I’m sure we have all encountered extremely slow websites that make us want to pull our hair out, right? It always seems to be the websites that we need to load the fastest that seem to take minutes to fully load. This could be the problem that your potential customers are facing right now when they land on your website.
Believe it or not, potential customers will leave your website and find another one that loads faster which means you just lost a potential lead. In a world ruled by eCommerce and online information, this is the last thing you want to happen.
Improving user experience will improve search engine optimization, lower bounce rates (how many people immediately leave your website upon arrival), and create a more user friendly web design. Here are some user experience tips to keep in mind when planning your website project.
1. Leave out the fancy bells and whistles.
The biggest of all user experience tips: Performance rules over all. Fancy bells and whistles don’t mean anything if it takes 30 seconds for your page to load. You could have all the videos, widgets, and scripts in the world but nobody will care if the information they came for is hard to access.
The goal of any website is to deliver a resource to the user and make that resource easy to use. If you’re running an insurance agency, potential customers will visit your website for information about your prices and what sets your company apart. They didn’t come to your website for the frills, they came for information.
You want to leave these things out and focus on delivering information that is beneficial and easy to find. Videos, scripts, and widgets often times slow the loading speed of your website and this is problematic when you’re trying to build a reputable resource for potential clients.
The check the speed of your website to find out if you need to improve, you can use GTMetrix, a free tool that gives you the load time of your website and tips to improve it.
2. Create content that is easy to read and easy to find.
We will stick to the insurance agency website scenario. Chances are, your website visitors came to see how your company stacks up against other companies in terms of price and customer service. Be sure to create content that is beneficial and leave out information that doesn’t immediately help your customer.
Make this information easy to find by using clear headlines that guide your users in the right direction. Include accompanying images or videos that drive home the message. Try to avoid tacky stock photography and find photos that enrich your content. You can also utilize bullet points when making lists instead of making long sentences with tons of commas.
When creating product or service descriptions, use plenty of white space to highlight the product or service you are trying to sell.
Leave out the information that can be talked about in a phone conversation or formal meeting. The goal is to answer a customer’s question but still leave room for curiosity about how your insurance company will benefit them.
The biggest goal in user experience design is to make it as easy as possible for a website user to find the information they are looking for.
3. Keep your navigation simple and your page count low.
When it comes to how many pages are on your website, less is more. Try to answer important questions on your home page or one page this is easy to find. Make sure your call to action buttons and navigation are prominent to increase user interaction.
If your website is flooded with pages, it will make it difficult to find anything. Don’t you just wish you could go to the library and find EXACTLY what you’re looking for without searching tirelessly for it? This is the same thing. When a potential customer visits your website, they should only have a few options.
Each option should benefit the user and contribute to their user experience. Humans tend to get overwhelmed when they are presented with a lot of options. They make quicker, smarter decisions when presented with fewer options.
A great example of this is our project we completed for M&G Electrical Contracting. This is a three page website. All of the important information is on the home page, such as the services offered, company values and information, team members, and contact information. The other two pages are about past work and career opportunities.
This practice is beneficial because anyone interested in M&G Electrical Contracting can go to their website and learn all of the basics about the company. From that point, the potential client can call, email, or send in a contact form submission to get more information. This leads to a conversation that could convert in to a sale or project.
4. Make sure your designer optimizes your website for performance.
Many times, designers will throw a ton of scripts and videos on a page because it looks pretty and wows their client. This ends up working against the client because it hinders website performance.
When planning your website project, be sure to check and make sure your designer makes the right decisions when it comes to performance. Check to make sure they follow these very basic user experience tips. The designer should take necessary steps to speed up your website using performance best practices.
If you are concerned about performance, consider requesting performance reporting. Noctem Media offers this as part of our all-inclusive website management package. These performance reports are beneficial because they keep you in the loop about how your website is performing and how your customers are experiencing your website.
In today’s fast paced, internet driven world, a high performing website is critical. Hopefully these user experience tips will help you work more effectively with your website designer.
If you have been thinking about creating a website for your company or overhauling your current site, Noctem Media is here to help. We offer free web consultations and would be happy to talk with you about your website needs.