags and tails. For fonts with funk, regulate them to headings and logos. Better yet, find a ghostwriter to help you choose the best fonts for your content.
- About those external links. While backlinks are essential for SEO, you don’t want these to direct users away from site. Make sure they are set up to open in a new web tag. Also, don’t hide your external links with hovering techniques or elusive color schemes. Keep your links front and center by utilizing contrasting colors and by underlining them.
- Just say no to drop down menus. They hide your site’s files and programs, which makes it difficult for search engines to find your site. Plus, users hate having to control the pull down tabs to search for content.
- Keep things simple. Users don’t want to play guessing games about where your contact information or blog is located on your site. Readjust your navigation schemes and layout so that those pages and tasks on your site that are most frequently accessed are front and center.
- “Under Construction.” If your website is under construction, then don’t put it out there to the public . Save the interest to your site for when you actually publish your page.
- Get rid of Flash. Sure, it was fun when it started, but it has all but lost its novelty. When Flash is used on your homepage, it disrupts search engine optimization and makes accessing your site a tedious process.
- Skip the animated GIFs. Watching bouncing bears and falling snowflakes on a website is so 1999.
- Forget about pop-ups! They scream spam and cheapen a website.
- How much money do you make from your website? Consider cutting your ads if your answer is less than the price of a burger. Otherwise, keep your ads at a minimum. You don’t want your site to look like a telephone pole come political season. Also, use a layout that is conducive for your website so users aren’t busy sorting through sales for Viagra and antifungal foot spray in order to find your info.
- Love Miranda Lambert, or are you more of a KISS fan? Well, not all of us care for either, so leave your favorite tunes to the privacy of your own computer. Nothing is more embarrassing than opening a website at work or in public and to have some God-awful song play at top volume.
If you are still struggling, do your research by scouting out the best in the biz. Look at how the most popular sites on the web as they relate to your site. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Miranda B is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.