You may receive a lot of visitors to your site, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re sticking around to see what you have to offer, much less to PURCHASE what you have to offer. But why is this? What are you doing so wrong that people bounce from your site within 10 seconds of clicking into it?
Below are 25 avoidable factors that make people want to leave your site almost instantly. If you recognize any of them as being on your own site, you might want to take steps to eliminate them right away…
1. Auto-sound: Even when I’m in the privacy of my own home I don’t appreciate being hit with sound of any kind. It’s startling. But when I’m at work or in public, it’s downright annoying.
2. Pop-Ups: You don’t like them—why do you think we do?
(QuickSprout apparently hasn’t realized how very uncool pop-ups can be:
3. Interstitials: You know how when you visit Forbes or Information Week they make you wait a certain amount of time before you can skip the giant ad page you landed on before you can visit their site? This is an interstitial, and nobody likes them. (Well, okay, I can handle Forbes’ because of their cool daily quote, but other than that, nobody likes them.)
(Still don’t know what I’m talking about?
Visit http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml for clarity.)
4. Pagination: One thing that annoys me beyond belief is having to click through 11 slides to see all of a “Top 10 List.” Why could you not have listed everything on one page? Oh yeah, because you’re trying to gain impressions…Don’t use this trick—everyone can see right through it.
5. Slow Load Times: Do I really need to explain this one?
6. Ads Before Content: Ads are slow to upload, so it’s VERY irritating to have to wait for ads to show before the content does. In fact, I won’t wait—if it takes more than 5 seconds for your content to load, I’ll look elsewhere for the same information.
7. Poor Navigation: If I can’t easily find your services, pricing and contact information, I’m out. Or, if I click on a tab or link that says “Career Opportunities” and am presented with your list of services, I’m going to assume you don’t actually want to help me, but are only trying to sell to me.
(If you’re not confused by this website, then you obviously have some hidden superpowers: http://www.007museum.com/)
8. Poor Scent Trail: If I can’t find the information I came to your site for in, oh, about 10 seconds, I’ll click the back button and visit the site listed below you in the search results. Make it easy for me to find the information I need, and fast!
9. Key Information is Simply Not There: It’s annoying to have to hunt for this information (pricing, contact, services), but if I spend time hunting for it, and then discover it’s AWOL, I’m going to be pretty upset.
(There is so much wrong with this website, but let’s pretend for a moment that we’re taking it seriously—“Oh, I want what they have to offer! Now if only I could figure out how to contact them… http://www.pennyjuice.com/htmlversion/whoispj.htm)
10. Immediate Registration Demands: Why would you time your subscription button to pop up the moment I start to scroll through your content? Give me time to see what you’re all about first! The more I get to know you, the more likely I am to subscribe to your newsletter or register for some free course you’re offering.
11. Typos: If you can’t create flawless content about a subject you’re supposed to be an expert on, I will NOT utilize your services or buy your products. Aside from my incredulity that you would be that careless with your online reputation, typos are distracting.
12. Lame Fonts: Again, distracting! Times New Roman says you’re not trying (or that you’re stuck in high school), while Comic Sans says you don’t take yourself seriously—at all. However, a bad font alone won’t send the average visitor running; but, combined with other factors on this list, it could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.
(Yes, it’s a school, but still—have some class! [Ha, get it? Have some class.]
13. Narrow Sites: It’s a thing. Don’t do it. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, then you’re safe.
(If you want to know what I’m talking about, check this one out:
14. Cookie Cutter Websites: If I’ve seen your website before but with a different name on it, I’ll be skeptical as to your commitment to excellence and originality.
15. Old Information: If I discover that your last blog post or newsletter was written in 2001—or even if it was posted in the middle of last year!—I’ll head out and search for more “relevant” information.
16. Lack of Clarity: Surprisingly, there are websites out there that are very unclear as to what the business is all about. Don’t be this guy—it’s embarrassing.
(All I caught when visiting this site was the word “Alien.” http://www.rogerart.com/)
17. AdSpeak: If I wanted to be bombarded with an obnoxious advertisement, I’d turn on the radio or TV. I’m visiting your site because I need real information, not to read some glossy saying or a bunch of tag-lines.
18. Browser Issues: Please, make sure your website supports all browsers!
19. Flash: Flash websites are not only NOT supported by most browsers, but they’re ugly and look unprofessional.
(Oh boy…and they CREATE websites?! http://i0.wp.com/www.globalwebfx.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/9th-worst-website-of-2013.jpg)
20. Video Only Homepage: I like to read, or at least scan, text for the main points. If you only cater to video users, you’re filtering out a huge number of potential customers and/or followers.
21. Boring: Some companies try so hard to be professional that they go overkill and create the most BORING WEBSITE EVER. You don’t want to make your prospects yawn at the thought of you (well, unless you sell pillows or mattresses or sleeping pills…).
22. Unprofessional: Then there are companies that try so hard to NOT be boring that they go the opposite direction, and they end up looking like a joke.
(This guy…I have no words. http://i2.wp.com/www.globalwebfx.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/7th-worst-website-of-2013.jpg)
23. Lack of Adequate Contrast: Poor color combinations can make it VERY difficult to read your text, and if I can’t read what you have to say, what’s the point of sticking around?
(While this site does demonstrate lack of contrast, it embodies so many other of the factors on this list as well. WARNING: It has auto-sound! http://www.mrbottles.com/)
Other sites you should use as an example of what NOT to do:
http://heaven.internetarchaeology.org/heaven.html#bottom (WARNING: Can induce seizures)
So there you have it—23 reasons people may be leaving your site. To see how we can help you create a site that people want to stick around on, visit http://vcwebdesign.com/web-development.