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Common Web Design Mistakes Small Businesses Often Make

Website Design

They say that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but truth be told, people tend to judge based on appearance almost all the time.

Nowadays, modern users are savvy about web design. They can tell a good website from a bad one at a glance. And, although this may sound harsh, to them, your business is only as good as its website.

According to a report by Stanford, 75% of people base the credibility of a business on their web design. And, 94% of users say that one of the reasons they lose trust in a website is because of how it looks.  

This shows that you need to be extra cautious about your online presence, especially if you want to build trust and impress modern users. Given the highly competitive environment that you’re in, having a bespoke West Palm Beach web design is no longer an option. It’s a necessity - and you can’t afford to commit mistakes when making one.  

As your go-to web design company in West Palm Beach, we’ve put together a list of the top eight design mistakes made by small business owners and entrepreneurs that we commonly see.  

Use this list to become aware of what you should avoid so you can make better design decisions as you improve or make your website.  

Let’s get started!

What Are the 8 Most Common Web Design Mistakes That Small Businesses Often Overlook?

Without a doubt, hiring a professional website designer in West Palm Beach is the way to go. But, if you’re really keen on doing it on your own, make sure to follow web design best practices and avoid making the following mistakes:

1.  Using a Template Design


For someone with no coding background and a limited budget, you might think that a do-it-yourself website builder is the most reasonable and empowering option right now. However, having a professional create a bespoke website for your business can provide significant advantages a DIY project can’t.  

The truth about using templates is that they offer very limited personalization options, and they’re rarely sustainable in the long term. The results of these tools tend to look very generic and they don’t provide features you can use to scale your website as your business grows.

Now, as a small business with hundreds of other competitors in your area, blending in is not your goal. You want to stand out, make a lasting impression, and be able to cater to the future needs of your customers.  

Unfortunately, you can’t achieve this with generic website builders. The chances of your website looking exactly like somebody else’s site are highly likely. So, if you’re serious about establishing trust, making more sales, and growing your business, it’s best to seek professional help!

2. Poor User Experience Design

Sometimes, small business owners and entrepreneurs forget that consumers today seek to have meaningful interactions and relevant experiences with brands. They tend to focus too much on creating a unique and out-of-this-world website that they forget the most important factor they should consider: The user.  

Take Google, for example. Its design is strikingly simple, yet it remains to be the most popular website in the world. Other competitors have tried to beat them by creating something fancier, but Google still reigns supreme.  

Now, why do you think Google remains to be no.1 through the years? Well, if there’s anything the company is incredibly good at, it’s putting its users first. Everything about Google is for the benefit of its users.  

A user experience design is user-centered. This means a website’s aesthetics, functionality and features are centered around a user’s needs, wants, motivations, and values. When user behavior changes, so does your website.  

Modern users hate unclear website structure, poor navigation, low resolutions photos, and bad calls to action. So, focus on the basics first and make sure you get them right before you move on to more advanced features.  

When designing your website, you should keep modern users in mind. You want to ask the following questions:

  • Can users easily figure out how to use your website?
  • Do web visitors have to relearn how to use your website each time they use it?
  • Does your website get the job done?
  • How long does it take to get the job done?  
  • Do web visitors want to use your website?
  • Do they find it delightful?

By making sure that user needs are being met through design, you create a positive user experience that will surely motivate them to come back for more.  

3. Using a Non-Responsive Design


We all know how important it is for a website to render well across devices, especially now that more and more people are accessing the web via mobile. However, many business owners and entrepreneurs in West Palm beach still haven’t adopted a responsive West Palm Beach web design.  

A responsive web design is an approach to web design that makes sure your page translates well on a variety of devices and screen sizes.

Did you know that Google’s algorithm favors mobile-friendly sites more than those that aren’t? In other words, you have a better chance of ranking well for local search if your website was optimized for mobile.  

Here are other statistics that prove how important using a responsive design is:

  • 61% of consumers are more likely to purchase from a business if it has a mobile-friendly site. (Brightlocal)
  • 66% of emails are viewed on a tablet or smartphone. (WebFX)
  • 70% of users are more likely to return to a mobile-friendly website (DesignAdviser)
  • 52% of PPC clicks are generated from mobile users (Wordstream)

Consumers want to buy your products and avail of your services, but you need to have a site that makes it easy for them to purchase what they want from their phones. If you’re not using a responsive web design for your site, you’re missing out on a great opportunity to get leads.

4. Poor Use of White Space

We’ve encountered a couple of clients who wanted to fill their website with media and content as much as they can so that they can get “the most” out of the space.  

To be honest, filling your page with so much stuff isn’t the best way to educate users about your products, convince them to convert, or make the most out of it. In fact, putting too much information on one page can make it look confusing and overwhelming.  

Smart use of white space can make a big difference not just in terms of aesthetics, but in actually pushing potential customers further down the sales funnel.  

Here’s why:

  • White space allows you to draw a user’s attention and provide direction to where you want them to focus. The contrast between negative space and your content helps a user identify better what they should be paying attention to and where they should be looking at next. This can be your content, call to action, or the succeeding step in a process.  
  • White space boosts a content’s readability, which leads to better understanding. The more a user understands the value you’re trying to convey to them, the more they can see your expertise in your field and the more confident they feel towards you. On the other hand, if your content is hard to read due to the lack of white space, chances are, you’ll lose their trust and will never come back to your site ever again.  
  • White space attracts the attention of users, while a compressed page scares them away. The longer a user stays on your page, the more they’re likely to convert.
  • Smart use of white space implies a well-thought-of and professionally made website. If you want to establish trust, build your reputation, and convince users to do business with you, white space is one of the major factors you should consider when designing your website.  

5. Use of Generic Images

Aside from using pixelated, low-resolution images on a website, another common design mistake regarding imagery is the use of generic pictures.  

If you don’t have the budget or photography skills to come up with your own high-quality photos, make sure you don’t use the same pictures that everyone in your industry has on their website.  Instead of picking the first result from an image search on a site, scroll a little deeper and find something that’s not commonly used by your competitors.  

Below are three reasons why you should avoid using generic or stock photos as much as you can:

  • Generic or stock photos misrepresent who you are as a company, your culture, and your team.  
  • The use of generic photos can make your brand feel inconsistent.  Since stock photos vary in style, feel, and color, using them throughout your site and marketing material can create inconsistent messaging and confuse your audience.  
  • Generic photos won’t help you stand out. If you want people to remember you, you need to give them something that will set you apart from your competitors, and the use of stock photos isn’t the best way to achieve that.  

6. Inaccessible Navigation

We totally get why you’d want to make your navigation menu unique to impress users, but you shouldn’t mess with their placement because it can disrupt your website’s usability.  

Modern users are accustomed to seeing the navigation menu in its standard place. If you try to tamper with the navigation menu even if it wasn’t your intention to make it difficult for them to find it, they’ll get frustrated and leave right away.  

As much as possible, make the navigational features of your site easier to notice and understand.  

7. Wrong Placement of Ads


Another design mistake small business owners and entrepreneurs often overlook is the wrong placement of ads.  

Although it’s one of the ways you can earn income from your blog or site, too many ads in the wrong places can make your site ineffective. These ads can become so annoying to the point that they disrupt the user experience and drive visitors away.  

When designing your website, carefully plan where you want ads to appear so they don’t overlap important information on your page and affect your site’s usability.  

8. Not Having a Favicon

A favicon is a small pixel icon located on the address bar of your browser. While a tiny logo may seem insignificant, having one can actually make a huge difference in terms of branding and improving user experience.  

Its main purpose is to boost brand awareness and recognizability, and it also helps visitors quickly find your page when they have dozens of tabs that are open simultaneously.  

If you don’t have one yet, get one now and incorporate it into your West Palm Beach web design!  

Looking for a West Palm Beach Web Design?

With the number of free and affordable website builders you can find online, designing your own website has never been this easy. Just make sure to follow web design best practices and avoid the top eight web design mistakes we’ve shared with you above.  

Although there’s no guarantee that avoiding these mistakes will make your website turn out exactly how you hoped it would, design-wise, you can still use it to turn a good website into a great one.  

If you want to make a good impression, establish trust, boost your PPC ads, and encourage visitors to convert, it’s best to commission a professional to create a bespoke West Palm Beach web design for your business.

At Digital Resource, our team of talented web designers can help you create a website that is not only tailored for your growing business’ needs, but also your target audience’s evolving needs.  

Contact us today for a free consultation!

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