There are good websites and there are poorly designed ones. When web users becomes irritated with a website, they will quickly log out and find a more user friendly website.
Things that irritate web users
These things should be avoided:
- Hidden charges or costs on a website can be very annoying for web users, this can lead to your potential client vowing to never return to your website or use your services again. This is true for those websites that are used to sell goods and services.
- If you are offering services, goods or information and there is no phone number available on your website, it can become extremely frustrating for those visiting your website and looking for extra information. A working contact number or email address is crucial for the survival of your website and business.
- Oversized adverts can irritate the web user. This is especially the case when the advert breaks the texts and forces the reader to scroll down and find where they were reading on the page.
- Flashing, spinning and brightly coloured boxes can be distracting for the reader, this is old fashioned and should be avoided at all costs. They take the readers attention away from what is really important. See our page on the Importance of white space.
- Pop-up windows can irritate the reader, especially if they have found what they are looking for, but get interrupted by a pop-up window that they are not interested in. Very common for adverts.
- Websites that are not consistent in terms of the font, design, colour and information can also be irritating and appear a little amateurish.
- Websites that do not promise to fulfil a specific function can also irritate the user. This is true for those websites that serve an informational purpose. Web users will become annoyed if they cannot find exactly what they are looking for and what the home page promises.
- Old, out of date and irrelevant content or information can also be frustrating and irritating. This will cause your potential reader or client to look elsewhere for information. Be sure to update your website regularly and keep all the information current and relevant. Change your content so that the readers have something to look forward to and it will keep them coming back for more.
- Moving and exploring the website should be easy to do. The most important elements of your website should be easy to navigate and find. Be sure the links will take you where you want to be and that the home page and other links are visible and easy to use. Navigation needs to be carefully considered to keep your website user friendly.
- A website that takes too long to load can be very irritating especially in a world where time is minimal. Be sure that your website has a short download time. If your viewer is kept waiting for longer than 15 seconds they will become frustrated and go and look for something else.
- Liquid designed websites can be very irritating for the web user, as it involves scrolling from left to right to continue reading and exploring the website. Be sure that your website is readable and usable on different browsers.
- Music, too many images and pictures can irritate the web user; this is because it will cause the website to load slower, as well as cause distractions and make the web page too busy and cluttered, making it difficult to read. Remember to keep it simple.
- Big introductions with flashy graphics and animations can also be annoying; this is because most people don’t have time for all the flash and glitz. Most people will skip the expensive introduction to your website.
- It is very frustrating to think that you have found the ideal website only to read “Sorry, we are under construction”. Rather remove the website from the internet and allow it to go live once it is ready to. Remember that all good websites are constantly under construction. Never use the “We are Under Construction” as your home page.
- Search boxes should be visible and easy to use. There is nothing more annoying than not being able find the search box, when you are researching or require specific information.
- Fonts and text should be readable. Be sure to avoid using dark backgrounds as it can make it difficult to read. The colour of the background and the text should compliment each other, making it easier to read quickly.
- Dead links will infuriate your readers, be sure that all your links end up where they promised they would.
- If your website requires your viewers to fill in forms and subscribe to your website, they may become irritated as it takes extended periods of time to fill in these forms. They will look for information elsewhere.
- External links should open on a new window, so that the user does not lose the original website.
- Websites should be user friendly, if they are too difficult to navigate the user feels overwhelmed and silly, and will look elsewhere.
The reason you have a website is to use it as a tool in your quest to improve your business. It is crucial that your website increases your profits and business, and does not irritate the web users to a point where they refuse to use your website. Be sure to use your website to your advantage. Follow these tips to ensure that your visitors stay focused on what you are offering. Never irritate your visitors; your website is often the first impression they have of your company.