10 Things Not To Do When Building Your Website - Blogging, Small Business, Web Design & Hosting Tips - A Small Orange

10 Things Not To Do When Building Your Website

Web development can be a tricky process, as striking a balance between content and design can be very challenging. This is especially true with the staggering number of options out there for optimizing both. After all, a beautiful intuitive design is not beneficial if there isn’t quality content to communicate the message, and the best content in the world won’t draw in users if it’s presented or laid out poorly. While it is important to know best practices on what to do when building a website, it is just as important to know what not to do. With that in mind here are 10 things you should NOT do when building your website.

Generally, Don’t DIY

If you’re not a professional or at least well-versed in web design yourself, it’s best to leave it to someone who knows what they’re doing. We can definitely help you if you need it. You can contact our 24/7 to help get started and walk you through some steps. If building by yourself seems to be too much, you can ask our designers to do the work for you.

Don’t Make Users Hunt- They Won’t!

A good layout is key. Websites should be easy to navigate and easy to find things in. If they’re not, users will get frustrated and may look elsewhere on the internet.

Don’t Expect People Will Just Come

The “if you built it, they will come” mentality doesn’t serve anyone in the online world, least of all someone wanting to promote web traffic. Brush up on competitive SEO techniques and get yourself linked on other relevant websites. Or if you’d prefer more instant results, maybe try PPC.

Don’t Spend Over your Budget

There are, of course, fees and surcharges everywhere, but it’s best to be aware of them in advance. Don’t let yourself be over-charged – a good website should cost around $1000 from a freelancer or a few thousand from a professional agency.

Don’t Keep an Empty Blog

If you’re not going to use a blog (which, honestly, is a different web venture entirely) don’t include one. By having one that is empty or rarely updates, it looks like your site is outdated or inactive.

Don’t Try to Target Everyone

Your website needs to offer a solution to a specific problem. While your solution or product may not work for everyone, identify your target audience that it specifically works best for. You can then aim your content at that specific group using short and long-tail keywords. If you try to please everyone and don’t identify a specific target audience, you are likely to please no one.

Don’t Use Flash

Flash is not compatible with all devices, notably the iPhone, and it can cause your site to lag while loading. To make sure that all potential users can access all elements of your site, avoid using flash and opt for HTML5.

Don’t Subscribe a Visitor Without their Consent

Word gets out about these things, and besides being a little shady, it will almost always ensure that your website is blacklisted by anyone with good sense.

Don’t Require Registration

An up-front registration will turn away a lot of potential users. Save registration for things like newsletters, mailing lists, and ordering products.

Don’t Play Music

Web developers, especially in the early years of the internet, often tried to embed music on websites. This ended up being regarded as annoying at best and incredibly disruptive at worst. If you absolutely must play an audio file, make sure the user can start and end it whenever they like.


Keep these 10 website DON’T’s in mind when building your site, to ensure you don’t turn your visitors away before they can learn what you have to offer!

Are there any tips that you would like to add? Please let us know in the comments

  • “Don’t Ignore Mobile”

    Lots of the templates available, particularly for WordPress and Concrete5 (and more specifically, Concrete 5.6), and most especially the older free ones, tend to assume a fixed minimum width for a viewing space. This is usually 960px, sometimes as wide as 1024px.

    A 7″ tablet or ‘phablet’ (e.g., the Samsung Note or the new Amazon Fire 6″), in portrait mode which is most comfortable for reading, can be as narrow as 600-800 pixels wide. If you’re using one of those older templates, this can result in your readers having to constantly slide left-right (AFTER having to two-finger zoom) in order to read the content at all.

    When hunting for templates in the marketplaces of these apps, be sure to look for the keyword “responsive” to know that you’re getting one that is mobile-capable and adaptive to these narrower sizes…and you probably should still test it out on a mobile screen first before purchasing.

    • (or use the capabilities of Concrete5 and WordPress to serve up a different template to your mobile users – Concrete 5.6 and 5.7 both make this pretty easy in their system dashboards)

    • Kyler Patterson

      Great information – Thank you Joe!