Website Tips

We understand that websites can seem complicated if you're not working with them on a regular basis. That's why we're building a database of useful information on recommended best practice for web design and development. This collection of material will target common misconceptions and mistakes. We hope you find it useful.

Seems like a good idea, right? You want potential customers to contact you, so you provide contact details on your website. A primary phone number, maybe a direct dial or mobile number for specific team members...adding an email address just makes sense.

Or does it?

Maybe you've got one of those clever, linked email addresses that uses "mailto:" so that when a visitor clicks the link, their email client automatically opens with your email address pre-populated in the "To" field. Very nice. 😉

So what's the problem?

Several things, actually.

Unless your website lacks a contact web form, you shouldn't list your email address on your website for the following reasons:

Email Address "Harvesting"

Email addresses listed on websites are easily "harvested" by bots whose sole purpose is to locate and collect addresses to add to spam databases. There are ways to avoid your email address from being harvested but it probably isn't worth implementing such techniques. Read on...

Useful Website Performance Data is Lost

When a visitor uses email to contact you instead of the contact form that you have set up on your website, you're missing out on important information, the least of which is a simple indication of whether your website is generating enquiries. When a visitor uses your contact form, you know that user found you through your website. An email out of the blue doesn't afford you this information.

Users are Taken Away from Your Website

Ok, so a visitor gets your email address from your website and emails you - that's good, right? Except that in order to do so, they have to open their email client, which means they're no longer looking at your website. Uh uh. Not what your want. The longer you can keep users on your website, the better.

Besides the obvious benefit (keeping visitors on your website to educate them and secure their custom), the time a user spends on your website plays an important role in influencing how your site ranks in search engine results.

Conclusion

Our advice is this: let your contact form function as the primary means of collecting visitor enquiries through your website. If someone really want to get hold of you in person, they can (and will) call using the phone number you have provided.