Sure-fire Signs Of An U.G.L.Y. Website

No business sets out to have an ugly website. But with 3 out of 4 people judging a business’ credibility simply by looking at its web design, perhaps ugliness happens more often than we’d like to admit. And in today’s world of digital marketing, the company site and its design are paramount to driving traffic and generating quality leads. So, businesses must know when and if their sites are showing sure-fire signs and symptoms.

There are multiple things customers tell us about our websites often without actually telling us!

If you’re wondering how entirely possible this is, understand this one thing: Consumers and online visitors speak loudly about your site based on how they interact with it. Subsequently, conducting an analysis report on your website will help you understand the messages they’re sending.

You’ll learn:

  • How often do people visit your site
  • Is it popular and relevant to their needs
  • What page or pages do they view the most
  • Which pages are rarely opened or get no traffic what-so-ever
  • How much time do people spend on a page

And we’ve only mentioned a mere few of the pieces of actual data a results analysis will show here. But, in truth, web analyses reveal hundreds more factors and bits of information based on how deeply you want to search.

Yet, our goal in sharing this article is to help you learn how to genuinely listen to what customers are saying when they’re speaking to you about your site. Because only then can you start making the necessary and strategic adjustments to connect better with potential customers.

So, precisely what makes a site or web design ugly?

This notion is hard to calculate, especially since beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But what we do know is that if you don’t have the proper understanding of a website’s purpose, its laws of functionality, or its required responsiveness to UX and UI, it can hurt you.

Want to jump straight to the UGLY parts? Click ahead!

However, several characteristics and potential factors could help determine a site’s ugliness, and we’ll be sharing the most common ones in this article. After all, there is always a valid reason behind why a business website experiences things like low traffic, high bounce rates, and insufficient lead generation. And in most cases, we’ll find a characteristic and sign of ugliness.

So, let’s get into it! Here are a few sure-fire signs that a company website is U.G.L.Y!

“U” – Unattractive/Unappealing

Even you’ll have to admit there’s been a time when you came across an online atrocity at least once! Every so often, we do too! So you painfully fix your eyes on a web design that looks so UNATTRACTIVE that you simply cannot stop looking at it, and you’re left wondering with bewilderment.

Unfortunately, this is a common issue that we still see today, where sites have an awful layout and are just plain, old eyesores. For example, pure website ugliness can typically be confirmed by a high bounce rate from the homepage. You can also determine unattractiveness when reports show that visitors don’t click to open any other pages on a site.

According to recent statistics, nearly 40 percent of online visitors will leave a website with an unappealing design layout. This stat means that when people come to a site with poor navigation, design, and visual guidance, they’re ultimately left confused and unable to connect with the business. And in the end, no one wins.

Ugly homepage web design sample

Source: GlobalWebFX

“G” – Geriatric and Gaudy

Web designs that are more than three years OLD tend to lose their relevance at expedited rates with each passing year. Because digital marketing is somewhat of an evolutionary phenomenon, there’s a constant flow of innovation happening. Thus, businesses must also rise to the occasion by leaning on the side of advancing with online technology to stay relevant and marketable.

Over time, we’ve seen how OUTDATED websites can eventually cause poor user experiences for their visitors. And statistics still show that nearly 9 out of 10 visitors are less likely to click into a website again if they’ve had a bad UX/UI experience. More than likely, bad experiences come from sites that are either outdated or gaudy, which is the next point:

Having web pages that are GAUDY and riddled with flash animation can also make a site “ugly.” File-heavy sites are not only flashy, old eye sores, but they also significantly slow down page speed. So, if your website has these issues, you should first have an analysis done and speak with a professional firm about next steps.

“L” – LETHARGIC or Slow-Loading Web Design

Suppose a business website takes longer than three seconds to load after a visitor clicks in, then it’s too slow. Remember, people still have short attention spans. And although they’re more willing these days to dig for information, they don’t want to wait with every click!


Certain variables can make a site’s loading time slow or begin to slow. As we mentioned before, flash animation, for example, is one sure-fire thing that slows a website’s speed. Another issue is image size. There are size requirements for every digital marketing platform, so images and graphics must comply in order to look well on page layouts and keep loading times within an acceptable speed.

Google reported that roughly 53% of online visitors leave a page that takes more than three seconds to load from their smartphones. Snail-speed loading issues can be due to having super large images or files on the site. In addition, your site could have hidden security issues and breaches that can also wreak havoc on its loading speed.

“Y” – YAPPY or Content-Heavy/Wordy

Cute customer frustrated by wordy content web designAnother huge website turn-off is a site that has content overload on each page. When visitors hit wordy homepages full of multiple paragraphs, finding the pertinent information they need can be extremely difficult. Bottom line, people don’t want to feel like they’re reading a book each time they click onto a page of a website. There’s nothing more frustrating for potential customers than that!1

From a visual perspective, people need to immediately see their reason for clicking onto a page in the first place. Ugly websites typically don’t provide the content and messaging necessary to maintain connectivity with their audience. And even if a site offers guided messaging and proper calls-to-action to improve the probability of conversion, customers would rather abandon a wordy site than decipher through bulky paragraphs to find needed products and services.

Content remains KING and context is QUEEN in the world of digital marketing. Therefore, it’s imperative that what companies ‘say’ on their websites and ‘how’ they say it consistently connects with their audience. Simply put, websites need content that compels audiences to act/convert through guided messages. In addition, the content layout for each page should maintain pleasing visual aesthetics. For instance, using techniques like impactful images, bold fonts, headers, and relevant calls-to-action keep visitors captivated while on their buying journey. If we can remember that every web page shouldn’t be a blog article, then our websites could be prettier!

Does your website show signs of ugliness?

Whether these symptoms sound familiar or not, if you need to make a move on enhancing the look or functionality of your company website, let’s talk! Or freely click below to get started.

FREE Website Analysis!



  1. Puppy customer online frustration photo by Cookie the Pom.

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