A website has become an elementary feature for a business to improve its reachability. It is akin to having a business card. If an upcoming business leaves out the digital element from their model, they would lose a huge chunk of potential leads and prospects.
While there is a common misconception that marketing activities are only affordable by big conglomerates, with competition in the sphere, it has become fairly inexpensive and within reach of small and medium businesses. Use these tips to improve your website’s UX and subsequently improve ROI.
#1. Optimizing Websites for Faster Loading
Page loading time should be the most important KPI to review your website’s operation. In addition to imparting a poor browsing experience, it also limits the crawling ability of Google bots on your website. While Google has never divulged any information about the ranking factors, with this reply from Google employee, John Mueller, it seems that 2 seconds is the threshold for site response time. The issue dealt with a temporarily unreachable URL, which was due to the inability of bots to index the webpage.
Follow these suggestions to make your pages load faster:
- Use online or offline tools to optimize and compress images, especially on the prominent section of your websites, like the homepage, above the fold and hero section. Know the difference between various image formats like JPG, PNG, GIF etc and their application.
- Compress the text and other elements of your website with methods like G-zip compression. It is just like compressing data files with winzip or winrar.
- Load critical information quickly and use lazy load effect for below the fold information and other sections like carousel images, videos and footers.
- Check your site’s loading speed with Google PageSpeed Insights. Use Google Analytic’s Site Speed feature to measure real-world loading times as compared to the lab results.
A website which is filled with text, low quality, complicated or large number of images, disastrously affects the UX of your visitor. In most cases, the consumer will abandon your website and move over to your competitors’ page. Make your website as simple as possible with the following tips:
- Use images in correct format (vector/raster) and fill your website with simple but superior images. But show only the most important things on home page, without unnecessary elements like blog preview, details of services etc. Have a separate section for all amenities of your business. Instead of getting stock photos online, employ a dedicated photo shoot for beautiful and ambient photos.
- Use predictive and intuitive menu features like drop down bar. Differentiate between your visitors using desktop and mobile. Use tools like Outsprung to check interface and navigation issues, and Crazyegg to see how viewers click and scroll through a website.
- If your business deals with Ecommerce, make checkout as simple as possible. Use guest checkout options. Exploit cookie data to fill forms and other user details, even for the unregistered customers. Use breadcrumb navigation to help users go back in real time and make any changes to the previous steps. Use similar visual tricks to make users feel good, psychologically.
- Simplify sign up and sign ins. Provide maximum usability of your website without the need of creating an account.
- Create clean layout with fewer borders. It creates a beautiful and focused outline for a website. Borders compete for attention without any real content distracting readers from the real objective.
#3. Leveraging personalization and delivering dynamically customized content
Personalization is a great way to directly connect with the prospects. A web page, that is customized and feels tailored to an individual, generates more conversion as compared to an amazing but stable content. Personalization is borne out of a carefully curated database. The data needs to be used judicially to give way to efficient customization. Use these tips to personalize your website for better UX:
- Gather data about User behavior from analytics software, eCommerce platforms and your ESPs. Tailor your website on the basis of past success rates of your content. Do A/B testing to check the different versions.
- Optimize your webpage with a responsive design, or a separate mobile version of existing website to cater to the touch interface. Reduce your site’s bounce rates by using tappable buttons instead of linked text. Make sure your images and videos are viewable on a mobile screen. Use HTML5 to programme for touch screens.
- Deliver persona based experience on your website. It asks users to select the type of audience they are, like HR leader, sales person, CEOs etc. embed different codes to your website for each persona. You can even redirect users on the basis of persona they choose.
#4. Optimizing Hyperlinks and Repeating Call to actions
Linking is one of the most important aspects of a website. It directs visitors where you want them to go. Make sure your users reach the desired landing pages by adopting these tips:
- Make your links easily identifiable by visual signs. While the classic Blue link color, has started to look repulsive, use bolds, underlines and colors which are consistent with your website to draw consumers’ attention.
- Remove 404 errors and dead links. Find such
SEOdisasters with Google Search console and fix them with 301 redirects. Use tier one links as much as possible. Get link juice and authority from links by repairing redirect chains and changing 302s to 301s. It is one of the most important onsite SEO factors for 2016.
- Call to actions can be regarded as a more aggressive link. And like a link, make it stand out by using Psychology of color. Use simple and straightforward actionable text like “sign up now”, “join us” etc. GoodUI.org tested some Good ideas and came up with an important discovery of repeating CTAs. A repeated CTA button at the bottom generated 84% more conversions.
#5. Educating your Customers for Easier Site Experience via Blogging
Content marketing is slowly becoming the preferred choice for creating trust and reliability in the domain, along with a constantly incoming traffic and imparting relevant information to the consumers. A well-written blog improves UX manifolds by educating the prospect about your business and how it can benefit them. Use these steps to effectively educate your consumers with blogs:
- Plan extensively and gain insights about the latest buzz from Google Trends, Buzzsumo and social media tools like Twiter, Reddit and Pinterest. Create relevant blogs that relate to your business and is consistent with the internet’s happenings.
- Give tips and hacks to make best use of your website, services and products in consistent blog posts. Encourage your employees to blog and post other interesting content about a recent trip or other fun activities to keep your users interested and engaged with your website.
- The main use of marketing via blogs and content is that it makes your website come up in Google’s organic search for a variety of keywords. Before creating blogs know your audience and the intent of their search. For instance, if a user searches for “tips to tweak your business”, focus on helping the reader with actual tips and tricks instead of divulging into details about business models and how to start a business.
- As a last tip, always measure your performance with Google Analytics or other software. It tells you about the level of engagement and the success of your website, its interface, and content.
While designing a website, the ultimate goal is conversion. You want the customers to sail smoothly through your web page, imparting correct information, in a way that brings some tangible business to you. Improve UX and see the difference it brings to your ROI.
Image: A man is holding a tablet with “UX DESIGN” texts on the screen