These 12 Mistakes Are Killing Your Website Conversions

Sinoun Chea

The average company is getting a pitiful 2% website conversions rate while some are getting closer to 12% or higher.

Which one are you? Are you making common mistakes that can sabotage conversions or are you getting the conversions that your offerings deserve.

Find out by learning 12 mistakes that will kill your website conversions.

1. Thinking Emotion Isn’t Important in B2B

You build a new website for your business. You invest time and money into making it user-friendly and fast. You do everything to show potential customers that you value them as individuals. Then the unthinkable happens.

No one visits.

How do you feel? Sad? Angry? Betrayed? What did this short story just invoke in you — the level-headed yet passionate entrepreneur?

Emotion is not a girl thing or a boy thing. It’s not a B2C thing or B2B thing. It’s not just for Millennials or for Gen X.

It’s a human thing. It’s a connection that gets past the surface level and the defenses, reaching into what makes us human. And the better you understand how the customer feels, the more easily you can reach them.

Logic isn’t to be abandoned. You still need to make your case.

But if you’re not trying to connect to emotions, you’re making a big mistake and your website conversions will suffer.

2. Thinking That Your Site is Fast Enough

Is it really? Let’s take a closer look.

40% of customers will abandon a website that doesn’t load in 3 seconds, but the average business site takes 4+ seconds to load.

Consumers today expect mobile sites to load as fast as desktops and 40% will switch companies because they don’t provide a seamless mobile experience.

If they would switch companies, they certainly aren’t going to be ready to convert.

Unless you’re loading at 2-3 seconds today and 0 seconds tomorrow, you’re not fast enough. Keep working on strategies to optimize your site.

3. Octopus Purpose

Did you get a strange visual from that heading? Great! Do you see those octopus arms up in the air shifting and grabbing for anything they can get their hands on? Does this characterize your landing pages?

Big mistake!

Maybe you’re trying to get an email and sell something and asking them to download gated content all on the same page. Your logic… “Well, if I can’t get the sale at least I have X.”

Stop it.

Landing pages that get the highest conversions have one purpose and everything leads up to that one purpose so that by the time the customer arrives at the CTA, they instinctively take that next step.

Have a singular purpose for each page. If you have multiple purposes, create a page for each.

4. Not Knowing How to KISS

The KISS principle hasn’t changed just because we went digital. Brevity of thought, understandability of content, approachability, the power of single image —  it’s all still important.

Keep it simple, Silly. We would say “stupid”, but we want you to keep reading.

Put information in the simplest terms that will relate to your target while still demonstrating your authority in the industry.

This doesn’t, however, mean only creating super short content. Long form content is vital to both the decision-making process and search engine ranking.

But just because it’s long, doesn’t mean it’s not abiding by KISS.

Keeping it simple includes:

  • Breaking down ideas in an organized way
  • Clearly labeling those ideas to build anticipation (headings)
  • Having a good balance of white space and images
  • Using mostly shorter sentences to avoid stumbles
  • Being clear about customer objectives
  • Being clear about what you want to customer to do

Website conversions happen in that magical place where customer needs and yours unite. To find this sweet spot keep it simple.

5. Relying Too Hard on Gimmicks

It’s marketing 101. Don’t devalue your brand with discounts unless you plan to become a low price leader.

Most people don’t want cheap. They want value. They want to know that they’re getting their money’s worth. They need to see that your solution works both today and tomorrow.

Seeming to give away too much for free feels fake. People question your quality. It can make you appear desperate. People wonder what’s wrong with you. It may give you a temporary boost, but it kills your website conversions long-term.

Instead, offer discounts that reward people for buying more or doing things. Have them take a quiz or send in some user-generated content to earn discounts.

Don’t lean too hard on freebies and discounts to make website conversions.

6.  Asking Too Many Questions

How many questions are on your contact form? Hopefully, no more than 3. We have a tendency to want to get more information out of customers so we know what to expect before we call them, but this can destroy your website conversions.

If your goal is to generate qualified leads by obtaining an email, your form should have 1st name (given name), last name (family name) and an email.

That’s it.

Contact forms with three convert at a rate of 25% while those with six or more only convert at about 15%.

If you’re in a complex industry where 3 fields are just not enough, follow up with an email that has a short form to fill out. This way you have the email of someone that you know is interested regardless.

We lose website conversions when we ask too many questions.

7.  Not Aligning Your Landing Pages With Your Ads

How many landing pages do you have? While the answer may vary, you should have several.

Your ads should perfectly align with the landing page. If the ad made an offer, then the landing page linked to that ad should seamlessly promote that offer and nothing else.

As we discussed earlier, website conversions happen when you guide the lead through to the obvious conclusion. Any confusion of purpose can distract and derail a conversion.

8. Lacking Consistency Across the Website & Web

It takes 7-12 touch points before a conversion, depending on the study. Either way, today’s online customers interact with your brand multiple times before they convert. They may see you in:

  • Searches
  • Ads
  • Comments
  • Social shares
  • Your blog
  • Your guest posts
  • and so on

You have more control over some of these than others. Figure out where you have power and create as much consistency as possible across the Internet.

This might be in the form of:

  • Logos
  • Wording
  • Font style
  • Font size
  • Images
  • Colors
  • Layout
  • The way you do things
  • Navigation style

Don’t miss a touch point by missing an opportunity to be recognized. Develop a style guide and follow it to improve website conversions.

9. Poor Mobile Optimization

77% of Americans now own a smart phone. More than 50% of searches now take place on mobile. Mobile friendliness is a search engine ranking factor.

Being mobile-friendly isn’t a luxury. It’s now “mobile first”, not design your site and then make it mobile-friendly.

You are missing serious website conversions if your website is not built for mobile both on the screen and behind the scenes.

On the screen, your website should:

  • Have clear headings
  • Have short sentences and paragraphs
  • Limit videos or widgets that slow down the site
  • Have a simplified navigation system

Behind the scenes, focus on:

  • Limiting redundancy in code
  • Adjusting to various screen sizes without scrolling
  • Reducing file sizes while maintaining quality
  • Doing everything possible to speed up the site

10. Selling Before Building Trust

You’re selling the ever-elusive secret of life. If people knew what you have to offer them, they’d be flocking to your website and would pay any price you asked. But strangely, they’re not.


They don’t know who you are or whether you’re just “full of it”. Why would they buy anything from you? It doesn’t matter how great your products or services are if they’ve no reason to trust you.

If you’re trying to sell to people before they know who you are, you might as well be trying to convince people on the street that the sky is falling.

It seems so logical, but sometimes we do the opposite. We’re so afraid of losing this lead that we throw up a lightbox on the screen before they even know who we are.

“Back button!,” says would-be customer.

Build trust first. Then try to convert.

How do you do this?

Connect First
You can connect through humor, relatability, understanding of challenges. Provide them with content that adds value to their lives.

Manage Your Online Reputation
88% of people trust online reviews. 60% of online consumers now check reviews before buying.

You’re online reputation matters and shouldn’t be left to chance. Develop strategies to get more good review and promote those good reviews to build trust.

Track what people are saying about you and make changes when it makes sense to do so.

Living Up to Your Reputation
It’s a lot harder to try to outrun a bad reputation than it is to just do right by your customers. Manage the customer relationship and demonstrate that you are the right company to provide what they customer is looking for.

Trust translates into website conversions.

11. Attracting Low-Quality Visitors

You undoubtedly know the difference between a lead and a highly qualified lead. A highly qualified lead is ready to convert sooner rather than later. Low-quality leads are more or less a waste of time.

You can put systems in place to nurture these leads into higher quality leads. But they’re not the ones on which to place primary focus.

If you’re generating low-quality traffic to your website through bad SEO strategies, you’re in effect driving low-quality leads to your site. You website conversions suffer.

How do you drive high-quality leads to your site?

Meet Customers Where They Are in the Buyer’s Journey
Your website and content should be designed around the customer journey. All content and other marketing strategies should focus on meeting customers where they are and carrying them along.

Marketing to all points along the journey are important to continually feed the funnel with brand awareness, interest, etc.

But to increase website conversions now, you’ll focus on people in the decision-making process.

These customers already know what they need and why they need it. They just need to know why they should buy now and that you’re the one to buy it from.

Develop Keyword SEO Strategies Around Words that Signify High Intent
To reach these customers in these high convertibility stages, target long tail keywords that signal a readiness to convert now like phases that include:

  • Buy
  • Purchase
  • Discount
  • Best
  • Reviews

12. Not Optimizing with Analytics

Optimizing isn’t a feeling thing. It’s not about how long you’ve been doing this, what you’ve read or what you know. You can’t optimize without data.

Data should drive every decision and change you make to improve your website conversions. Otherwise, you’ll likely change things and then change them back, wondering why nothing’s happening.

What a waste of time!

Instead, you can use free analytics tools like Google Analytics and social analytics tools to learn more about:

  • How fast each page loads
  • How many visit your website
  • What pages they visit
  • How long they stay on different pages
  • Which social sites generate the most traffic
  • Which traffic sources generate the most traffic
  • Where people go on your website
  • What words they use to find you
  • What content generates

Begin making date-driven changes to:

  • The way to organize your pages
  • Topics you choose for content
  • How you express what you have to offer
  • Types of offers or packages
  • Images and visuals
  • And so on

You can take analytics further with more advanced and often paid tools and services that will give you greater insight into what drives your website conversions. These more advanced tools are a large part of how professional SEOs maximize their results.

Get More Website Conversions

Improving your website conversions requires understanding why customers convert and applying this knowledge to get more conversions. Focus on bringing the right people into your site — not just more people.

Effective SEO can do that.

Don’t try to figure out what’s working for you without data to support your decisions. This will save you a lot of wasted time and money as well as the cost of lost revenues while you’re trying to figure things out.

To learn more about how we can help you maximize your website conversions, contact us today.


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Sinoun Chea

I help small businesses Do Better Online™. When businesses thrive, people also thrive. #morethanjustbusiness

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