Design Mistakes That Kill Conversion


Picture this: you hired a digital marketer to keep your strategic efforts going. You uploaded your content in your blogs section and scheduled to update it more than once a week. Your shopping cart is working just fine, your social media integration also works wonders. SEO is also on the spot.

But why are you not getting the conversions you were expecting?

Have you considered checking your web design again? Are you sure it still adapts well to this generation’s needs and expectations?

The constant development of web design software made it possible for even the non-techiest person to create stunning websites for their new e-commerce business and experiment on its look to fit today’s taste.

But aesthetics is not the be-all and end-all of web design. User experience (UX) and user interface (UI) designs also play crucial roles in translating leads into meaningful sales conversions

Why is conversion important anyway?

Conversion rates tell you the percentage of people who visit your website and take the time to explore, purchase an item, or read through your posts. They are the ones who take action and have the potential to put something in your cart and generate sales. This is important in ensuring that your investments in creating a website is effective, and whether or not you should change your existing digital marketing efforts.

If you think you’re not achieving enough conversions based on your goals, it’s probably time for you to check your website design for the best customer experience. Improving customer experience with a better web design will surely lead to a boost in sales.

Here are things you need to watch out for—and how to remedy them—to help you achieve your goals in terms of conversion.

1. Not mobile-ready

If you think web design is all that matters, think again. It’s the very first thing your customers see when they come and pay your website a visit.

And here’s a bigger challenge for you: how your website will look in their mobile devices will matter very greatly. Google itself is moving towards a mobile-first index approach to continue building a great search experience for all users.

If you fail to design your website in a way that fits the standard of mobility, there’s a lower chance for customers to come back to your website and even recommend it. As a matter of fact, 60% of users won’t even recommend your company if it has a badly designed mobile site.

What you can do:

Use mobile-friendly templates. Making the website mobile-responsive is not an easy task; you’ll need professional help to get it done. What you have to do is look for the closest mobile design you have in mind and apply it with the help of an expert. When you do this, you don’t have to change anything in terms of content. This also helps in optimizing your SEO, because you no longer have to limit the content you already have in your website.

Make all important information easy to locate. If you’ve tracked the behavior of your audiences when they are in your website, you would know the places they usually go to. Are they looking more at your FAQs or your ‘About Us’ section? Are they always looking to contact you? Find out and make sure they are in places that’s easy to find on mobile.

Never use Flash animation. You don’t want to slow down your average page loading so avoid using Flash. Besides, neither Android nor iOS devices support Flash, so there’s no point in adding them to your website.

Make button sizes huge enough for customers to see. Small icons work on desktops, because the cursors are there to help them make choices. That is not the case with mobile. Make sure that your icons are large enough for customers to easily click them so they won’t have to make an extra effort in zooming them in.

2. Slow loading time

We’ve been told countless of times that loading time matters especially when it comes to creating a mobile-ready website. But how do you actually achieve it?

Slow loading time will cause page visitors to abandon your website for good—in fact, it only takes 3 seconds before they head off to a different website that offers just what you have. That means lost sales opportunities and reputational damage.

So how do we counter that?

Compress images. Being mobile-responsive is all about speed and efficiency, so make sure that your images are compressed enough to load your pages faster. Compress anything that takes up a lot of space, particularly images and CSS.

Evaluate your plugins. Plugins can definitely help you make your website more hardworking, but putting in too much features will only make your website run slower. Poor, outdated plugins should be removed as they can slow down your website’s performance dramatically.

Take caches seriously. Page caching allows web pages to store static files, making it possible for visitors to access those pages more quickly. Just remember to ask your first-time visitors to accepts caches upon logging in so that your files can already load faster on their next visit.

3. Use of cliché stock photos

Remember that your visitors are inundated with too much content that they have seen almost everything. That includes stock photos found on the internet, whether sold for free or with a charge. Some designers fall into the trap of using meaningless photos that have already appeared elsewhere on the net. To remedy this, why don’t you…

Create your own content. Nothing beats images that are authentic and personalized. Your visitors want to see fresh, new content that are relatable to them, so it’s best that you take your own photos and make sure they represent your brand well.

Edit your images. If you don’t have the luxury of time for a full production, add a personal flair to your stock images, at least. Editing your images can help visitors recognize your brand especially when you add brand elements to it such as color, theme, or stickers. Just don’t overdo them to avoid turning customers off.

Or encourage customers to engage. Make it a side gig on your social media accounts to ask customers to send their own photos for a special prize. This would not only give you more content; it also increases you customer engagement.

4. Text-heavy

Apart from images, you also need to eliminate unnecessary texts. Remember that you are aiming for a mobile-ready website, so the lesser your texts are, the better.

Make sure you get your copywriting right. We don’t just mean lessen your content—we want you to revise it to adapt to today’s mobile content demands. This means impactful, converting copy without looking like a wall of text. The challenge is getting to write short copy without affecting SEO, so you will need an expert writer to help you strategize that.

Use short content to catch attention. Both short and long content can help a website. What you have to remember is that short content is advantageous when you’re trying to capture your audience’s attention, while lengthy articles should be in your blog section to add depth and clarity to what you’re trying to say.

5. Unclear navigation

Navigation creates a path for your customers to keep them exploring your website. Without it, customers will leave your website for not finding what they were looking for.

This is also where your calls-to-action play critical roles. Make sure you have a CTAs in every page to keep customers intrigued with what your website has to offer. Here’s more of what you can do:

Use search autocomplete. Some visitors already know what they are looking for, so they will look for your search bar. Help customers get what they want by autocompleting their search upon typing the first few words, just like how Google does it. This is also a good way to suggest related products or services for customers to get more than what they are actually after.

Utilize internal links. Keep your visitors busy within your website by leading them to the other related pages. This would not only help customers get more out of your site, it also helps you offer more than what they initially need. Consult your analytics data to curate the pages that have the highest traffic. Then, lead your customers to those pages and help boost the others that need more attention.


Designing your website is more than just making it aesthetically appealing to your customers. You also have to work on user experience to make sure you get the conversions you’re trying to achieve. Don’t be afraid to explore what works for you and what doesn’t. Constantly innovating your website is so much better than letting it stay stagnant while your competitors are catching up on the latest best practices.

If you’ve got anything to add to the list, let other readers know which design mistakes you’ve committed and remedied in the comments section below.

Author: Michie Victoriano is a Marketing Research and Analyst with more than 8 years’ experience in Marketing, Research, Analytics and Online Marketing; with a 3 years’ experience in Search Engine Optimization. Currently working for and Enjoys playing video games, basketball and loves coffee too much.