Why the Majority of Your Website Visitors Stay for Less than 5 Seconds?

Developing a new business website usually takes a few weeks of programming and design. The purpose of your website is to attract potential customers, popularize your brand and, of course, sell products or services. The fact is that you only have a few seconds to grab the attention of your visitors before they go away.

When people open a website, they stay only for 5 seconds on average. In the first 2-3 seconds, they already know whether your website is interesting enough for them to stay. If you want them to stay more, your task is to make a good first impression and convey a powerful message that makes them check out more of your content.

Here is a chart that shows the time that visitors spend on a website. It is clear that this site needs some serious improvements, because the 86% of its visitors stays less than 5 seconds.


If you don’t want to fall into that 5-second category, we can show you the essentials of an engaging and successful business website. You will learn more about how to make your landing page more appealing, the reasons why people decide to leave so quickly and how to arouse their interest.

1. The faster your web pages load, the better

Since most people have access to high-speed Internet, most of them instantly leave a website that takes more than 4 seconds to load. It only makes the impression that the website is slow and frustrating to browse. According to today’s standards, your web pages should load in less than 2 seconds.

People that find a slow website usually never return. They can find dozens of other online shops with similar services or products with faster page load times. Also, you definitely don’t want to start investing into ads while having a slow website. Maybe you will have a great click-through rate, but visitors will leave your website before buying.

Google ranks websites with an algorithm that keeps track of page load times, number of pages visited on a website and visitors that revisit the site. It takes various factors into account to measure the user experience your website provides. If you want Google to prefer your website, you need to ensure that less than 2 seconds page load time.

2. Making a powerful first impression is key

Think about the landing page you want to welcome your visitors with. The first impression always makes people form a powerful opinion which either makes them leave or stay for more after the first glance. Poorly designed websites with successful businesses behind them are very rare. Those either got lucky or the website has very little to do with the marketing plan of that business

Your business website needs a unique, eye-catching style with images and colors that are in balance with each other. The point is that once people see it, they should be able to easily memorize it or even get excited to see more of your website. One of the main reasons people leave websites within 5 seconds is because they are cluttered and confusing, so simplicity is essential.

3. Focus on the area above the page fold

Researches show that the first thing visitors check out and memorize on a website is the area above the page fold. If you put a catchy phrase or a powerful image there, you can easily get their attention. They will surely stay to check out the majority of that web page and possibly even more.

The information you add to your above the fold area needs to be short and easy to digest. It also has to tell something about the products and services you provide and the main benefits your customers gain from buying them.

People who are browsing the Internet searching for something usually have a short attention span, only seeking for the most useful information available. They definitely don’t want to read and scroll a lot until they get what they want. Instead, they stick to the first bit of information and that’s where you have the chance to say something important that wraps it up and makes them stay.

4. Stick to catchy headlines

You might publish a great and extensive article but that can’t really guarantee you a growing number of satisfied visitors. It’s a good idea to focus on adding informative headlines so they can immediately see what you have to offer. Since it requires a bigger effort to read through all your content, they might want to avoid it and stick to reading the headlines.

Once your visitors skim through the headlines, they can decide whether they are on the right page or not. In the process, you have plenty of chances to get them interested. As researches show, only 16% of the people read the content of a web page in detail while others just scroll through them. Every single headline needs to be brief and comprehensive.

5. Simple and intuitive website navigation

A website should welcome its visitors with a navigation bar that is easy to find and understand. Potential customers might already know what they want, they just need to navigate themselves to the desired page. Navigation menus that are initially hidden and either pop out from the sides or need you to click a button first are therefore not recommended.

In a navigation bar, you should include the most important links so that customers can seamlessly switch to your contact page, product categories, blog or home page. It has to be written in an easy-to-understand style because if people find it difficult to understand where each option leads to, they can end up completely rejecting your website.

6. Try to use more videos and images

A website with lots of text or even undivided paragraphs can easily scare a visitor away. It’s harder to find what you want when you need to read several paragraphs for it. If you don’t want your visitors to leave, highlight the information by using video explainers, video reviews or images besides of the textual content.

They will surely check out the video before reading and it’s usually more enjoyable, especially if they are in a hurry. Keep in mind that there are plenty of other websites offering the same products. It always pays off to focus on providing the core information in an easy to digest package in such competition.

You simply can’t go wrong with uploading explainer videos as it’s a form of content that never gets old when you want to sell something. It doesn’t take up much space and it also makes your web page look more professional.

7. Assure that your website is safe

If you have already made a great first impression and you don’t want to ruin it, make sure that your website is safe and communicate it clearly to your visitors. Nowadays, people are aware that they can easily run into a website that contains a virus, provides unsecure payment options or the company behind it is a complete fraud. To make them trust your intentions, don’t forget to add security badges and a well-written privacy policy.

Referring to reviews about your website and publishing positive feedback also helps a lot. People are always cautious with fresh websites, so make sure to include these key information right away. After all, they need to share private information every time they order something online. An SSL certificate is also easy to install and makes your website much more trustworthy.

8. Avoid cheap stock images and provide quality content

It is more natural for potential customers to check out the image of a product – and maybe the heading for some details – than to read the complete description. In fact, only two of ten people will read your content, the remaining eight will take a look at the image and the name of the product.

Use imagery that presents your products or services in an appealing manner and avoid stock images. Visitors will be more convinced if they find the most relevant, high-quality photos that are created by your company. It requires more time and effort to create unique, quality content and your visitors will appreciate it.

Websites that use cheap premade content can be easily considered as spammy. Since low-quality content is not really convincing, most people will abandon them within the first 5 seconds.

9. Make browsing enjoyable for mobile users

Nowadays, more and more people use the search engine via their mobile phones. Since 2015, the number of mobile device users have grown by a whopping 500% and it’s still in a stage of rapid growth. Maybe your customers will buy your products through their desktop PC or laptop, but first they will surely check out your shop on their phones.

Therefore, it became essential to build websites that are not only responsive but fully optimized for mobile devices to the latest detail. Browsing a website needs to be a seamless and enjoyable on both desktop machines and smartphones.

It usually takes a lot of testing and small improvements in style and structure until you get the final version of your mobile website that is ready for the customers. The mobile and desktop versions of a website greatly differ and smartphone users also want to experience the same high page loading speeds in a well-designed user interface as desktop users.

10. Give your visitors a path to follow

It’s simple: Always give your visitors something to do and they will stay on your website for much more than 5 seconds. Once they arrive on your page, you should have a clear line of action prepared for them that they can hardly resist to go through.

If a strong Call to Action is in front of their eyes as the best option at the moment, they are going to go with the flow. To create a good CTA, you should add a phrase that is catchy and easy to digest. It should offer and ask something (Click me!) and it should look like a button so that people want to click it.

Figure out a path for your visitors to follow and it will greatly benefit your business. Shopping is easier for your potential customers if they don’t need to think too much while checking out your website. The most important thing is to make sure that people don’t need to spend much time to figure out what to do next on your site.

11. Keep your promotions clear and honest

You might want to generate traffic from plenty of different sources, but keep in mind that you need to be consistent when drawing attention or promoting your business. People hate it when they click on a catchy banner or Ad and what they get is something less than the expected outcome.

The best idea is to promote exactly what your offer. There shouldn’t be a difference because it can easily lead to rejection once people land on your website. The more people leave your website within seconds, the more Google considers it as a page that deserves a lower rank in the search engine.

Furthermore, the keywords you promote and display in the search results should be consistent with the keywords you use on your website. You should include the headline of your website and, of course, some essential information of your company so that people can easily find and get what they want.

12. No more distractions, no more cluttered websites

It always leads to rejection when someone finds a website that starts to play a soundtrack right when the page loads. That background music is actually a huge turn off. It is based on a trend that should be long forgotten and was ineffective even back then. If you have background music on your website, then we can tell you that it’s the major cause of people staying there for less than 5 seconds.

There are many types of pop-ups that people consider distracting. However, if you use them smartly, you can greatly increase your conversion rate. It depends on the timing, the design of the pop-up, the value of your offer and the text you convey with it. What you should definitely avoid is welcoming your visitors with an instant pop-up, especially if it’s hard to make it go away.

On the other hand, cluttered websites can easily scare visitors away. Your content can be very useful but if you present it in a wrong way, it can become confusing. Putting a huge amount of colorful graphics and animation just to show how creative you are might not be a good idea because it ruins the seamless browsing experience for people.

In Conclusion

These are the 12 most essential practices that will lead you to huge amounts of traffic. Although it’s not easy to score high in every single field, solving either of these problems can lead you to some more conversion. These tips usually bring great results and they are more and more important as the time goes by and the competition gets bigger.

What is the most important thing in all of these practices is to improve the user experience of people that visit your site. If they like the design, the interface, your brand and the overall message of your business, they will definitely come back for more.

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