One Big Mistake To Avoid When Designing Your Website

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Stop thinking about yourself.

It may sound blunt. It may sound counter-intuitive in our social media crazed, put yourself out there for the world to see culture.

After all, Mad Crane Marketing exists to help you tell your own story.

But, too many small businesses and marketing directors are getting it wrong and falling into a common trap.

Remember our recent post about Gene’s struggles with the DIY platform to build his website?

He reminded me of the most important principle to keep in mind when considering how to design & build your new website:

Think about your customers.

Think about what they are like, what they are looking for and how they’ll feel when browsing around your website.

Again, you have to stop thinking about yourself first.

This can be hard to do and may sound like absurd advice. After all, you’ve got something special to share with the world and your shiny new website is the platform you want to build to share “you” with the world, right?

Stick with me here.

As Gene planned the layout of his new photography website, he was thinking about showcasing his awesome photography, the best of his best work. And, may I say, his work is awesome. His work isn’t just the snapshots your mom will toss up on the fridge regardless of the photographic quality.

Gene does great work.

However, with putting his best stuff front and center, Gene built a portfolio page with samples of his best images from residential real estate, commercial architecture, corporate headshots and senior portraits.

Makes sense, right?

Well, not when you’re thinking like one of Gene’s customers.

When a mom of a high school senior is searching online for a photographer to choose for her son or daughter's senior portraits, do you think she cares about the killer architectural work Gene shot with his large format camera?


She wants to see what is relevant to her situation. She wants to see how Gene can meet her immediate need: portraits that her family will appreciate for her budding, young high school senior.

So, when you’re thinking about how to arrange your new website or writing blog posts for your current website, stop and take a moment to think like your ideal customer.

What is top of mind for them at that moment? Make sure you speak to that concern.

What do they want to find out first? Make sure this information is front and center.

What other information might they have already read online or heard elsewhere before visiting your website? Make sure to continue the conversation with this in mind.

When designing a website, if your layout and content truly engages your target audience, you will have a site that ultimately drives sales for your business.