5 Things You Don't Need On Your Website
Sometimes websites can feel cluttered with unnecessary elements that not only make it seem busy, but are wasting other people’s time. Going through your site and doing a clean up is necessary every now and then, such as removing stagnant pages that you're no longer using anymore, even if they're hidden, broken links, any old events that maybe you are showcasing on your website, get rid of it.
This is because simple is better, especially for websites, but in general, you don't need a bunch of junk cluttering up your site.
1. ‘Home’ in your navigation
If you’re taking up space in your top navigation for a button that says ‘Home’ you’re wasting valuable real estate. When a user comes to your site they will most likely scan over your navigation, so make sure you’re promoting your most important pages here e.g. portfolio, services, podcast/blog, contact page, etc.
2. Date stamps on blog posts
If you are posting content that doesn’t go out of style or become dated, e.g. evergreen, then just remove date stamps from your content. This is because it will help the content travel longer and farther. As if you’re promoting your content on Pinterest where it can be popular for months and you a user visits your site months after it went live, they might assume it’s out of date and click back.
I really recommend removing them just to keep users thinking you have fresh content every time they visit your blog posts.
3. Long paragraphs
You don't need super long paragraphs on your site, or anywhere. Some visitors will read your site, but all visitors will scan and that's just kind of a fact about your website.
So if you're doing the work to have people come over to your site, you're paying for traffic, it’s so important to keep them around. You can have like places where you have longer length content, such as your blog, but when it comes to like your services, e.g. testimonials talking about what you do, how you do it, all of those things, you want to keep them in a format that is really appealing to the eye.
So if somebody were to scan through your site, which again, majority, I'd say about 99% of site visitors are going to scan your site versus sit and read through longer length content then you want to make sure that they're getting the information quickly.
4. Stock photos
I understand if you don’t have any personal brand photos taken then stock photos are brilliant, but the over-used images are so obvious. They have perfect lighting, spotless offices, casual, but serious - obviously not real.
So if you’re filling your entire site with stock photos it’s time to remove them and replace them of images of you, your work, and your personality. Of course, a mix of both you and stock photos is ok if you don’t have enough of your own images, but don’t fill your entire site with clearly obvious stock imagery.
5. Dead Ends
This might be one of the most important pieces of this whole post. You don't want dead ends on your website.
This means if someone submits a contact form, you don't want them to press submit and just get a thanks, go check your inbox message. Because then what happens is they get the thank you and then they're left with that. They’re thinking where do I go and what do I do? They’re just going to leave.
But we want to maximize the amount of time that they're spending on our site, even if they're contacting us. Let's say you’re a designer or a photographer and somebody submits a contact form to work with you, you then thank them and send them to a blog post, or you send them to a free resource that you have or even your gallery.
This keeps people flowing through your site longer rather than letting them leave straight away.
Curious about what you must-have on your website? Take a read of my top 10 recommendations that you should have on your site. And if you’re thinking how am I going to get time to tweak my website, I recommend my clients to set aside time. Whether that's like two hours on a Friday morning or whenever in your week, look at your calendar and literally put into your calendar.