7 Things People Hate About Your Website

Anything from a site that takes to long to load to an ill-placed advertisement can leave a sour taste in your mouth. Here’s a list of the seven things people hate most about a bad website. Read on, and tell us in the comments what you think takes the cake for worst website offense.

1. There is too much text

On average, users only read 28% of words on a page — so make them count. Provide text where it’s needed, but try to convey additional information in different, more dynamic ways. Outfit your site with pictures and informational videos. These engaging alternatives attract users, and can dramatically boost your conversion rates.

2. It takes too long to load

You’ve heard it a hundred times before: we’re living in a society of instant gratification. So when users click on a link, they want it to load — fast. In fact, 40% of visitors will leave your website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, which can have a huge impact on your bottom line sales goals.

Marketers should consistently check a site’s load time, and have resources on hand to evaluate and fix whatever slows the page down. Flexible cloud platforms can help accommodate spikes in traffic, or you can hire a DNS provider to proactively reroute traffic and avoid delays. Another common issue? The number of HTTP requests on a page — be mindful of how many download requests your site receives, and adjust your site’s infrastructure accordingly.

3. It doesn’t work on phones and/or tablets


People access content across all sorts of Internet-connected devices these days. In fact, 60% of all Internet usage occurs on mobile devices. So what does this all mean? Your site needs to be optimized for all screens, from an iPhone to a 27″ Retina iMac display. Design your site to be fully responsive so your customers can always access the page, regardless of what device they use.

4. There are annoying pop-ups

Not surprisingly, surveys found a whopping 90-95% of people hate pop-ups. It’s easy to see why: they interrupt the user’s experience on a website. Earlier this year, Google even addressed this problem by releasing an algorithm that penalizes sites with too many ads “above the fold.”

Make sure ads and registration forms are designed to be as unobtrusive as possible — make them smaller and easy to avoid if the user is not interested. Also consider delayed pop-ups, which only appear after the user has been on your site for a certain amount of time, or has scrolled to a certain point. Users with longer dwell time have already shown serious interest in your site, and are less likely to be deterred by an ad.

5. Videos that autoplay without my consent

Everyone knows the feeling: sorting through multiple tabs, trying to find the mysterious video pouring unwanted noise into your headphones. Reportedly the “most hated digital ad tactic”, autoplay is a feature that automatically plays video content when a user either lands on a site, or scrolls down to a certain point on the page. It’s a tactic for grabbing the user’s attention, but marketers should ask themselves if consumer frustration is worth it.

Take a page from Facebook and make the video silent until users decide to engage with content. That way, the video is still eye-catching, but doesn’t catch your customer off-guard with unexpected noise.

6. I have a horrible experience buying products


Many times a brand’s informational website is built on a completely different platform than its ecommerce portal, where customers go to purchase products. Separate platforms lead to a completely disjointed user experience — where clicking the “buy” button brings users down the rabbit hole to a completely new website.

It’s called “two-site syndrome” and it’s been proven to decrease conversion rates and aggravate customers. Marketing and ecommerce teams need to build their sites on a single, shared technology platform to avoid the disjointed customer experience, and make the online purchase process as hassle-free as possible.

7. I can’t contact customer service

A website should serve as a portal for two-way communication between a customer and a brand. But without contact information, consumers are often out of luck. Easy access to a customer service number or chat widgets can enable customers to speak with a company representative. These are hugely important assets to engage with customers, answer questions and garner feedback from your fan base.

I Write Things.