Today, the branding experts at How to Build a Brand are talking about how poor website design is detracting from your brand-building efforts. It may be negatively affecting your visitors’ experiences – and your bottom line.

We understand that you’re the creative type (so are we), and that you want your website to be unlike any other. You might decide that adventures in navigation will engage your visitors…but stop there – consider how this might negatively affect your site’s usability.

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TO BUILD A BRAND, AVOID DROPPING WEBSITE VISITORS INTO A MAZE.

Your website is not the place to challenge visitors. Instead, it is the place to build your brand by making visitors’ experiences memorable, yet simple and easy-to-navigate.

Build a Brand with Straightforward Web Design

As you build a brand with an online presence, learn from these website design mistakes that can foil your branding-building efforts:

  • Hazy Explanations:  The titles of your page links should be self-explanatory, without users having to question what might be at the other end.
  • Hoop Jumping: If you think your product is wonderful enough to justify asking users to perform circus acts (complicated navigation and registrations, for example), guess again. Most would rather buy a lesser product with greater convenience.
  • MMN (a.k.a. Mystery Meat Navigation):  If readers must mouse over nameless icons to determine where those icons will lead, you’re complicating your visitors’ experiences. It’s bad enough when someone can’t predict where a named link will take them, but it’s even worse when that link is not named.
  • Poor Contrast: If you’ve ever squinted at your monitor trying to absorb information from a website that has chosen to place its grey content on a white background, pink text on a maroon background, grey words on black…you’ve either suffered from eye strain or a severe case of click-away. Do your visitors a favour: Allow them to read your content.
  • Duh links:  Links that lead nowhere (except back to the current page) make your navigation system appear sloppy.
  • Fact-Finding Mission: Visitors to your site should know exactly what you’re promoting, selling, or offering within four seconds of laying eyes on your homepage. Few people enjoy conducting research for the sake of research. Woo them to click on your URL, but once they’re there, give them what they want…fast.
  • Disorderly links:  Put your page buttons or links in an order that makes sense to the needs of your visitors, not the bragging rights of you or your company.
  • Variety-pack navigation:  Stick to one type of navigation, rather than varying it throughout the site ‘just for fun.’

The less your website resembles a labyrinth, the more click-throughs it will enjoy. Take it from us: How to Build a Brand have seen too much website design that doesn’t cater to the user – and therefore doesn’t add to the bottom line.

There you have it: the worst web design saboteurs. Your intentions may be good – in fact, we’re sure they are – but if your web design is self-serving or if it disregards the comfort and convenience of your visitors, those intentions will never be fully realised. 

Contact us on +44 (0) 208 123 6776 or [email protected] for information about how to build a brand with easy-to-navigate, straightforward web design. You may also wish to connect with us on Twitter or enrol in our FREE 6 Step Brand L.E.A.D.E.R. System.

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