The Reasons Why Websites Fail

Over 25 years ago, the World Wide Web was just an idea. A crazy idea to some, but then Tim Berners-Lee changed the world forever by creating a few lines of code.

Boom!

People could connect from around the world. 🙂

Since then a lot has become reality and new websites, businesses, and platforms are created everyday.

It’s never fun to build a website only to have the doors close a few months down the road. I’ve built thousands of sites over the years and I know all too well what it feels like to have the site fail.

Why do sites fail so often?

That’s the question I am going to answer in this post, giving you some insights as to why and how to avoid those causes with your own website creations. Enjoy.

Buyer Behavior.

With every new product and service we create as business owners, we leave out one important aspect — buyer behavior. You see, since the beginning of website development not much has changed. Yes, we have better shopping carts that suggest you buy more stuff related to your purchase, but nothing significant has changed.

Websites have come to be a machine when they should act as a human (or human-like). When you go to a department store you’re far more likely to connect with the physical store than connect with its website while shopping online.

A website’s job is to just sell to you 24/7/365, but what it will never do is connect on a deeper level. A lot of people tend to build a website without thinking about the end user in mind.

Yes, what you sell might be good, but having a website is about giving value rather than taking someone’s credit card to be charged. And I don’t mean value in the form of selling your product or service, I mean value in the form of completely free stuff.

The free stuff could be an eBook, video series, blog posts, or whatever else. If you have a business that you’re trying to sell anything, you need to give away your most valuable stuff for free!

Wait, what Scott?

Yes, you heard me right — FREE! Getting someone in the door is hard enough, but when they leave empty-handed it’s going to make your job ten times harder to get them back. It’s why a lot of highly successful businesses offer you something to get you into their email newsletter.

Why is that?

Well, that’s because they can tell you about their new offers through email; if you give value first and then ask for a sale later, you’re going to have your site’s doors open much longer than trying to sell, sell, sell. My friend Gary Vee has a great outlook on what I am talking about, he calls it the “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook.” The “Jabs” are where you offer free value by giving content to your audience and the “Right Hooks” are where you ask for the sale.

If you use this philosophy you will gain so much more traction with your website. As a matter of fact, you should use this simple idea for all your efforts on not only your site, but also your social media accounts, newsletters, videos, and everything else you create.

Make It Personable.

Most websites that are created make everything exactly the same. How boring, right?

When you create your site, you should go the extra mile and make things that will stand out to different kinds of people. If you want to go even further, you can make different newsletters for people to consume.

You see, when everything is plain Jane, you will have a lot of people landing on your site that will leave without thinking twice. Everyone that comes to your site has different needs and interests. Your website needs great content plus context.

Value-giving content that has EPIC context will give your visitors a more personalized and delightful web experience that will keep them coming back for more.

For example, let’s say you visited a site to book a vacation — when you visit the site for the first time you’re welcomed, asked some questions about your dream vacation, and then you fill out some other stuff to book your vacation. After you’ve gone on that vacation you later visit the site for a second time and the site treats you the exact same, as if you’ve just visited for the first time — how boring and not personable whatsoever.

If the travel website made it personable it might say something like — Welcome Back Scott! How did you enjoy your vacation in Hawaii? The site could also go on to tell you that people who visited Hawaii also went to these locations.

You see, nothing has changed as the site is still a vacation site, but the simple “Welcome Back” message stands to make the visitors feel warm, like they’re important, which they are. Think about the ways that you could make your site more personable. A lot of sites like to have popup banners that ask the visitor to subscribe and often times the visitors do subscribe, but when they leave and come back to the site that same popup comes up.

Not only is this annoying as hell, it’s not giving the visitors a personable experience. Websites often fail because the site owner doesn’t think about how the visitors will interact. A great example is thinking of a department store; the entire layout of the storefront is thought out beforehand (if they’re smart).

Even gas stations that know their customers place their inventory in a certain layout and that’s because they’re trying to not only make it personable to the visitors, they’re trying to maximize their business growth. Websites work in the same way.

Good websites will have a home page that loads fast, have a single call to action, and tell the visitors they matter in a personable way. When the visitor comes back for a second time, the site will change depending on the action they took the first time they visited.

Take a look at Netflix which will show you all the stuff you might be interested in alongside the stuff you recently watched.

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Netflix makes the experience of using their service personable and I believe that’s one of the reasons why it’s loved by millions of people.

Make your site personable and you will see your options, revenue, and interaction 10x.

Mobile Matters!

It’s nothing new that mobile phones are a big part of our everyday life. People use their phones these days for almost everything and that’s where a lot of sites die off because they don’t think their site needs to be mobile friendly.

The bottom line is that you MUST make your site have a mobile version otherwise you’re more or less telling people you don’t want their business.

If your website doesn’t load a mobile version on smartphones and tablets, it’s much like telling people that have hair to leave your store because you only accept bald people.

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Almost everyone has hair and you shouldn’t be pushing those people away because you’re too lazy to get a mobile version of your site. I still see businesses that make millions a year have no mobile website and I can guarantee they’re leaving high margins on the table simply because they don’t catch up with the times.

Mobile matters and it’s not going to change so get caught up with technology and get your site working on mobile.

Conclusion.

When it comes to websites you need to use your common-sense knowledge. Don’t use terrible colors, popup ads, and things that annoy the hell out of people.

If you’ve ever visited a site and thought “that’s annoying” chances are you shouldn’t replicate what they’re doing. Yes, a popup banner that asks “GIVE ME YOUR EMAIL” might get more options into your newsletter, but is it making your visitors feel like they matter?

Most likely not.

Think about using a popup that gives value and make it have context. Give them something that is truly worth a damn because when all you ever do is ask for something without giving first, you’re shooting yourself in the foot.

Last thing to keep in mind is to stay up with the changing of times. When something new comes out and starts to change the landscape of the web, you should start implementing it into your own website efforts. A great example is mobile; like I mentioned, a lot of businesses don’t have mobile sites and they’re losing out on business big time by not catching up with the times.

Don’t be stubborn when it comes to technology.

Please share your site link with me in the comments. Tell me what do you like about your site? Tell me what you could improve? Would love to hear about your thoughts and sites.

Thanks so much for reading. 🙂

Scott “value giver” Hurtado