Making Your Website Easy to Love
Designing A Site For Your Audience
How do you make your website lovable? The answer may surprise you. 76% of consumers say the most important factor is a site that makes it easy for them to find what they want. That’s right – a good user experience is not just about the gorgeous graphics or the drop dead design – it’s about helping users quickly find what they came for.
Here a few tips and tricks to make your website content easy to find, and your site easy to love.
1. Keep Your Navigation Simple
There is nothing more frustrating than visiting a site and not being able find your way around. Be sure to create logical groups for your main navigation with no more than 5 or 6 options. Try not to repeat items in multiple menus as this tends to confuse visitors. And don’t forget to gather feedback! It can be really helpful to watch visitors navigate through your website without assistance and then interview them – you’ll be surprised by what you learn!
2. Keep Your Design Simple
Not only do you need to make sure that your navigation is simple, you need to make sure your design is simple as well. Ever heard the saying, “Less is more?” Well it’s true! By removing all of the unnecessary distractions, your visitor can easily focus on what’s important and find what they are looking for. Too many competing bells and whistles will leave your audience clamoring for clarity.
3. Design Your Site for Each of Your Audiences
Remember who your site is for – and that each visitor may have a different agenda. You might have a visitor looking for a solution to a specific problem they have, such as wanting to increase registration for the webinars they are producing. Maybe a prospect that met you at an event now wants to know more about your company or perhaps a customer comes to your page looking for product support. The key is to create concrete and specific pathways to accommodate these different types of requirements — directly from your home page. This will help your visitors accomplish their goals more quickly with the fewest possible clicks.
4. Make it Easy to Take the Next Step
If someone wants to take the next step, such as placing an order, contacting someone within the company or registering for more information, make sure there is a link, button or call to action that is easily accessible. Also remember to keep your forms, such as your contact information forms or registration forms, easy and simple to fill out. Long forms that ask for a lot of information could turn potential customers or clients away.
5. Concise is the New Compelling
Remember that websites are scanned, not read. Brevity is your friend!! Too much content and too many words will cause quick confusion and reader-overload. Be clear AND be concise. The best websites are designed to provide quick and powerful takeaway’s – so avoid complicated deep-dive’s into history, company, or product. Infographics and visuals are winners every time!
6. Utilize familiar design patterns
When designing a site, it’s easy to get carried away. After all, everyone likes the idea of being creative and doing something different. But here’s the thing – if the user does not know how to interact with the element, you’ve done more harm than good. Using familiar design patterns will help users find information quickly, without too much thought.
7. Remember it’s Mobile!
Don’t forget that your web will be viewed on a mobile device. Design it with that in mind – navigation that is cut-off or pages that don’t scroll right are going to leave your smart phone lovers in the dust.
Mobile accounts for approximately half of web traffic worldwide
8. Analyze results
Gather data about where your users are going, staying, or stumbling, so you can be sure you are creating direct pathways to user content. There are a variety of tools and plugins designed to help you do just that – providing snapshots of user interaction via heatmaps and scroll maps and helping you gather data on what folks are clicking on (both static items and clickable items). This data is your friend – and can really help you improve the user experience.
Websites can be your most powerful tool to communicate who you are – but just remember to keep your audience front and center. With careful attention to the user experience, you can make a site that will make them love you, and keep them coming back for more.