A website is your business’s image to the world. Anyone, no matter what day or time can get on the Internet and view your website. That first impression can either help your business or it can hurt it. Here are 4 reasons your website is hurting your business and what you can do to correct them.

  1. You paid some high school kid or a family friend $300 to create a website. It looks awful. webpagesthatsuck.com would probably give you an award for worse website of the year. It looks like your business is a fly by night company that can barely afford to say in business.
    Solution: Find a reputable web design firm and pay for a quality website. When a website is done properly it can help bring in business and keep customers coming back. Yes, it will probably cost you $1000+ BUT your website will actually match how your business functions. Professional.
  2. It hasn’t been updated since it was created. Your site still has information about an event from last year or some out of date special. Old information looks like you don’t care, which is true. If you can’t even spend some time updating your site what is the rest of your business like?
    Solution: Keeping up on your site lets your guests know that your business is active, that you care about your business, and your image. Even if your sites is a brochure/static site, take a look at it ever 3-6 months. If you see something that needs to be changed or added, do it. If you don’t have the time or the knowledge to update your site, hire a web designer to do the updates. Also keeping your content fresh can help your page rank on Google/Bing/Yahoo. Which means people will have an easier time finding your website.
  3. You make it difficult for your guests to find anything because your site is disorganized, too cluttered, and in general not user friendly. This goes beyond #1 because even professionally designed sites can be difficult to navigate.
    Solution: Think of your site as if someone knows nothing about your business. What would you want them to know? What is most important? Next, organize it in a way that your guests will be able to know exactly what you do in 2 seconds and be able to find what they need or at least get to the page in 2-5 seconds. If they have to scroll, hunt through menus or pages, then you are doing it wrong. The chances of the visitor leaving greatly increase.
  4. Your site is annoying. It is filled with ads, flash intro’s, music, javascript that disables the right click menu, or other things that get in the way.
    Solution: Get rid of it. Yes, ads probably bring you money. But how much? Wouldn’t it be better to use that screen real estate to promote your business/product/service? Besides why do you want someone to click an ad that takes them away from your site? You worked so hard to get them here. As for the flash intro, music, etc, get rid of those things too. They do nothing be annoy people to the point of never coming back. Is that crappy midi song you play in the background worth losing a customer? What about forcing some one to watch a 30 second intro… Every time they come to your site? Worth it? NO. If you are that worried about someone stealing your content. DON’T PUT IT ON THE INTERNET. If some one wants your information on your site, disabling the right click menu won’t stop them.

Your website is your business’s image to the world. So why not put your best foot forward and make the best impression possible? Even small things like redesigning the home page can do wonders for your website. This week take a look at your site. What sort of impression is it giving your visitors?