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Website conversions: 6 mistakes you should avoid

In this article, you will learn which conversion mistakes you should avoid at all costs on your website and what you can do to sustainably increase website conversions.

Website conversions are essential for anyone who sells their products or services online. Traffic alone does not make a customer. Only when visitors take a desired action the goal is reached.

What are website conversions?

A website conversion results from the occurrence of a desired action that has been defined in advance by companies as a goal. This can be, for example, the conversion of an online store visit into a purchase, but also the registration for a newsletter, content downloads, or the click on a certain button can be website conversions.

More traffic and website conversions with SEO and CRO

Several disciplines contribute to the optimization of your website and more digital success. Two that go hand in hand are Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO).

While SEO in its original sense aims at improving the visibility and traffic of the website, CRO is about increasing the conversions on the website. The two areas thus have different main goals, but there is a reciprocal effect between them:

A well-optimized website that is considered relevant and trustworthy by search engines is attractive to users, which can increase conversions. On the other hand, a website with a high conversion rate can be considered more relevant and trustworthy by search engines, which in turn can help improve visibility in search results.

So it’s worth considering both SEO and CRO if you want to increase your website’s ROI. The following recommendations are primarily intended to help you optimize your website conversions, but will also get you further in search engine optimization.

6 website conversion pitfalls you should avoid

A website that is easy to use and relevant to the target audience is the basic prerequisite for achieving your conversion goals. Here are 6 conversion killers you should avoid along the way.

1. Slow loading times

Slow loading time is one of the most common mistakes that can affect the conversion rate of a website. Users usually have little patience and will quickly leave a slow loading website.

Apart from the fact that no conversion can then take place, this is also bad for search engine rankings. After all, visitor behavior is a factor that search engines take into account when evaluating a page. If bounce rates are too high, the page will likely rank lower and lose valuable traffic in the future.

The reasons for poor loading performance can vary widely. Possible causes include servers that are too slow, images that are too large, poor coding, or a slow WordPress theme.

You can check whether your pages load slowly with tools like Google’s Page Speed Insights or with the Web Performance features of the Ryte platform. To improve load times, it’s always a good idea to optimize images and other media and remove unnecessary plug-ins and scripts.


Figure 1: With the Ryte Load Time Report or the Web Vitals Report, your website speed can be conveniently checked.

2. Unclear call-to-action buttons

Call-to-action (CTA) buttons are an important part of any website conversion, as they indicate to users what they should do next. However, if they contain unclear or misleading text, they can negatively impact user behavior.

That’s why it’s not necessarily recommended to display CTAs as links. Instead, you should choose buttons that are highly visible and appealing. Also, the choice of color, shape, and placement on the website can have a significant impact on conversion rates. Therefore, it is essential to test different versions and compare results. Here are a few tips on how to do so:

  • Make sure that the buttons are highly visible and easy to find without users having to search for them for a long time.

  • Use clear and meaningful labels for your buttons that show users exactly what they can expect when they click on the button.

  • Experiment with different button designs to see which one works best. This includes the size, color, and look of the button.

  • Add reviews, customer testimonials, or other forms of “social proof” near the buttons to build users’ trust in your brand and encourage them to click the button.

  • Test and measure your actions. Run A/B tests to find out which button designs and labels work best.

3. Lack or absence of mobile

Mobile optimization of a website is important for both SEO and CRO, as more and more users tend to use the internet via mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.

If a website is not optimized for mobile devices, it can become difficult to use – as a consequence abandonment rates increase, which in turn sends a negative signal to search engines.

For your website conversions, mobile optimization is therefore vital. If users have difficulty using a website on their mobile devices, they are less likely to perform a desired action on the website.

To ensure that users convert on mobile devices, you should take care that website content is displayed correctly and legibly on mobile devices, that clickable elements are not too close to each other, and that buttons, forms, etc. work properly.


Figure 2: Ryte’s Accessibility features assist in checking mobile website optimization.

4. Poor navigation and missing search function

The navigation on a website plays an important role in website conversions, as it helps users navigate the site and find the information they need quickly and easily. However, if it is unclear or poorly structured, it can be a deterrent and keep users from staying on the site and converting.

Therefore, make sure that the navigation is clear and understandable and uses a logical structure. Use clear and meaningful labels for navigation elements so that users know exactly what to expect and make important functions (contact, checkout, etc.) easily accessible. In online stores, depending on the size, the navigation should also be complemented by a search function.

The search function can help users quickly and easily find the information they need on the website. But beware. If the search function is unreliable, visitors may get frustrated and leave the site. Make sure that the site’s search function is easily accessible and reliable.

5. Lack of clarity on the offer

We often invest a lot of time and money in the design of a website. Unfortunately, too little is thereby spent on the content. The quality of the content has a direct impact on search engine optimization and the conversion of users into customers. After all, if users do not immediately understand what is offered on the website, they will leave the site and look elsewhere.

This makes it all the more important to highlight your company’s unique value proposition. What do you offer? What can your company do that others can’t? What else is important for your target group? With vaguely formulated texts without a clear message, objective, and added value for the reader, you will have a hard time achieving conversions and good rankings. Only those who focus on the needs and interests of their target group will be able to convince visitors.

One of the biggest mistakes in website optimization is neglecting keyword research. If this is not done, you leave it up to the search engine to decide which keywords your website will rank for.

So instead of just writing away, you should have keyword research based on your content strategy before creating content. Then, make sure the website’s offer is unique. Put yourself in your audience’s shoes and use personalized content and specific recommendations to make visitors feel like the site is just for them.

6. Lack of trust indicators and security

Users are more likely to convert to a website if they feel that the site is trustworthy and secure. Online stores in particular should therefore focus on trust-building measures.

It is important that users feel safe on the website. If users do not feel that their personal and financial information is safe, they may not convert. Therefore, make sure that the website is equipped with the latest security measures and that users are aware of them.

To build trust, customer reviews, safety certificates and other indicators of confidence are your means of choice and can be placed prominently on the website. If you additionally take care that customer reviews are passed on to Google via structured data, the reviews will be displayed in the snippet and thus increase the attractiveness in the organic SERPs.

Final thoughts on website conversions

For many companies, website conversions have become a fundamental part of their concept for success. However, growing competition is leading to ever higher expectations on the part of customers and search engines as well.

Some industries are so fiercely competitive that websites have to be optimized down to the smallest detail. This makes it all the more important to avoid the above-mentioned website errors and conversion killers in the first place. To what extent the measures ultimately will increase conversions on your website is very individual and can only be determined by testing the above measures.

Start optimizing your website with Ryte!

Published on Jan 27, 2023 by Jost Bettinga