wordcamp / 10 annoying things on websites that people hate

10 annoying things on websites that people hate

Andy Thorne
Hero image for blog called 10 annoying things on websites that people hate

“It seemed like a good idea at the time!” This could well apply to several website design features and functions that are absolute folly. They may look good, but they drag your website down, some of these features could be hindering your overall websites user experience. There are hundreds of usability issues that affect websites but here are our 10 most annoying things on websites that people hate.

Some seemingly clever marketing ‘whizzes’ are counterproductive, and get people clicking away from your pages!

Preferences and tastes never stay static. Consumers are a tricky bunch to pin down, especially as each company has its own unique ‘target market’. (Let’s be honest, contemporary consumers are a picky and fickle bunch generally!)

You could integrate something into your website that’s a huge turn-off, even though another company used it to good effect! Or, a website design tool that made an impact for a while, can go out of favour. It’s why regular website upgrades and refreshes are so vital.

Here are our top 10 annoying things on websites that all users hate!

1.Multiple pop ups

Multiple pop ups

Ask yourself, how many websites are your bombarded by with multiple pop ups?

This is a great example of a feature that can help or hinder positive visitor engagement and User Experience (UX). A strategic pop-up – such as an exit notice – can be effective.

In fact, we have found that an exit intent pop up is one of the most effective pop ups to use. The key is to catch your users before they leave and claw them back in with an offer.

The problem comes when pop-ups are prolific, repeat too frequently or are plain nonsensical.

Website users hate having to keep shutting down intrusive mini windows and their next click is likely to be away!

2.Fully justified text

Fully justified text on computer

For those site users with dyslexia, justified text a substantial obstacle for reading.

There’s increasing awareness of the importance of accessible website design. Pages must be as clear and compelling as possible for differently-abled users.

Yet, one of the worst website design flaws could be ‘hiding in plain sight’. Fully justified text can be clumsy for anyone to read, but for site users with dyslexia, it’s a substantial obstacle.

“To avoid the unsightly gaps caused by justification, sophisticated page layout programs use a variety of factors – hyphenation, spacing between words, spacing between letters, and even slightly wider or more narrow versions of the font – to balance each line of text.” – design for hackers

3.Ecommerce websites that expect too much info

There are several ways ecommerce sites put up obstacles and undermine User Experience. One is to require registration or even an entire account set up, prior to any transaction. Users will be at best reluctant and at worse highly suspicious. It’s far better to let them check out as guests.

Jared.M.Spool allowed customers to continue on e-commerce websites rather than registering to access the results were phenomenal. “The number of customers purchasing went up by 45%. The extra purchases resulted in an extra $15 million the first month. For the first year, the site saw an additional $300,000,000.” – The three hundred billion button

4.Autoplaying videos

Auto playing video on mobile

Auto playing videos are increasing the chances of your visitors immediately bouncing off your website.

Make this a double ‘oh hell, no’ when it comes to media with sound!

Around 50% of your visitors (and growing) click on your site using mobile phones. Setting aside heavy data use, they could well be browsing in public, while resting or even in the toilets at work!

These are just a few of the reasons that autoplay media is highly unwelcome and will have people closing you down rather than finding the stop button.

5.Long-form fields

long form feilds

We all want speed and convenience, long form fields provide us with the complete opposite experience.

On a similar note, asking too many questions on any digital form can become a User Experience pitfall.

Modern consumers want speed and convenience. They are happy to provide information, as long as its purpose is clear, and it doesn’t take up too much time! Keep forms simple, to the point and optimised for mobile phones.

Mobile users only have their 2 thumbs, not 10 fingers like they do when on desktop or tablet! For example “If you want my email address, please use the email keyboard. It doesn’t require me to do anything special to enter “@”, “.” or “.com”.” – Why your mobile visitors dont buy from your ecommerce site

6.Hamburger menus

Hamburger icons

Their overuse (and inappropriate application) on websites can result in confusing navigation.

The pros and cons of hamburger menus can cause a ‘tasty’ debate. They are a design icon that saves space, by creating a block of three lines (resembling a hamburger construction) to hold a menu.

Their overuse (and inappropriate application) on websites can result in confusing navigation and site visitors having no idea what the hamburger is for.

Don’t make the mistake of assuming that your users will know the hamburger opens a navigation menu.

A simple way to solve the hamburger issue is to add the word ‘Menu’ above or below the icon.

One of the biggest downsides to using a hamburger menu is that it doesn’t showcase an app’s features very well. 25% of apps get deleted after first use. – The ultimate guide to the hamburger menu

7.Carousels and sliders

Sliders and carousels

Carousels are distracting visitors from achieving their initial goal when entering your website.

These are another design feature that can leave visitors seriously underwhelmed. They were a popular addition to homepages for some time, creating banners of ever-changing images.

However, having something transitory and ‘unstable’ is now considered a turn-off.

Especially if you see an image or post of interest, then have to search for it or wait for it to come back around!

Take a read at the 6 points Conversion Optimization have outlined as to why you should not include a carousel on your website.

  • Whisking away copy while it was still being read
  • Randomly changing calls to actions
  • Removing control from the user actions
  • Creating “banner-blindness”
  • Periodically attracting attention no matter how irrelevant to the viewer.
  • Slowing page load time with multiple big images

8.Button and links that don’t look like buttons or links


Make your buttons contrast more by adding a different background colour.

This one comes under the category of ‘trying too hard’.

Elaborate and flashy website designs that are ‘clever’ can sometimes fail to meet basic business objectives.

Forget ‘thinking outside the box’ if it means a confusing layout and hard to find Calls to Action.

So, make your buttons look more like physical buttons by adding a contrasting background colour, a bit of 3d and even a subtle drop-shadow.

When it comes to links, make them blue (or a contrasting colour to your site’s text) and give them and underline. Hey presto! That will help your users know that it’s a link and are therefore more likely to hit it.

9.’In your face’ Live chat

Live webchat

Chat bots are the digital equivalent of a sales assistant who follows you everywhere around the site.

Chatbots and other devices to help people interact with you online are to be applauded.

However, if your LiveChat panel pops up continuously, inappropriately or too enthusiastically – taking up a large chunk of the screen – site users will click away to avoid it.

It’s the digital equivalent of a sales assistant who follows you everywhere.

10.Slow website loading pages

Slow loading pages

Slow loading pages can be the quickest way of losing your visitors, this can cause frustration for a lot of users.

In our list of ten ways to turn off website users, this is one of the quickest ways to lose your audience. Site visitors expect swift loading times, and responsive website designs that function brilliantly on all browsers and devices. You snooze, you lose.

Amazon found that just a one second delay could cost Amazon $1.6 Billion in sales – head here to find out why

Have you checked your load speed performance recently? If not head to Google’s page speed tool and enter your URL.

For help evaluating your website’s performance and ‘lovability’ give the team at Factory Pattern a shout. We can turn annoying website features off, to switch on higher conversion rates.