Have you ever considered how people use your website? Is the way you speak on your website the same as how you describe your business to people you sell to in person?
There are many factors to consider when building a new website. I’m going to run through what they are and how to assess if you’re doing it right.
1. What do you offer?
This seems very straight forward, yet a large number of the websites I see on a day-to-day basis do not clearly state their offering. A user should be able to know exactly what you do within five seconds of arriving to your website. If they have to search to find out what you do then you are doing it wrong. Too often websites are bombarded with messages that the business owner wants to get across, forgetting to tell new users what they do or sell.
2. Where do you want the user to go?
Imagine yourself in a maze. When running (or walking) through the maze, you make many decisions in order to find your way out. Every time you come to an intersection you have to choose which way to turn in order to get to where you want to go. This is all too common in the website world. Upon first arriving at a website, users must be guided on the journey you wish them to take. You can discern the organic journey of your website by asking friends to visit your website and instinctively interact with it. If they don’t end up reaching the destination you want users to end up at fairly quickly, then you need to make some adjustments.
3. Are you making the most of organic functionality?
Creating a mobile version or tablet version of your website is about more than just making the website work on those devices. It is about creating a unique experience that caters for how users interact with and gather information on each device. For example, a user on their touch screen mobile requires larger buttons for easy navigation and a more lightweight site for faster loading over a mobile network. In addition to this, a user on their mobile will often be looking for specific information, commonly a phone number or address. Modern mobiles allow you to interact directly with the phone to make phone calls and give directions with a tap of a button. Have a think about what your mobile users may require on the run and how to deliver it without interfering with the native user journey.
4. The flare.
Gone are the days of static websites; a website is now an interactive experience. The more exciting you can make the information, the better. Consider the little things, like what happens when a user hovers over a button; is there a way you can make text more interesting to read? A little can go a long way, and a great website encourages people to share it with friends and other companies that may be looking for your product or service.
User experience is a lot more than just making sure your audience can access the information they require; it’s about guiding the user to your end destination via a memorable and enjoyable journey that they will want to talk about.