0

User experience design (or UX design) works differently than graphic design or web design. Instead of focusing on how a website or app looks, it focuses more on the functionality, usability, and efficiency of the website. 

Having good UX design on your website helps visitors quickly find what they came looking for, providing them with an enjoyable browsing experience and encouraging them to return to your site again and again. 

Your website has to be easy to navigate and understand otherwise your customers won’t be able to find what they’re looking for. If they can’t find what they want (and right away) then they’ll more than likely click off and head over to your competitors instead. 

So, how can you improve your website’s user experience? Here are 8 ways you can improve your site’s user experience today.  

Incorporate high-quality, relevant images and visuals

Images and visuals are a basic necessity for any website. The click-through-rate (CTR) of a website is at least 42% higher if your site contains images or visuals.

Did you know content that uses relevant images gets 94% more views than content that doesn’t? That’s a lot of views to risk losing over not adding relevant imagery. 

Adding interesting, relevant images, infographics, and videos to your site will make it look a lot more interesting and appealing to your user. It will help improve your user experience and increase the time your visitors spend on your website.

Simplify your navigation

Having too many items on your navigation bar will overwhelm your visitors. You don’t want them to be confused and struggle to find what they’re looking for the minute they land on your home page. 

Try to make your website easy to move around and less muddled by cutting back on the number of items on your menu.  

You can do this by: 

  • Grouping related pages into a drop-down menu
  • Moving non-essential items to the footer navigation
  • Hyperlink to popular pages in other places on your site

If you’ve got a small-enough site, try not to have more than 5 or 6 items on your main navigation bar and keep any drop-down menu items to around 4 per category.

Create a call-to-action for every page

There should always be a flow to how your user explores your site – on websites, it’s called the user journey. Just like your nav menu brings your users from page to page, your content should guide them around your website as well. 

The best thing to do to improve the flow of your pages (and help convert casual visitors to inquiries) is to get rid of any ‘dead-ends’ aka pages that don’t have a CTA (call to action). 

Your page has to lead your visitor somewhere. By not putting CTAs at the end of your pages you’re missing out on the opportunity to guide your user to your contact page, product page, or online booking system. 

If your user has taken the time and the effort to read about your business then they’re definitely going to be interested in working with you. If you don’t provide them with a clear CTA then they might click away before converting. 

Do you have CTAs on each of your pages?

Don’t forget to make your CTAs obvious too! If it’s a clickable link make sure it stands out from the rest of the text. If it’s a button be sure to make the colour stick out on the page. Make your CTAs hard to ignore and encourage your users to click on them.

Keep it simple

Using standard website conventions is a great way to improve your user experience. 

Why?

Because people like things better when they’re done how they’re usually done. It makes it easier to recognize what they’re supposed to do. For example, when you see a stop sign you know you’re meant to stop your car. We can take advantage of this type of thinking with our websites to improve our user experience.

It can be argued that following conventions means you’re less creative and that’s understandable. But, user experience is a lot more important than creativity. Be creative with your website design but don’t let your user experience falter because you wanted to try something new.

Here are some conventions to stick to on your own website:

  • Logo in the top-left corner
  • Navigation bar at the top of the page
  • Contact page on the navigation bar
  • Search feature in your header
  • Sign-up form at the bottom of the page
  • Social media icons in your footer
  • Sitemap, Privacy Policy, Terms, etc. in the footer
  • Phone number/email above the navbar

Optimise your website’s performance

Having a well-optimised website simply means you’ll get more visitors who’ll stay for longer and you’re more likely to see them spend money with you. 

Here are a couple of things you should optimise on your website to improve your user experience. 

Optimise your website’s speed/load times

Your load time is a critical aspect when it comes to your user experience. You don’t want people waiting for your page to load. 

In fact, if people wait longer than 3-5 seconds for a page to load they usually just click away. They don’t even take the time to see what your business has to offer. 

Responsive and mobile-friendly design

It’s pretty amazing that we can surf the internet on our mobile phones but this also means you have to make sure your website looks good on smaller screens

Check to see if your website is mobile responsive and if it’s easy to use on smaller screens like tablets and phones. 

So many users are scrolling the web with their phones. It’d be a shame if your business lost out on leads just because your website isn’t mobile-responsive.

Place important information above the fold

Placing information above the fold (the part of the page that is viewable before you scroll) will call more attention to it.

This is why it’s wise to have all the important and necessary information above the fold.

This doesn’t mean that you should cram in a load of photos and text on the page just so it fits above the fold. Make sure it’s spaced out and easy to read. If your content grabs their attention they’ll scroll and read the rest. 

Is your important information above the fold? If not, try to rearrange your items or downsize your paragraphs to fit all the important stuff at the top.

Make search bars easily accessible

Help your visitors by making your search bar easy to find. Place it in a prominent area on your site so your users don’t have to spend a long time looking for it. 

Are your search bars easily accessible?

Think about placing them on pages that contain a lot of information like blogs, product pages, archives etc. 

Pay attention to feedback and keep testing

Your users can be your most valuable resource for noticing usability issues. By checking through emails you’ll be able to see what features people keep asking for or complaints that keep coming up.

Surveys are also a great way to get information on usability issues. A well-crafted survey can help you figure out more about your sites’ UX then you would have known by yourself. 

Remember, don’t get too attached to certain aspects of your website. If your users aren’t happy then you’ll have to change it. Their happiness is all that matters.

It’s also important to perform a usability test on your website every so often. This will let you see how usable your site is and what you can do to improve it. 


At Whelan Web Design, we love helping local Waterford businesses improve their online presence. If you’d like to talk about how to improve your website’s user experience then get in touch with our team today.

Comments: 0