Guides

3 Classic Ways To Kill Your Website (And How To Avoid Them)

It's surprisingly easy to create a rubbish website. A few basic mistakes here and there could cost your business big time in reputation and sales. Here are some important - but all-too-common - howlers to avoid.

Share this article

Share this article

It's surprisingly easy to create a rubbish website. A few basic mistakes here and there could cost your business big time in reputation and sales. Here are some important - but all-too-common - howlers to avoid.

Guides

3 Classic Ways To Kill Your Website (And How To Avoid Them)

It's surprisingly easy to create a rubbish website. A few basic mistakes here and there could cost your business big time in reputation and sales. Here are some important - but all-too-common - howlers to avoid.

Share this article

Web set up. Three words that strike the fear of God into small businesses. Whether you started your firm pre ‘e-business’ and your website has struggled to keep up with the more sophisticated online needs of clients, or you are new to the market and don’t know where to start, today’s digital market space is baffling.

Doing nothing might feel the easier option, but we recently interviewed almost 2,000 small businesses and 75% of them were losing sales opportunities because of basic errors in their back end web set up. Read the top three mistakes small businesses make online and if any of them sound like you, there are some tips on how to fix them:

1 Have an out of date site tied in with an old supplier

For many SMEs, the online side of the business started out as something you could leave to your friend’s techie son to do or your mate to set up. But when that site no longer cuts it in the current market place, you have a problem.

We’re all more sophisticated in how we buy and communicate online now and it’s the same in B2B too; customers want forums where they can chat with knowledgeable people and get expert advice, they want key product information and pictures at their fingertips, they want what they want and they want it straight away.

So, stop being embarrassed about telling Will, who built the site before he went off to Uni and did a really good job, that you need something else. Explain that your business has changed and customers are demanding a different experience online.

Find out the basic set up of your website – what software has been used? What code? What could that easily be bolted on to? Or do you need to start from scratch? Then decide where and how you want your business to develop, look at what you need to give your customers and then think about how these goals can be achieved through your website.

computer

Ummm, is it supposed to be doing that?

2 Forget the fundamentals (ie it doesn’t load on a smartphone)

Put loads of time in to your website? Spent hours arguing with your team about the text, brand colours, that picture of you at the Christmas Do - but have you got bogged down with aesthetics and forgotten the basics?

It might look good but can your customers actually view it? In recent research 59% of SME business websites were not mobile friendly, with a further 57% of the websites tested appearing too slow when viewed on a desktop.

For your customer, that’s like going to the shop door with an intention to buy and then finding the door sticks and its too much hassle to get in, so you go and find somewhere else that sells what you want to buy.  People want to view all content easily on whatever device they are on - usually a phone or tablet.

Ofcom reported in the summer that 2015 has been the year that smartphone Internet research has overtaken desktop browsing.

The consumer demand to seamlessly browse your website on any device any which way doesn’t just apply to content but also pictures. So if you have built a whizzy site that is heavy on visuals, make sure the good stuff can be accessed on all devices, quickly.

Touching Smart Phone

If it don't load on a smartphone, then it might as well not be there

3 Screw up the social media

Social media is not for everyone.  And if you decide your customers are not all hanging out on Twitter, Facebook and the like, and neither are your staff, then don’t dabble in it. Otherwise you will end up one of those businesses that has a blank, bare Facebook page or Twitter feed and just gives a needlessly poor impression of themselves.

You know who you are. However, if you do decide that its important for business and that chat, banter and content sharing takes place across these mediums and you are missing out by not being involved, then you need to embrace them properly. Make a plan. What do you want out of it?

Ask people in your business that are genuinely interested and social media savvy to take the lead and give them the time to run with it. And don’t forget the basics – make sure Facebook is set up and functioning properly (73% of corporate pages aren’t) and ensure a fully operating Twitter feed (68% of firms manage to miss something here too).

Managed well, these can be a fantastic way of keeping your finger on the pulse. But do the proper analysis first.

Related Articles
Get news to your inbox

3 Classic Ways To Kill Your Website (And How To Avoid Them)

Share this article