Big Red SEO’s Worst User Experience Gaffes, Part 2

November 29, 2013
by Kimberly Treacy

    Big Red SEO gaffesOur SEO team in Omaha knows that even minor mistakes in web design can have huge effects on your bottom line, so in this post we’re going to go over some of the very unfortunate blunders in website building that often get overlooked.

    In Big Red SEO’s last installment of Worst User Experience Gaffes, we talked about some of the common techniques websites use in the hope of closing leads that actually do more harm than good. Hopefully by now you’ve taken down (or moved to a later stage in the sales funnel) that in-your-face sign-up form that’s been scaring customers away and put your business contact info front-and-center where everyone can see it. These are solid web design tactics that make it more likely that visitors will spend their valuable time with you! For more useful tips, check out our Worst User Experience Gaffes Part 2 below.

    4. Nobody (and we mean nobody) likes pop-ups

    Maybe our collective hatred of pop-ups is irrational.

    Maybe some alternate universe exists where you really can Win That Free iPad!, where users of this strange world’s Internet fidget in eager anticipation of sighting a pop-up, but in this reality that’s not the case.

    Here, pop-ups have gotten a bad rap for a reason—in the past they’ve bounced around, flashed in epilepsy-inducing primary colors, and even talked to us in their sorry attempts to infect us with viruses. Our Omaha SEO and web design team believes that this stigma persists today, where even the most well-meaning pop-up that only wants to give you a helpful tip or usher you down the conversion funnel will be swatted away like a fly.

    So even if a pop-up could serve a useful purpose today, visitors to your site will only be irritated to see one. If you are a pop-up fan and want to use them anyway, try adding one to an internal page or set a timer past three minutes!

    5. Your site has a Flash intro

    When someone visits your site, chances are they’re interested in getting an answer to their question quickly, because let’s face it, we’re all busy and have a hundred things to do during the day. Keeping this in mind, our Omaha web design team highly recommends giving your customer complete control over their experience on your site. If you have a video to show, don’t force it on your visitor—chances are they’ll simply click to skip it, and if they’re in a hurry you’ve just risked annoying them! Or even worse, they might get busted shopping during “business hours” due to your video playing automatically with their volume on.

    In our view, the bottom line here is that convincing someone to voluntarily view your video (by explaining its value to them before they watch) will always be better than throwing it at them and hoping they sit through it. For conversion-oriented pages, it pays to consider what the customer wants from their site experience.

    6. Your stock photos don’t pull their weight

    There have been many eye-tracking studies to understand how site visitors react to the visual elements in a website design, and the results are in:

    • Visitors pay close attention images that convey content messages. These include photos of products or of real people.
    • They completely ignore non-informative photos or graphics, including “fluffy” stock photos. That means that no one puts much “stock” (haha, ahem) in that photo you just bought, you know the one, of that model triumphantly pumping her arms in the air after successfully placing an order on your site.

    So what can this teach us? Although eye-catching photos are still an important element in web design, visitors appreciate graphics with a purpose. So before you go filling your pages with images that simply look good, our Big Red SEO team believes you should think about how your potential customer will view them. Do they make sense to use? Are they conveying some necessary information? And if they’re photos of people, do those people look real?

    Contact Big Red SEO Today at (402) 522-6468!

    Hopefully these pointers will help you avoid making some of the simple mistakes that really annoy your potential customers. If you have any questions about this post or SEO and web design in general, feel free to give us a call today at (402) 522-6468, or fill out our quick contact form. Our Omaha SEO team has learned through experience how to design a website that will wow your customers and take you to the top of search engine rankings!

    Kimberly Treacy


    Kimberly Treacy (Talbot) is an SEO Guru with a ‘no bullshit’ attitude. As the owner of Big Red SEO, she provides companies of all sizes what they need to know to get their business in front of those looking for their services and products. Big Red SEO is one of the few search engine optimization companies that offers ‘industry exclusivity’ meaning we only work with one company within an industry and their market at a time.