Why people leave your website?

In today’s digital world, not having a business website is out of the question.

Website users expect even small, local businesses will have a site so they could learn more about the company and the products they offer.

Companies also know that having a website might either make a great first impression or turn users away from them. They put a great deal of effort into preparing compelling content and directing people to their homepage.

Sadly, designing a website, many companies forget about the most important part: focusing on the customers. While looking at data gathered, they are at a loss as to why website users leave their website instead of converting – and what they can do to change it.

Sounds familiar?

If you too are having trouble with getting people to stay on your website, you might be doing something that is putting your website users off rather than encouraging them to say. To help you with finding and fixing the problem, I prepared a list of  5 quite common reasons why people are leaving the website as soon as they land on it.

The website design is confusing

Website design matters now more than ever. It takes only about 50 milliseconds (0.5 seconds) for a website user to decide does the website look trustworthy or not.

Not so long time ago I found an internet store which (instead of usual drop-down product categories) put down ALL of their products in a list on the left side of the website – it didn’t look well. If your company website looks like from early 2000 or is too cluttered to find anything on it quickly, it’s definitely time for a makeover.

Instead of having tons of photos (that take a very long time to load), various plugins (that might crash on slower computers or mobiles), “unique” fonts, stick to clean and professional website look.

There are auto-playing videos on the website

The video is one of the most popular and useful ways to introduce users to your product or service. That is if the video isn’t starting automatically the moment the user opens a website. If you are like me, you have 7-8 pages opened at once whenever browsing the internet. What happens when there’s an auto-playing video on one of the pages? The video interrupts what the user is doing, forces them to find the one website with the autoloading video and in most cases, close the page (that is if the whole browser didn’t freeze because of the video!).

You did get the user to focus on your website but only for a few seconds, enough to close your site. 82% of people have closed a web page because of an auto-playing video – and no, they won’t return later to watch the video. It’s even more annoying if a website user stops video playback and scrolls down the page, only to see the same video starting playing again in the corner.  You want customers to watch your product video or ad? Wait for them to chose to watch your video, not force them. And don’t even try “tweaking” the video player so it would be harder to stop or close the video playback – it will give the opposite effect to the one you expect.

The ad offer doesn’t match with the website offer.

Getting your users excited for your newest product or offer is all fine, as long as you don’t overpromise. There’s nothing more annoying for website users than clicking on an ad promising a great offer but when on the website, they see there are several catches to getting this (not so great anymore) deal. The first thing they will do then will most likely be hitting on the “Back” button.

You might get the clicks and traffic to your website coming from the overpromised ad, but the clicks and traffic won’t convert to more sales. What is worse though, overpromising and under delivering makes you seem untrustworthy – and that can really hurt your sales in the long run.

The website is not mobile responsive.

Not having a mobile website or having a poorly working one in 2019 is out of the question. According to Statista, mobile traffic was 52.2% of all Internet traffic in 2018 — in 2017 it was 50.3%. By 2019, it’s estimated that over 63.4% of all mobile phone users will access the Internet from their mobile phone. Can you afford to lose such amount of traffic? If your mobile website is difficult to use or too slow to load, website users will hit the back button and don’t bother with your company website again.  

What is more, if your website is not fast and easy to use on mobile devices, your Google rank will be much lower too. With their new ranking algorithm, Google ranks higher websites with fast and intuitive mobile websites over those who either have poor mobile performance or have no mobile sites at all.

So how can you prepare a mobile page convenient for mobile users?

  • It would be best if your mobile website were designed to adapt to the device screen size intuitively to give the most user-friendly experience (without the user having to pinch the screen).
  • Make sure that all links and buttons (especially those in the menu) are bigger to be easier to click and don’t forget about increasing the amount of space around them.
  • Call buttons are convenient on mobile websites – the website user only needs to click on it to get in touch with you. Putting the phone number as a text is acceptable too. Stay away from placing contact data on an image though!
  • Make all images optimised for mobile – large images not only take a good time loading, but they also eat a considerable part of the data plan.

If you want to check how mobile responsive is your current website, there’s a special tool made by Google that checks how many of the “mobile responsive” requirements your website is fulfilling – you only need to put your site address on their Mobile Friendly page.

The website is too slow

In the earlier days of the internet, no one minded waiting several minutes for a website to load. Now, the website speed matters as much as the design.  According to a KISSmetrics report, 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in two seconds or less, and 40% abandon a website that takes more than three seconds to load. The average website loading time meanwhile is 8–10 seconds for desktops and even 20 seconds for a mobile website!

Cutting just one second of your website loading time can boost conversions by around 7% so improving the loading time is definitely worth the effort.

The three biggest culprits of slow loading time are often unoptimised photos and animations, website plugins and unnecessary Javascript – so take a close look at them. Remove what is not needed (it will make your site look cleaner too) and don’t forget about resizing all necessary images – it’s especially important for mobile websites as large photos eat a good amount of data. Make sure you use status page to keep an eye on your website at all times.   

Those are not the only problems which might be hurting your website. I covered more (such as poor website navigation, broken links or too complicated sign-up forms) in “13 annoying website design mistakes”.

By finding and solving the issues with your website, you are sure to make a great first impression on your site visitors.

Did you have any other problem that caused your visitors to leave without converting? How did you resolve it?

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