5 Tips to Diagnose Your Website for Problems That Confuse Visitors

by | Author Website | 2 comments

“In an endless jungle of websites with text-based content, a beautiful image with a lot of space and colour can be like walking into a clearing. It’s a relief.” —David McCandless (data-journalist, and information designer)

image by bykst

image by bykst

I think watching what your website visitors do is important.

Tip 1: Make sure your visitors take the action they think they’re performing.

I learned that a visitor had come to my blog and thought she’d subscribed to Follow my Blog Via Email. She had subscribed to my newsletter.


image by geralt

About that time, I found out I wouldn’t be able to announce my blog on an email loop. I invited those on the loop to subscribe to my email notifications. Immediately, someone signed up for my newsletter. An aha moment. My Newsletter sign-up was at the top of my blog sidebar. I immediately moved the Follow my Blog Via Email to the top of the sidebar.

Why was this important? After all, I’d acquired subscribers to my newsletter. But suppose they didn’t want another newsletter coming into their inboxes. Not realizing they had signed up for my newsletter, they may mark my Newsletter emails as spam.

Tip 2: Remove events promptly when events you’ve announced on your website have passed.

I have a countdown calendar I use for events. Letting it sit with zeros from the last event, suggests I’ve neglected it. On my calendar on the day after the event, I need to schedule time to change it to my next event. If I don’t have an event coming up, I can set it for the next conference or workshop I plan to attend.

image by Body-in-Care

image by Body-in-Care

The same goes for my Speaking/Events page. Leaving these events on the page for a week past the event date to show what I’ve been doing is probably fine, but after that, my events are old news and my page looks neglected.

Tip 3: Refresh information.

My Home page had a prominent announcement that advertised the availability of my novel, Calculated Risk. It said, “Available November 2014.” The same announcement resided on the page’s sidebar, my Book page, and my Blog sidebar. My husband suggested I change it. As November 2015 approaches, some visitors may see only “November” and think Calculated Risk isn’t available yet.

Tip 4: Try updating, moving, or adding content on your sales page.

On my Books page, I think my endorsements by other authors may speak to readers better than other content. Yet, I wondered how often visitors read to the end of the page where the endorsements for Calculated Risk lie. So, I moved one to the top.

Also, on my For Readers page, the fun book trailer resided after the content, which is a repeat of my Books page content. I moved the trailer to the top for visitors to enjoy.

Tip 5: Cut clutter from your pages.

image by Biedermann

image by Biedermann

Busyness tends to overwhelm visitors. I keep my pages simple and to the point, with plenty of white space. However, after reading today’s quote above, I added a picture to my Book Club and Speaking/Events pages.

5 Tips to stop confusing your website visitors. Click to tweet.

What adjustments have you made to your website that made your content clearer?

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American Christian Fiction Writers

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  1. marilyn leach

    Thanks Zoe. I’m on the right track with my website. That’s encouraging. Cheers

    • Zoe M. McCarthy

      Excellent, Marilyn. I keep learning things and that keeps me reviewing my site.

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