20 Aug 10 Essential Tips for Making Your Website More User Friendly
So, you want to build a website?
That’s great! Creating a website is a big step toward establishing your business as a viable competitor in today’s vast digital landscape.
Of course, the entire reason you’re creating a site is so your customers have a digital space to find your brand. As a result, you’ll need to make sure your website is as user-friendly as it gets.
Not sure where to start? Keep reading for 10 steps to help you create a user-friendly website.
Think Like Your Customer
One surefire way to create a great website is by putting yourself into your customers’ shoes and prioritizing their needs.
Your website should be a place to show off your products, host your content, and more. At the end of the day, though, your site should focus on your customers’ needs.
Of course, you’re not a mind reader. How can you know what they want?
It’s simple: Think about your own browsing habits. Surf the web and pay attention to the usability aspects of your favorite websites.
What makes them so much fun to navigate around? How responsive is the design?
It’s easy to get so caught up in the complicated world of web design that you forget to even think about the customer’s needs in the first place.
Start With A Sitemap
Take a second to think back to when you were a kid playing with your Hot Wheels.
As you designed the track, chances are you had no idea what the end result was.
There’s a good chance that the track just kind of ended at some point as you ran out of track.
This is pretty much what’s guaranteed to happen if you don’t first build a sitemap before you start creating your website.
If this is your first time in the world of web design, a sitemap is more or less the equivalent of a website’s blueprint. It includes the general skeleton of your site’s design as well as menus, sub-menus, and more or less anything your visitors will interact with.
A wonderful user experience begins with thought and consideration on the part of the web designer. Make sure that you have a plan, otherwise your site could turn out to be a jumbled mess.
Keep It Fast And Furious
You only have a few seconds to make a good first impression on your visitors, so you better make it count. On average, customers will wait around three seconds before deciding that a site isn’t worth their time.
Don’t make a fatal mistake and ignore your site’s speed. Because once a customer loses interest in your site, there’s little chance they’ll come back.
Optimize images, improve URL structures, and get rid of any unnecessary plugins.
Strategically Place Your Info
A lot of newcomers seem unsure about where they should include basic details like their contact information, hours of operation, and business logo.
Research shows that most users start at the top left corner of a web page and work their way across.
Generally speaking, it’s a good idea to make sure that this info remains consistent across all of your pages and includes an embedded link to your homepage (often within the logo).
Don’t Forget About The Mobile Experience
These days, a customer is more likely to visit your website on a mobile device than their desktop. As a result, it’s up to you to make sure they can access your site the way they want.
Give your customers a mobile-ready experience that’ll blow them away. Your mobile site should include 1:1 parity with your desktop site, or at least near parity.
Don’t forget to think about how the experience will translate to a touchscreen, too. If your site’s touch zones are in inopportune places, you’ll end up frustrating your visitors.
Keep It Simple
There’s nothing wrong with a complex, elaborate website. But if it’s not usable, what’s the point?
When in doubt, keep things simple.
Most customers don’t browse websites for their bells and whistles, to begin with — they’re browsing for simple information. As long as your design isn’t too distracting, your menus are well-labeled, and your content is scannable, you can’t go wrong.
Implement A Modern Design
If you’ve never had the unique pleasure of checking out the website for the hit 1996 feature film Space Jam, you should do so at your earliest convenience.
The website is more or less a relic to bad web design and should serve as a great example of what not to do.
Whereas the Space Jam website’s design is distracting to the point of practically assaulting your senses, your design should be far simpler.
In fact, users should barely even notice it.
Let Users Answer Their Own Questions
One of the most egregious errors you can make is forgetting to implement a search bar. Even if your website has a great design and wonderful content, users should be able to find said content at a moment’s notice.
Search bars are vastly underrated, in our opinion, and having the ability to quickly scan an entire site to find the morsel of info you’re after is a huge time saver for your users.
Remember, at the end of the day you’re trying to create a user-friendly experience. Including a search bar is a great, subtle way to show that you value your users’ time.
Include A Call-To-Action
Fantastic content and a user-friendly design account for nothing if users have no clue where to go from your homepage.
Don’t forget to include a call-to-action (CTA) on every relevant part of your website. Encouraging users to get in touch with you, check out your services, or even just follow your social channels, is a simple but effective way to generate leads.
These Are The Benchmarks Of A Truly User-Friendly Website
There you have it, 10 of the most crucial, easiest to implement aspects of a user-friendly website. Each of these steps are important in their own right, but when used together, they make for a great experience your customers will love.
Are you interested in launching a great new website for your brand? Don’t spend hours coding and sweating the small details of web design.
Get in touch and let us help! We’ll work with you to come up with a web strategy that generates real results — all it takes is a half hour!