You’ve just updated the copy for your website, you’ve added new professional imagery, and you’re now looking experienced, slick and engaging. You’ve seen a boost in traffic but no increase in inquiries. You’re starting to think that the return on investment isn’t looking so promising. What’s going on… why are people leaving your site?
There could be a long list of reasons why your users are leaving your website but we’ve rounded the most popular. They say don’t judge a book by its cover but they didn’t say anything about judging websites. According to the Nielsen Norman Group, most users have left your website within the first 59 seconds visiting. If users aren’t spending long on your website, then finding out why they aren’t engaged is a great starting point.
5 Reasons Why Users are Leaving Your Website
Poor Website Design
The design of a website acts as your brochure, it is the first thing people see when they visit you digitally. If your website design is out of date and offers very little information, you should expect them to leave, and pretty quickly at that.
It’s important to remember that you should have a website that matches your values and ethos otherwise your customers may misinterpret the quality of your offering. Have you ever visited a website that looks old, uncared for and frankly confusing? Remember how that made you feel, as your customers may be feeling that way towards you.
You don’t need to overcomplicate the design to make it effective, taking a minimalistic approach can be very engaging and can help with the usability and content structure.
A study by Adobe says that 38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content/layout is unattractive.
Page Load Time
Even before users can judge you on the look and feel of the website, they need to load it first. A big problem with modern websites is the desire to feature lots of video and image content – however, if you don’t strike the right balance, your website will be slow to load. The recommended load time for devices is under 3 seconds.
Image Credit: Semrush
39% of users will stop engaging with a website if the page or images take too long to load. This applies to both mobile and desktop when designing or optimizing a website for your users – you have to first think about functionality, will it load on a poor connection? Not all your users will be on superfast broadband and have access to 4G.
Not only is poor loading times bad for user experience, but it will have a large knock-on effect on your SEO, meaning you will not be found as easily on search engines.
To help with initial loading times of pages you have to ensure that Images are cropped and optimized for the web.
Videos aren’t too large or are longer than they need to be unless you are loading it from a third party i.e YouTube or Vimeo.
Your website hosting is fast. Make sure you have purchased sufficient hosting for your websites needs.
By making sure that your website is fast, operational and has a high upkeep time, it means that you have a website for all.
Lack of Content Structure
Like a brochure, your website should have clear sections that are easy to read and find. If your content is not structured in this way or proves to be difficult for users to navigate, your potential customers will leave out of frustration.
With every website build, you should not complicate your website, like a simple design, content should be clear and in the relevant section that is easily found. This means that pages need to be organized into sections, there are headings in place for each set of paragraphs and a final call to action to push customers onto the next step.
It’s important that you have your customer journeys mapped out – without understanding what you ultimately want them to do, you cannot design your content structure appropriately. An example of this would be pushing your customers to contact you, this means your content structure needs to feature an action on every page.
Disappointing Mobile Experience
With mobile devices now accounting for nearly 2 of every 3 minutes spent online, it’s more important than ever to ensure their experience is the best it can be.
A bad experience of any website, whether on mobile or desktop, can leave users feeling disappointed and frustrated. If the website design does not cater for mobile devices users are exposed to oversized images, untouchable buttons, unusable contact forms and overlapping content.
With the sheer volume of mobile users, a bad experience on mobile will account for around 60% of your website traffic – a percentage you do not want to lose!
Bad Page Navigation
Have you ever been on a website that had an extensive menu that includes every page on the website and you find yourself getting lost in the menu alone? It’s not a great experience.
If you are going to use an interactive menu think of the size of your site first. If your website is large, then you want to ensure that you have the most important, top-level pages in the menu, which will, in turn, lead to the rest of your pages.
It is crucial that you do not over complicate your navigation and keep it simple on your website. You want all users to be able to navigate your website with ease, this means making clickable actions large enough to interact with (remember that these need to be large enough for mobile) and each page is in the relevant section where it is clear where they lead on to.
Now Stop Leaving My Website
So there you have it, our top five reasons for why people are currently leaving your website and how you can fix it.
In some cases, trying to patch an existing website is harder than starting from scratch as you not only have to fix but also you may have to implement new functionality. Once you have looked into these factors, it may be your next step to increase how many people find your website in the first place and this is where search engine optimization comes in.