Start / Website guide / Website maintenance / Why do visitors leave my website

Website maintenanceWhy do visitors leave my website

Why do people prefer to go to some shops rather than others? The reasons are the same in the real world as in the online world.

Michael Mai, 11.04.2020

Picture of a beautifully tidy garden

Overview

Services and prices

Let's shift this question away from the virtual world into the real one for now.

In real life, how do companies lose prospective buyers? Why do guests leave a restaurant without ordering? Why do shoppers with an interest in buying leave your shop without buying?

It's not always the price war.

It is due to insufficient service, loss of trust and a language that is not understood. Before a prospective customer turns away from us, she or he has many small frustrating experiences beforehand, which in sum have led to the decision not to pursue your offer any further.

Frustrating experience Slow website

Imagine an Internet user searching for something. On the move with a smartphone. Fortunately, Google lists your website far in front. Yay! Now your prospect clicks on the link and what happens? At first nothing, then the page slowly builds up. After 20 seconds, you can finally see something. Doesn't sound like much time? Then you don't know mobile users very well. Most of them are already at the next hit.

One of the reasons for long waiting times is that websites are hosted by cheap consumer hosters. Although you only pay a few euros per month, you share the space on completely overloaded servers. The technology simply does not manage to load your website quickly. The same applies here: "Buy cheap, buy expensive" - because you pay for a few euros of savings per month with the frustration of your visitors.

Just imagine: On your city trip in a metropolis, you want to go out for dinner after an interesting day in a lively restaurant and pub district. You choose the first restaurant at the beginning of the street, the menu in front of the door is to your taste. Your mouth waters and you enter the restaurant. It is very crowded and there is no table available at first. OK, you are hungry, but you wait patiently. After a quarter of an hour, a seat becomes free, but unfortunately there is no sign of the service staff far and wide. After another ten minutes, someone shows up, frantically hands you the menu and runs away again immediately. There are obviously far too few waiters for the large restaurant, everyone is overworked. The nightmare for every hungry visitor. You fear that you will have to wait forever for your food and prefer to go next door to the kebab restaurant...

Frustration Content

With many websites, you often get the impression that "the main thing is to have lots of text for search engines". Creative copywriters write their hearts out to place the latest "buzzwords", but forget one important thing: after a few seconds, the visitor's head starts to "buzz". All they can read is "blah blah blah and blah".

Most self-representations are also not particularly conducive. Of course, you want to know who you are dealing with. But it is often exaggerated. Nobody is interested in your life story and that of your employees, and certainly not in any certificates that nobody knows.

If you are still willing to read what the website has to offer, you are often overwhelmed by technical terms. What is supposed to convey expertise often becomes a boomerang, because the implicit message here is: "I have power over you thanks to my expertise!" - Is that what you want to convey to your visitors?

Imagine this: You go to the technology shop of your choice and want to buy a television. The nice saleswoman does not take you to the TV department but first into a room where you are shown three different presentation films in which it becomes quite clear why this discounter is the very best in the world. Then she shows you her school-leaving certificate, the school-leaving certificates of all her colleagues, all the adult education certificates and a slide show of all the further training courses with cheerful group pictures and points out once again quite clearly that everyone here is totally cheerful, can do everything and do it immediately.

Once you have got through this, you will be taken to the TV department. There you will be bombarded with technical terms such as DVB-T2 HD, DVB-C, DVB-S2, Smart-Ready, Ultra High Density - UHD and DLNA standard. The sales assistant doesn't ask you any questions, but you have to start making up your mind now, the shop is about to close ...

Frustrating experience Programme error

Most websites these days are based on so-called content management systems (CMS). This is the software that takes care of how your website is built and how texts, images, PDF, etc. can be comfortably planted on the website. This software and everything around it, is constantly being developed and improved by the manufacturers.

You as the owner are therefore obliged to constantly update the website and the environment. Otherwise, errors will inevitably occur at some point. Small errors manifest themselves, for example, by the fact that the design of your website is no longer displayed as it was at the beginning, there are display errors. In the case of larger software errors, the entire website fails.

If your website software is not regularly updated, it is a popular target for hackers. WordPress is a particularly popular candidate due to its widespread use. As a result, your website is no longer accessible and, in the worst case, your visitor gets a Trojan or virus on their computer.

As a website owner, you then not only suffer a catastrophic loss of trust, but can even be held liable in case of negligence in case of doubt.

A defective website has significant negative consequences on your positive external image and the trust you want to build through this medium.

Incomprehensible websites

Even if your website runs on state-of-the-art distributed high-performance servers and the pages appear blazingly fast, the greatest frustration arises when information cannot be found. Have you ever searched for a specific form on a portal and given up in frustration after five minutes? That is the extreme case. But all the time, even on small websites, there is the situation where your visit is accidentally sent to the wrong department. It is also enough that your visitor has to find out for himself which department he has to go to. Even if they are only small moments of frustration, they add up and at some point a potential customer has disappeared.
Building an accurate, targeted user experience is a long process. What are my visitors actually doing on my website? Do we have the right priorities? If you can't answer these questions, you run the risk of losing customers.