How to Make Sure A Potential Fan Never Comes Back to Your Website

Bad Website Practices“But wait – don’t I want them to come back to my site?”

Yes, you do. All the time. So don’t make their experience an awkward, annoying one, and they just might return for more.

It’s 2013, and the web-surfing public has lost nearly all patience for things on the web that don’t work/look/act right. They’re a fickle bunch, and they’re always one click away from ditching your site and never looking back. This doesn’t mean you need to have a site that is a non-stop carnival of excitement that no human could possibly drag themselves away from, but it does mean you need to have a site that doesn’t leave people rolling their eyes, shaking their head, or rage-clicking their “back” button.

Here are some things that might give people a great reason to run screaming away from your site, vowing never to return.

* Flash intros. It is not 2002. Lose it.

* Not being mobile-readyIf someone visits your site on their phone or tablet and it quickly turns into a game of expand-and-scan, they’re bound to bail.

* Hard-to-read text. This could be a result of some haywire color scheme, too-tiny text, or blocks of words with no discernible paragraphs or breaks. Getting people to read about you is hard enough; don’t make the actual process of interpreting the words a chore.

* Your site’s design is from the Stone Age. You don’t need the most cutting-edge web experience in the world to promote your music, but if it looks like you’re still using Angelfire (, people might question your methods.

* Rampant grammar/spelling errors. We’re all human, and nobody’s going to look down their nose at you for a few punctuation flubs here and there. But if your site is riddled with shoddy grammar and spelling, your being-taken-seriously quotient will be in a steady decline.

* Too many ads/overlays. When you click on a link for an article you want to read and it’s suddenly obscured by a big pop-up asking you if you want to join an email list for daily updates, how does it make you feel? This is an honest question. Some people don’t mind them. Some people loathe them. Keep this in mind before implementing something similar on your site.

* Auto-playing music or video. I just checked, and it is still not 2002.

* Bad nav. People should be able to find what they’re looking for on your site in five seconds. If they can’t, you are doing something wrong navigation-wise, and people probably won’t bother to dig around.

* Lack of updates. Don’t let the cobwebs gather. It makes it look like you’re running your operation out of a ghost town. And those are scary.

* No social sharing. This one’s probably not as big a deal as some of the others I’ve listed, but the omission of easy-to-use sharing buttons might strike some readers as a little behind the times.

What are some of the things that make you instantly dislike a website? Share your thoughts with us the comments, and don’t hold back!

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