Sterling PR's Rosie Brown shares her thoughts on the top three features not to include when designing your company website...
Designing a company website can quickly become overwhelming. With so many options for site design, it can be difficult to begin choosing features you want to incorporate. That’s why we’ve put together a list of three design features to avoid when creating your company’s website.
Unless your company is Pinterest, infinite scroll does no favors for you and your business. The whole point of your website is to provide visitors an idea of who you are, what your product is, and how to contact you to either buy it or learn more about it. Infinite scroll has the reverse effect; instead of prompting your visitors with a call to action, it overwhelms users with a limitless amount of content. You may as well whack every website visitor on the head with an encyclopedia, because that’s how content overload and aimless navigation feel.
Speaking of aimless navigation, your website should guide visitors through your content so easily that users find it intuitive. We recommend that our clients’ websites include a call-to-action link on every page. For instance, a home page might include a brief product description and a “Learn more” button that links to the product page right next to it. From there we’ll offer for visitors to “Find out more” either through a contact form or with a link to the Contact page.
You can also maintain easy navigation by keeping your content limited. For many companies, the website doesn’t need more than 10-15 pages. Visitors should feel like they’ve read everything there is to know about your company and product, without feeling fire-hosed with the information. Too many pages (or too much content on each page) will result in mentally exhausted visitors who may leave your site instead of contacting your representatives for more info (because who would want more info after reading every piece of marketing collateral you have on the website?).
Despite 95% of users reporting that they find pop-ups annoying, websites continue to use them. These folks claim that pop-ups are effective in getting visitors to submit their contact information to a company’s database. While it’s important to have a call to action, it’s even more important to not annoy your website’s visitors. Utilize the space on the webpage to put what you need on your site; there should be no need for a window that blocks the content your visitors want to read. If you’re looking for a compromise here, try using an expandable form, like we do on our website (click on the red ‘Tips’ bar in the upper right corner to test it out). You’re still using the space given without preventing your users from reading the content on the page.