Your business website should act as your shop window; we’re taking a closer look at the world’s worst website to highlight what to avoid…
The competition is stiff in online business. First impressions are everything, so you need to tick every box for an aesthetically pleasing website. Providing a seamless shopping experience for your site visitors is of utmost importance, and a powerful web hosting solution and some attention to detail behind the scenes should be top of your website building list. However, how your website looks is key to encouraging your site visitors to click through, reaching the checkout and ultimately making a purchase.
The self-styled ‘World’s Worst Website Ever’ (TWWWE) is an aesthetic catastrophe. Between flashy graphics and an over-use of font colours which should be left in the ‘90s (cyan blue anyone?), the site boasts an array of web design blunders. An ironic ode to bad web design, TWWWE states that it is “a project to highlight errors in web design by breaking every single design rule imaginable”. Appropriately, even this disclaimer is hard to find amongst the garish design of the page.
So what web design lessons can be learnt from ‘The World’s Worst Website Ever’?
The aim of your website is to entice the customer, not give them a headache! Be consistent in colour choices with both font and background. Any text should be of a consistent size and font style which is easy to read and digest. In TWWWE’s list of web design errors, the creators state that:
- Blue on red is a bad idea
- Red on blue is a bad idea
- Blue or red on black is a bad idea
Take a look at this blog post to find out more about what the colour of your website says about you. We would advise playing it safe and sticking to monochrome colours, with added warmth from the addition of cosy colours. Whichever colours you opt for, be consistent and use them throughout your site.
Any self-respecting online business venture should avoid flashing animated gifs wherever possible. A staple of terrible web design, animated icons slow down your website for visitors (which can damage your search engine ranking) and detract from the main aim of your site: to sell. Focus on your product or service when designing your website, and remember that flashy animations will detract from the professionalism of your venture.
Construct a sitemap
TWWWE is filled with a mash of broken links which lead to a range of unrelated pages. Make sure links are clear, precise and correct. Your sitemap should be easy to navigate, with clear links to checkout throughout to encourage purchase at every opportunity. A lack of correct links leads to a decline in selling points on your website, which should strictly speaking be a selling machine.
Remember: links are best embedded in buttons, which give a concise ‘call to action’. Learn more about how to use the call to action to maximise on sales by reading this blog post.
Use high-quality images
If your site is to feature images and photography, be sure to invest in high-quality, well-formatted images which are directly relevant to your site or product. Showcase your products or services with professional imagery if you need visual representation, but remember that large images will carry long loading times, causing your site to slow down.
Remember that content is king
A cliché though it may be, content truly is king. Your website copy must be meticulously checked to root out any spelling mistakes and to ensure it reflects the personality of your brand. All written content should be kept to a minimum so each word has great value. Keep your content to bitesize chunks which are easy to digest and will engage your chosen audience; consult your brand DNA for a style guide.
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