7 Ways to Ruin a Political Campaign Website

campaign website

Lack of Content: The time a campaign launches is NOT the time to start putting together the website content. The website should be fully built out before it is publicized. You only have one chance to make a first impression with voters. If your website is in bad shape when they find you, then you’ve made a bad first impression. Also, there should be enough content for people to satisfy voters interested in an issue. One good technique is to summarize your issue and position on a web page, and then provide a downloadable PDF for those interested in more detail.

Bad Grammar and Spelling: If someone cannot spell properly in their campaign literature, why should I expect more from them in office? It’s like a resume with errors – they tend to be the first job candidates who get weeded out first.

Too Much Solicitation: Political campaign websites with donation buttons plastered all over them look either desperate or greedy. Having a button and/or page for contributions on the navigation is fine, but when an entire website (and email campaign) has the singular purpose of hitting up the reader for money, it’s too much. Sell your campaign first, and the dollars will follow.

No Voting Day Listed: This is a common problem. Everything about the campaign is on the website except for the day of the election. That date should be prominent throughout the site. A good place is at the bottom of each page and prominently on the home page. The Election Day notification should include everything, including the day of the week and the year. Unless your election is held in November, you are going to have to really work to get supporters out to the polls. Don’t keep that date a secret!

Leaving out the Location: Don’t assume everyone knows where you are located. Include your state in your website copy. This will help your site to be ranked when voters search a candidate’s name in the search engines.

Bad Design: This is a subjective element, but a poorly designed website does not do much to help a candidate. For local campaigns, simple and clean is best. Along with bad design, you could also lump in poor design practices such as overly-large image files, broken links and sites that do not look right in different browsers.

Site Doesn’t Match Campaign Literature: Consistency of message and consistency of presentation are important in a campaign. When campaign elements do not match, it can be confusing to the voters. It’s all about branding a candidate, branding a campaign, and branding a positive message.

Keep your messaging clear and simple, and you will well be on your way to Election Day success!

Online Candidate provides political website design for candidates running for local office. Once you have your campaign website up and running, add it to our free political candidate directory!

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