What you think about your website could very well be a potential disaster waiting to happen.
Because it’s almost certain that you are not your target visitor. You’re a creator/e-commerce merchant/brilliant mind behind the business or start-up, but you are most likely not your target audience.
Let that one sink in for a minute.
You are not your target audience.
The sooner that you get that, the better off you will be.
Sure, you probably have some good ideas, some may even be great, but their value is so little as to be non-existent if those ideas aren’t focused on your end users.
So, who’s opinion really matters? Your target audience and your users.
Do you know who they are? If you don’t then you really need to get some help so that you can get some clarity on what you’re planning to do (or have done). Just because you saw a fancy feature on a website you liked, doesn’t mean that it will work in the same way for you.
Maybe it’s time to step out of the DIY world and work with a web designer. They can help you understand the important details of calls-to-action, conversions, and usability along with design features and how they apply to your target market.
If you don’t know what those things are, or have only heard of them, it’s probably a pretty good indication that you should at least talk to a designer. Listen to them and let them help you work through your design ideas to see if they’ll work, and listen to them if they tell you it won’t work.
If not a designer, then do some research about users and how people interact with websites. Find out what they like and don’t like. Find out what they’ll use and what they won’t use. Find out what they’ll click and what they’ll ignore.
Because it’s not about you.
Don’t take it personally. It’s not meant to be. But you need to get out of the way, and start figuring out how the real people in your target market are going to interact with your website.
If you have some grand idea about some revolutionary feature that no one has ever thought of, odds are you’re wrong, and there is a good reason no one is doing what you’re thinking about.
It’s not that there isn’t room for innovation and creativity, because there is.
The point of the matter is that your users are the primary ones you should be thinking about.
You want to build your site so that it’s easy to use, not cluttered by unnecessary graphics and images, and that it loads fast (not to mention that your content should be awesome).
The most popular websites are the ones that are focused on delivering answers to questions the users are looking for and they’re the websites that get used. They don’t have to have a bunch of slow-loading images and graphics, they just need to do what they’re supposed to do.
Doesn’t matter if it’s Craig’s List. Or Amazon. Or Facebook. All those sites have things in common. They’re not dressed up with a bunch of stuff they don’t need, that get in the way. They’re built with the end-user in mind, and are connected to the business’ overall goals.
So take some time and think about it. Do you know what your visitors and users want?