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7 Hidden Causes Why Your Website Fails to Retain Visitors.

by Jeffery Opoku August 15, 2023
Website Retention

You’ve designed this awesome website and pretty much have some content on it. You’ve got your product or service images displayed. Everything seems fine to you. 

Visitors should be stopping by now and then, right? Your website traffic should increase by the month, right?

But, that’s not the case. You aren’t getting the amount of traffic you want and people just seem to come and go without returning.  

What could be the problem? Why aren’t your visitors sticking around?

Are you familiar with the saying, “If you build it, they’ll come?”

When it comes to a website, you don’t just build it and expect that it’ll troop in. Certain factors come into play if you want to get that desired number of traffic.

Don’t think because it’s appealing to you, customers will feel that way too.

Is your current website generating the right amount of visitors and sales?

A poorly designed and difficult-to-navigate website can cost your company thousands of cedis.  

Attention spans are short, and the internet is a big place. A fast website speed means more engaged users, increased conversions, and returning visitors.

In this blog, I’ll give you 7 good reasons why people are leaving your website. 

Some of these reasons include:

  • Outdated design
  • Your website is not mobile-friendly
  • Poor content
  • Too many ads
  • Cluttered homepage and poor navigation
  • Slow load time
  • No call-to-actions

Seven reasons why people leave your website:

Outdated website design

The first impression of your website must be good. 80% of prospects visit a website before deciding to work for them.

A statement like “first impression counts” also applies to your website. Like it or not, design matters. So if you go about designing your website to have the look and feel of a 1998 or early 2000 design, visitors won’t stay that long. And I bet you, they won’t return either. Website design appearance plays a major role in keeping visitors engaged and making their return to your site.

Given 15 minutes to consume content, two-thirds of people would rather read something well-designed than something plain.

  • Use simple and clear fonts
  • Use better images
  • Change your theme once in a while

Your website is your digital shop window, keep it fresh and exciting always. Where’s the first place people go to learn more about your business? Your website!

If the first impression they have about you is good, they’ll come back. But if it’s not, they might never consider doing business with you. Giving visitors that ‘wow’ factor nudges them to keep coming back and makes them buy from you.

With customers’ needs changing, it’s important to keep up with recent trends. What once felt trendy can feel out of style the next minute. An outdated website is a guaranteed way to get visitors running from your site as fast as they can.


The website is not mobile-friendly

Always remember that people aren’t just visiting your website from their laptops or desktops. A majority of Ghanaians search for you on their smartphones.

  • More than 20% of Google searches are done on mobile devices
  • 50% of mobile searches lead to the purchase
  • 48% of users say they feel frustrated when they get to a site that’s not mobile-friendly
  • 40% of people have turned to a competitor’s site after a bad mobile experience

If we spend more time online on our mobile phones, it’s only rational that you optimize your website for mobile responsiveness.

Source: Business Ghana

Ghanaians spend more time shopping online on their mobile devices. It’s only natural to design your website with them in mind. When your website is mobile-friendly, users will be more at ease using it. This makes the user experience much more convenient. Thus, increasing the possibility of your visitors staying and browsing the content.

If your site isn’t responsive to mobile devices, you stand a greater chance of losing out on organic search engine rankings. Also, 50% of mobile shoppers leave a transaction if it’s not optimized for mobile.


Poor content

Only 10-20% of readers are making it to the bottom of your post

Here’s the truth: people rarely read online. They skim or scan.

You might write a blog post of over 2,000 words. But, if it’s not of value or importance to your readers, they’ll skim through or not even read at all. Let’s face it, human beings are mostly distracted. And with social media notifications and emails popping up now and then, it makes it hard to concentrate on one thing for a long. If your content can’t grab their attention and engage them, people will keep coming but they’ll never stay or return.

To make your content readable:

  • Use clear images
  • Include headings and subheadings
  • Use bullet points

People are easily distracted online. If your content can’t grab and sustain their attention, then your site will see a high bounce rate whether you like it or not.


Too many ads

People don’t like it when you crowd your website with too many ads. One, two, or three is cool but having like 5 or 6 popping up, it becomes annoying. I get it, you’re looking for new signups and subscribers. You want people to buy your product/service. But having too many ads isn’t going to help. Rather, it’ll disrupt the user experience and irritate users.

[Looking to audit your website for improvement? Check out this blog on website auditing to learn a few tips.]


Poor Navigation

Having lots of information on the homepage can confuse visitors, making them unable to know the next step to take. An overcrowded homepage will turn your visitors off.

Don’t you hate it when you struggle to look for information on a website? There are too many drop-downs and menu bars that you get lost searching for information. Visitors like to browse and get information with ease. A good navigation menu should guide users. It shouldn’t be cluttered with too many images or links.

How easy is it for visitors to navigate your website? Are there clear directions on where they should go for more information? Can a visitor find what they’re looking for without having to dig their way through it?

If the visitor can’t move from ‘who we are’ to ‘contact us’ with less hassle, they’ll become frustrated and look elsewhere.

Your homepage should be simple and link to the main sections of your website. The navigation bar should be visible and links appropriately placed on the homepage content.

Which of these homepages do you find attractive and user-friendly?

A) bad website simple



Sidekick Digital Website

Does the first or second promise a good user experience?

It’s the second one!


Slow load time

What’s the longest you’ve had to wait for a page to load? Online visitors don’t have the luxury of time to sit and wait for your site to load. If it’s taking too long, visitors will leave and move on to another site.

40% of visitors abandon a website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load.

Let’s look at this example:

If you went to a restaurant and the waiter took a long time to deliver your order, how would you feel? Let’s say it’s your first time and instead of being treated nicely, your food takes minutes to arrive.

Will you feel unwelcome, unwanted, and angry? You’ll think that’s the way they treat all visitors/customers. And if you had plans of bringing a friend the following day, you’d change your mind.

That’s almost the same experience visitors have when they encounter a slow website. Time is of the essence to customers and if they feel you’re wasting their time, they’ll hop on the next fast website.

As I mentioned earlier, online visitors don’t have time. So, instead of waiting for your site to load, they’ll move on to another site that loads faster.

Every second counts with your site’s loading speed. The longer it takes for it to load fully, the more visitors you’ll lose, even before they see your content.

The longer your site loads, the more visitors you’ll lose.

Tips to improve your site’s loading speed:

  • Upgrade your hosting plan: Upgrading your hosting plan can have a considerable positive impact on your website’s page load speed. For a start, try increasing the bandwidth and storage space.
  • Reduce image size: Like it or not, images have a tremendous effect on your website speed. Large image sizes will make your site slow. Try to reduce the size of the images on your website so your page can load fast. 

You can use free tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or Pingdom to test your website’s page load speed. This will tell you how fast your site is and offer suggestions for improvement.


No Call-to-action

You can’t blame visitors for leaving when you don’t tell them what to do. You might have a well-designed website but if you have no call-to-actions (CTAs), visitors will leave your site without taking the action you wanted. A call-to-action (CTA) is a piece of content that gets the viewer to take action.

If your site impresses visitors, they’ll want to stick around and know more about what you’re offering. They might even decide to get in touch with you. But, if there are no CTAs to lead them on or show them the next step, they’ll leave disappointed.

In conclusion, your website is the gateway to your business. Creating and leaving a lasting impression gives visitors a reason to return/come back. What’s the current state of your website? If you feel visitors come and go without returning or converting, this might be a good time to consider redesigning your website. By addressing these issues on your website, you should see major changes in your website’s performance.

Mind you, these aren’t the only reasons visitors leave your site. If you have another tip or suggestion, kindly drop your comment below. We would love to hear from you.

Are you having challenges building a well-designed and optimized website? We can help you build a website that not only attracts but converts too.

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