While you don’t have the time or financial resources to support a redesign of your site, there are simple and affordable ways to improve your site’s UX.
By now, you’ve probably been told more times than you care to remember about the importance of a positive user experience on your site. It really is an element of effective digital marketing , affecting consumers’ perceptions of your brand, traffic, conversions and search engine rankings.
If you’ve ever taken the time to research clients about your website or consult a marketing agency for a UX analysis, you’re ahead of the game! Looking at your target audience (who you built your website for in the first place) or consulting expert advice are among the most effective ways to evaluate your website.
Maybe you’ve determined that customers can’t find your content, are dissatisfied with how slow your pages load, or don’t trust you based on your digital branding – so what do you do about it? While you may not have the time or financial resources to support a complete website overhaul , that doesn’t mean you have to throw in the towel. There are several simple and affordable ways to improve your website’s UX.
A critical part of UX is designing an easy-to-use website and conveying a consistent brand image across pages. Using a similar layout on each page helps guide the reader through your content and bring more attention to your call to action. Placing CTA buttons or contact forms in the same place on each page will likely get them more clicks and completions because users don’t have to dig deep into your content to find them.
Easy To Use Navigation
By matching a consistent layout, you can further simplify a visit to your site through clear and uncluttered navigation. Your navigation bar or menu serves as the GPS for your website. If you know where you want to go, these tools will get you there. However, if you are being introduced to a company for the first time, you may not necessarily know what you are looking for right off the bat. This is where a clear path is essential, and you can provide this to your visitors far beyond a simple menu bar at the top of the page.
Guide users through your site with text and images that indicate the optimal order to look at the content (also called a visual hierarchy), or suggest content that the user might like based on previously clicked pages. Your product or service pages should always provide information that tells visitors what to do next. Whether it’s a “buy” button, contact form, or related blog posts, don’t just educate users about one of your offerings and let them go on their own. This is no way to build rapport or encourage them to buy from you.
CTAs On Every Page
If you want to maximize conversions on your website, you have to call visitors to action, right? If you have CTA buttons, contact forms, a phone number, or WhatsApp integration capability, you should have at least one of these calls to action on every page of your website. There should always be a way to contact you without having to click on the ‘Contact’ page and leave the current page you are on.
During the research or purchase process, it’s easy to get caught up in the plethora of information we’re trying to consume and forget about the fact that we really need to take action to meet that particular need. A friendly reminder through a CTA will help get your customers back on track and more likely to do business with you.
Fast page loading speed
We’re pretty spoiled these days when it comes to the technology available to us. We literally have the world at our fingertips. That said, we don’t have nearly the patience we used to have when it comes to website loading speeds. These are not days like the early 2000s. Due to our exhausted patience, the optimal load time is 3 seconds or less before you risk losing visitors to your site.
Google also knows how important (and impatient) consumers are, and it takes page load speed into account when it comes to SEO rankings (see On Page SEO Tips ).
Fortunately, there are several ways to resolve this issue. The first, and probably most effective, way to speed up your site is by indexing your content database. A cluttered database of product offerings, blog posts, and other content makes your site have to work a lot harder to extract the information the searcher is looking for. Organizing this into relevant categories helps speed up this process, and this will reflect on your overall loading speed.
Another element that is holding you back is the abundance of tracking codes on your website. Trust us, we love to look at user visit analytics, but you have to cut back. Having multiple tracking codes working at the same time just slows down the system. Finally, Google Search Console ‘s PageSpeed Insights tool can take a specific look at what’s causing your site to load slowly and how it’s affecting your rankings.
High Quality Images
Whether or not your website serves an e-commerce purpose, using high-quality images is just as important. If consumers can buy directly from your website, how likely are you to buy something that is displayed by a pixelated image or an image that cannot be enlarged?
It will definitely scare away some buyers, so make sure you’re not just using images that reflect the pattern of products you sell, but that show the item from a variety of angles. This will give consumers comfort in knowing what they will get if they make a purchase. Even if you don’t actually sell your products or services online, you have to entice them to come to your store and make a purchase, and attractive imagery is an effective way to do that.
Also, be careful when using stock photos on your website. They definitely have their time and place: blog posts, website content, and even your homepage. But don’t go overboard with stock photos, and choose the ones you use wisely so you don’t make your site look cheesy or illegitimate.
This is an element that is often missing from many types of websites and is only leading to lost sales opportunities. It is understandable that you would want shoppers to create an account on your website so that you can manage their purchases and help them purchase easily if they return, or contact you via a form. However, sometimes consumers just need to make a quick purchase and don’t want to take the time to fill out a full profile. Offering an option to go out as a guest shows that you are time sensitive and responsive to their shopping needs. While it may not seem preferable to just offer a checkout process, remember, the user experience is about the consumer.
You can follow all the tips above, but it won’t mean much if your website doesn’t feature educational and relevant content. Quality content can help build trust, improve search engine rankings, and make your website look more appealing to visitors.
From your homepage to product and service pages to your blog , every page on your site is an opportunity to teach visitors something they didn’t know before they came to your site. Giving them the tools to learn about something and make an educated purchase decision reflects positively on your brand, and it also increases the likelihood that a consumer will want to buy from you.
There’s a lot that goes into creating a positive user experience for consumers, but the root of a successful web presence comes down to understanding your target audience. You cannot design an effective website or use any of the above tips if you don’t know who you are trying to reach with your website. Once you understand your customers, try to put yourself in their shoes. If you were a complete stranger who came to your site, what would make the experience useful to you? This strategy, along with these insights and your analytics tools, will help you boost your website’s UX, building search and sales rankings in the process.