website design mistakes

Top 13 Website Design Mistakes Businesses Make

Your website is your virtual storefront. It’s the place where potential customers will check you out before deciding whether to buy your products or services.

Your website is your online marketing tool. It’s the first thing people see when they search for your company name. This is why you should avoid these website design mistakes.

So it makes sense that you want to design a great, user-friendly site that will attract and keep visitors. Sadly, many businesses make mistakes in the design of their website.

These website design mistakes hinder their marketing efforts to market themselves well online and grow successfully.

Here are some common mistakes to avoid when designing a website: Designing a website is more than just designing mockups for the homepage. A website needs to be designed with all components in mind.

About 48 percent of people cited that a website’s design is the No. 1 factor in determining a business credibility. (Blue Corona)

It’s not enough to have an attractive homepage if the checkout process on your e-commerce site is cumbersome or if the CTA on your blog sucks.

A good design should make it easy for people to complete their tasks and provide them with what they need every step of the way.

Common Website Design Mistakes.

You created an awesome website, and it looks fantastic. But, there’s a problem. Visitors can’t find what they’re looking for on your site.

Maybe you forgot to include a search box. Or maybe your navigation is confusing and visitors can’t figure out how to get to the information and products they need and want.

Don’t spend another day wondering why people aren’t visiting your site!

Making a website is a major investment for any business. You want to make sure that you’ve chosen the best possible design for your company.

With the internet being a vital part of any business, it’s important to make sure your site is up to date and reflects your brand. But did you know that many businesses make common website design mistakes that hurt their SEO?

If this sounds familiar, then read on! You’ll find helpful tips for how to avoid these web design mistakes, so your site can rank higher in search engines.

  1. Above the fold
  2. Website Load Speed
  3. Design Responsiveness
  4. Intuitiveness
  5. Navigational simplicity
  6. Readability
  7. Scannability
  8. Cleanliness
  9. Elegance in Web Design
  10. Branding
  11. Search Engine Optimization
  12. Annoyances
  13. Error handling

1. Above-the-fold.

In newspaper publishing early on, above the fold means content that appeared on the top half of the front page.

The headline story was always more visible from a distance. The same applies to your website. The information your visitors see first when they land on your website should be clear. Is your website above-the-fold?

Once on a company’s homepage, 86% of visitors want to see information about that company’s products/services according to KoMarketing)

People need to focus on the content of your website, so having a clear message in the hero section is good practice.

Your website users need to see that your site relates to the content they’re reading. They may be hesitant to continue reading because they’re unsure if you have what they want.

Content layout is important because users see above-the-fold content first when your site loads. Because of this, content that’s above the fold has been clear and drives your business objectives.

2. Site Speed.

Every page on a website needs to load quickly and automatically, or it will fail to convince people to stay on your site and click through to the next page.

Even just a couple of seconds of loading time can cause your site to fall to the bottom of Google search results.

A slow website will limit the number of people who will click through to your sales page or to your online store to buy.

Increasing your website loading speed can prevent the loss of 7 percent of possible conversions. (infront webworks) This is to say, if you want to attract more visitors and generate more sales, you need a website that loads in under a minute.

If your site is loading too slowly, it’s important that you add a fast-loading feature. At the very least, you should make sure that your site will be fast to load in a pinch, without the need to install any special software.

3. Responsiveness.

Responsiveness means responding quickly to people’s actions. For instance, clicks or keyboard events, and providing a seamless user experience.

If a site is slow to respond, it can hurt customer satisfaction and could cost your business customers.

Do you have an e-commerce store? If your site takes too long to load, it’ll take customers even longer to navigate to the products they want to buy. 89 percent of consumers shop with competition after a poor user experience. (Web FX)

4. Intuitiveness.

The intuitiveness of web design is important. Design is intuitive when users can focus on the task at hand without coming to a halt.

Not only should your website be easy to navigate, it should also be practical. You want your site to be easy to understand and functional for your users.

If your site is confusing or doesn’t meet the needs of your visitors, they may leave without ever giving your site a chance to impress them.

5. Navigational simplicity.

If your website doesn’t provide navigational tools in the right places or if the navigation itself is difficult to find, then visitors will never get to the information they want to read.

Many businesses confuse navigation with page organization. But a website needs to be easy to navigate so that it’s easy for visitors to find their way around and to get the information they’re looking for.

If the navigation is too difficult, visitors will often just give up looking for what they need and go somewhere else. The site should be easy to navigate and user-friendly, not confusing. Fix navigation errors.

After reaching a company’s website via a referral site, 50% of visitors will use the navigation menu to orient themselves. (Source: KoMarketing)

6. Readability.

Readability is a key aspect to making sure your website is a good digital asset for your audience. It helps your audience stay on your site longer and click on more of your buttons!

To help your readers keep coming back, try out these helpful tips for how to make your website read even more efficiently.

Poor image quality doesn’t make your visitors travel back to a separate web page to view the image on your page.

This is a quick way to lose visitors. Instead, use a service like Firebase Image for Content to enhance the image display.

Ensure all images are within a reasonable size. Also, keep your color pallet consistent. Use scale-to-fit. If you’re using a CMS to develop your website, you can save a lot of time by creating a “reader mode.

7. Scannability.

The holy grail of websites, especially when it comes to e-commerce, is it’s Scannability. Scannability is what you should strive for when it comes to your website’s design and navigation.

What is Scannability? It’s the ease of searching for specific product keywords on your site. While other factors such as features, design, and price are important, you can’t underestimate it’s importance.

You need to ensure that when people use your site, they can easily find what they’re looking for with little to no effort. When it comes to website design, implementing Scannability is a combination of visual and textual elements.

What exactly is visual? It means a website has a lot of photos and photos with just text. What is textual? It is in line with the type hierarchy of your design.

8. Cleanliness.

Not all websites are well-designed. Some websites have a lot of clutter, you land on a page and do not know where to go first. The idea of clean website design plays a huge role in how users interact with your website.

Your visitors shouldn’t have to sift through a bunch of HTML code to find your company’s information. A website should be easy to navigate.

In addition to this, it should clearly outline how your business helps a potential client. All too often, businesses take their websites out of context.

They create something basic but then find themselves getting sidetracked when someone needs to look at content about buying. In order to bring your website up to speed, you need to make it clean.

Users should not feel they have landed on a different website when they are only on a different page.

9. Elegance.

You may think that your website is attractive and sleek. But if your site design is poorly organized and less than attractive, you’ll attract few customers.

A bad layout can make it difficult for users to find your business and will make them feel uncomfortable on your website. 38 percent of visitors will stop engaging with a website if the content or layout is unattractive. (Blue Corona)

If given 15 minutes to consume content, two-thirds of people would rather read something beautifully designed than something plain. (Source: Adobe)

The aim of a website should be to bring customers to your store, not keep them away!

10. Branding.

On to website design mistake number 10. Branding – Branding isn’t just a method of communicating your company’s brand to the world. It’s also important to make sure your website’s design represents your company’s brand and communicates its values.


It’s not enough to have a fantastic website that looks awesome. It has to reflect the brand your company wants to present to the world.

You can build a stronger brand by focusing on several important aspects of the website design. Your logo should be obvious and easy for users to recognize. In your logo, you should clearly identify your company and name.


Your branding should be consistent with your company’s mission statement. Your design should be visually appealing so building a brand identity beforehand is great to attract. Learn more about branding on this ultimate guide to branding.

11. Search Engine Optimization.

Don’t get distracted from Google’s most important objective, which is to help users find the information they’re looking for. Search and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) are no-brainers.

When you make it difficult for visitors to find what they need, you’re losing traffic to your competitors. You are also giving those visitors, and your search traffic, a bad impression of your brand.

Search Engine optimization is not complicated, and there’s a lot you can do to improve your website’s performance. These are some common SEO mistakes businesses make, and the steps you can take to make your website stand out on Google search results.

12. Annoyances.

You spend a lot of time and energy on your site, but a few missteps in the design can make a big difference.


This list of website design mistakes will help you avoid common annoyances on your site, as well as how to fix them and avoid the same problems in the future. You can then use the corrections to grow your traffic and market effectively.


Adding a signature animation. This one’s easy. Avoid using animation or animations when visitors enter your website. You can replace this with a clear button or call to action that will help them connect with you quickly.


Adding unnecessary animations. If you choose not to use animations on your website, you’ll likely have fewer issues.

13. Error handling.

The aim of a website is to provide users with a useful and informative interface. But you can’t expect users to interact with a site if they constantly drop off.

Your site should contain some form of error handling mechanism, such as a form that returns users to your site to report errors. If your website does not contain error-checking and work-around solutions, it will harm your SEO.

Don’t make it difficult for users to leave feedback, as they will not want to leave negative comments.

Web Design Tips To Drive Growth

These are common website design mistakes that are costly and often make your site not discoverable. Many business owners focus more on getting a web design project than on getting the right one.

These common mistakes can cost you visitors and time. The answer is to use a content management system (CMS) for your website. CMSs are best at the following things: Collecting and structuring content. Managing content offering. Managing permissions and security settings.

Tailoring content for the specific needs of your website visitors. Providing unique content and solutions for every visitor on your website.

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Nonofo Joel
Nonofo Joel is a Brand Strategist at The Brand Shop. He frequently blogs about Branding, Website Design, and Search Engine Optimization on The Brand Shop Blog and other publications.