15+ Gripes Users Have with Business Websites

website gripesWe asked internet users what some of their top annoyances with websites are. Here is what they had to say.

Bad Load Time

People nowadays are used to everything going fast, and they have no time to deal with slow loading websites. Once they find that the website they are about to view is slow to load, they just go for another website of the same niche and leave the slower ones.

  • Michelle Devani, Founder of LoveDevani

Annoying Pop-Ups

Too many pop-ups is my pet peeve. I understand that it isn’t uncommon for some websites to have pop-ups for gated content. That being said, if I’m constantly having to exit out of pop-up CTAs, I’m more likely to end up leaving the site and opting to get information elsewhere. Overloading users with pop-ups is distracting and disruptive. It’s a sure-fire way for businesses to decrease average time on site and wind up with a high bounce rate.

  • Kimberly Smith, Marketing Manager at Clarify Capital

Too Many Ads

As for me, the thing that I find annoying is when websites have a lot of advertisements that make the browsing experience bad or even worse. This not only makes the website slow to load, but this also makes the reader feel that the website is full of malware. Personally speaking, whenever I stumble upon this kind of website, I immediately close the website and avoid clicking it in the future.

  • Samantha Moss, Editor and Content Ambassador at Romantific


I don’t know how companies haven’t figured this out yet, but the vast majority of users and shoppers are coming and will continue to come from mobile devices – mostly phones. You can’t have a terrible user interface and user experience for their most used device. It’s like shooting yourself in the foot and a major pet peeve of mine.

  • Hosea Chang, COO of Hayden Los Angeles

Overuse of Stock Photos

There are websites and topics where stock photos are suited, and there are those that need actual photos. I hate it when a website about service uses stock photos. I mean, why not take actual photos of you and your employees doing the service?

  • Sonya Schwartz, Founder of Her Norm

Broken Links

When links are broken or don’t click through, I immediately walk from the page. Don’t waste my time with these issues. In 2020, it shouldn’t be happening.

  • Andrew Taylor, Director at Net Lawman

Unclear Messaging

When it comes to copy and headlines, so many businesses try to be clever when really they should focus on being clear. A major shoe company can get away with the main header on the site being “embrace the dream” because everyone already knows they make awesome basketball shoes. If people coming to your site don’t know your business already, then you need to be crystal clear in messaging.

  • Michael Alexis, CEO of TeamBuilding

Self-Loading Videos

If there is one extremely annoying thing for me, especially on mobile phones, it’s business websites that spawn promotional videos the moment you enter. For starters, it catches you off guard when the volume just starts randomly while you are browsing the website. Secondly, it takes up bandwidth since loading a video up will take your mobile data, even if you didn’t intend on doing so. Generally speaking, this type of marketing strategy is annoying and definitely influences how I perceive a business after visiting their website for the first time.

  • Tom Winter, Co-Founder at DevSkiller

Forgetting Current Customers

I’ve seen many business websites that prioritize potential customers over existing customers. If I go to a website that provides a cloud software I use, I might have to click past two screens trying to sell me a product I already pay for.

  • Michael Heiligenstein, Director of Content Strategy at Flex

Getting Ghosted

When I click on a Work with Us page and it’s full of generic stock photos and fluffy copy that’s hard to skim it’s a turnoff. Even worse? When there’s a contact button at the bottom, and nowhere on the page shows a description of services or price… THAT is terrible. But what tops all of it is if I do fill out a form and then never hear back from the company.

  • Liz Wilcox, Founder Liz Wilcox LLC

Push Notifications

Not only are they similar to pop-ups, but if you click “yes” then they show up on your device. As a web developer, I highly encourage my clients to not use these tools Even though they’re popular with many big blogs or websites, I find them so annoying.

  • Dave Hoch, Co-Founder of Big Cup of Coffee and Colibrily

Feeling Bombarded

The main gripe I have about business websites is the sheer quantity of chat boxes, cookie-compliance pop-ups, special offers, discounts alerts, and quizzes I am bombarded with before even seeing any of the on-page content. This is distracting, frustrating, and time-consuming. I’m not even sure the service is what I’m looking for before I have time to engage with the website. This is an immediate turnoff and is a sure-fire way to get me to press the “back” button in my browser and search for a different website.

  • Vinay Amin, Health Expert and CEO at Eu Natural

Boring Writing

I find it infuriating how many businesses clearly spend a lot of time and money
getting their websites up and running, and then make all the text on the page read like it’s straight out of a mind-numbing textbook! Spice your language up! Keep the reader engaged! Companies could learn a thing or two from the bloggers out there, who inject some personality into the content. Otherwise, those businesses come across like yet another soulless company.

  • Sean Potter, Travel Blogger at Discover The Cities

Hidden Content

Having an image carousel, sliders, or tabs of content might make a website look impressive, but it can be extremely frustrating for users. Being unable to quickly find answers because information is hidden or requires navigating through a confusing site layout isn’t fun. This frustration is only amplified when searching on a phone and sites have similar confusing features on their mobile designs.

  • Cristopher Carillo, Marketing Manager at Allied Payments

Too Much Focus on Founders

Years ago, I read website advice for small businesses that said ditch the about page. Nobody but you cares, and I’ve found that to be true. At best, that section is there to boost the owner’s ego. At worst, the entire website is designed for that purpose. Ideally any website should provide high-quality information, answer consumer’s questions and offer innovative solutions. It’s all about the customers and their needs – not which room you were in when you got the idea for your business.

  • Joni Holderman, Professional Resume Writer at Thrive! Resumes

Lack of Contact Info

It’s incredibly frustrating when companies have multiple locations, but they don’t list the different phone numbers for the location and it is a service industry. This causes friction for the consumer to connect with the actual people that they will conduct business with. We don’t want gatekeepers. We want expediency.

  • Luke Smith, Founder of We Buy Property in Kentucky

Poor Menu Design

Perhaps the most common one I come across in this respect is a failing of navigation bars and drop-down menus, or anything involving drop downs, like product option selections in eCommerce stores, or options to visit sub-pages or browse second-tier navigation menus. All too many of these scroll down off the page, and when you attempt to follow them via the mouse, disappear as soon as you leave the list itself, meaning you have to use the arrow keys to access the lower options, and even so this does not always work either.

  • Polly Kay, Senior Marketing Manager at English Blinds

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Sarah Blocksidge

About the Author

Sarah Blocksidge

Sarah is the Marketing Director at Sixth City Marketing and has been with the company since 2016. Her main role is to attract more B2B clients for the company. Over the years, she has been mentioned on HubSpot, Content Marketing Institute, Fast Company, Mashable, and many other notable sites.

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