A healthy website is like a healthy body, and as the owner or operator of a site, you’re the immune system. It’s up to you to keep your site robust, resilient, and renewed. This means always looking for ways to improve, even if you’re already doing well. Here are four website health issues you can address this year.
1. Tiny Links
When looking for ways to improve your website, it’s best to assume the position of a new user with no experience with your site or your product. One thing that can immediately send this type of person packing: links that are too small to click on easily. Particularly on mobile, this can be extremely frustrating. You want the clickable area that leads to the linked page to be large enough that someone can easily tap it with their thumb to navigate there. A similar issue is links that aren’t clearly marked as links; you should choose a different font color or weight for links and adhere to it throughout your site.
2. Slow Performance on Mobile
In the first quarter of 2017, traffic from mobile devices surpassed desktop traffic to account for more than half of total website traffic worldwide, and this percentage has been rising steadily since. This means you absolutely need to optimize your site for mobile users. Even if you have a responsive design, your site could still be a headache for mobile users if it loads or performs too slowly. Run tests to see how your site performs on mobile, and remove processor-taxing elements from your pages if it’s not doing well.
3. Complicated Order Forms
People ordering products from your site want to do so as easily as possible, and it’s in your best interest to make it easy for them. If they’re on the order form, you’ve basically made the sale! Your site has worked. That’s why it would be a shame if an overly complex order form caused them to throw up their hands in exasperation and navigate elsewhere. Simplify your order form, including things like dropdown menus for states and auto-fill for zip codes. And if you’re looking to gather data from your consumers, you might want to offer them an incentive (like a discount or access to a special area on your site) in order to get them to cough up their information.
4. Crowded Design
You want the purpose of each page on your site to be immediately apparent. This means you might have to ditch all of the flashy images and typography on pages that are primarily informational. A good rule of thumb: if you’ve got a page on your site devoted to a particular type of content, you can get rid of that content on other pages. So if your site already has a tab on the home page for “Video,” you don’t need to embed the video on the page for “About.” Instead, include a small, unobtrusive link that curious users can click to get some visual stimulation.
You shouldn’t rest on your website’s laurels, even if you’ve got a good thing going. Always look for areas to improve, like the issues above, and your site will stay healthy and strong for years to come.