Sam Bowman

3 Common Mistakes Startups Make When Building a Website

What every startup really needs is a quality, clean, easy-to-navigate website. 

Every founder or small business owner knows the importance of marketing what they do. You might end up spending thousands of dollars on billboards, radio ads, mailers, and social media posts. But what every small business really needs is a quality, clean, easy-to-navigate website. 
Chances are, you probably didn’t start a business having some kind of graphic design or coding degree. So maybe you’ve been putting off building a website. Or maybe you have one, but it doesn’t give an accurate depiction of what your business really does or who you are. 
It’s important to think of your business’ website as an initial contact with potential customers and/or clients. It’s often the first impression people will have of you, whether you’re strictly an online business or you have a brick and mortar location. Having a website that stands out can help you to draw in more customers and grow your business. 
Alternatively, having a bad website can turn people away. As a result, you could lose business and become obsolete very quickly. A solid user experience is so important when you’re creating a website. With that in mind, let’s take a look at three common mistakes small business owners make when building a website, and what you can do to avoid them. 

1. Too Much Information

Too much information? You might be wondering how that could possibly be a mistake. After all, your website needs to portray a picture of who you really are. But think about this: About 72% of people will strictly use their phone to browse the Internet by 2025. If your website isn’t optimized for that, they’ll turn away quickly. That includes focusing on things like slow load times and animation, but it also means that you shouldn’t have a lot of clutter on your website. 
Someone browsing your website should be able to do “the scan test.” That means they should be able to quickly scan through your website and get a basic idea of what you do and who you are. If they can, they’re more likely to spend more time reading the information that is actually there. 
So having large paragraphs of texts or dozens of graphics cluttering up your site isn’t going to keep anyone’s attention, and it will likely feel overwhelming. Having a clean site with easy-to-read information will keep people’s attention longer and will allow them to do their research on their terms. 

2. Making It Hard to Stay Connected

You can have the best-looking website in the world, but if people don’t know how to contact you, it’s worthless. It’s one of the things people are looking for when they visit your website: An address, a phone number, email address, and everything else. 
Your website needs some kind of call-to-action, to entice potential customers to contact you for whatever their needs may be. One study on small business B2B sites found that 70% of them didn’t have a CTA. Imagine how many potential customers you could be losing because of that. 
Your contact information should be easily accessible on the front of your webpage. Again, that’s why it’s so important to have a clean design. By making sure people know how to get a hold of you, you’re inviting them to do so, which can lead to more growth for your business over time. It also adds to the “humanness” of your website, which can make potential customers feel more like they’re connecting with the personality and humanity of your business, rather than just a cold, uninviting website. 

3. Letting It Go Stale

It’s one thing to build a fantastic website, but it’s another to keep it relevant. It’s not enough to just build a website and let it get stale. Information gets changed all the time, including business hours, things you offer, or even promotions you might have had in the past. 
By updating your website frequently, you’ll also help to boost its rankings in Google and other search engines. Google loves fresh content, so adding things like a blog, or just updating your content regularly will make your website easier to find and will let your potential customers know you care about your digital image. 
It’s not difficult to create a website that will really resonate with people. It just takes a personal touch and an understanding of what customers really are looking for when they’re seeking out information about your business. 
By avoiding some — or preferably all — of these common mistakes, you can create a website that people actually want to visit. In turn, they’ll be more likely to turn into customers or clients for your business, and even more likely to share your site with others.

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