Studies have shown that 55% of consumers spend around 15 seconds on a website before they decide to click away. Why? Well, because people have options. With just under 200 million active websites, if your potential customer doesn’t get what they’re looking for on your site, they can easily turn to any one of your other competitors.
As a small business owner, it’s important to try to extend those 15 seconds. Because, the longer your website visitor sticks around, the more of a chance you have to lead them through your sales funnel and convert.
You already know that having a strong online presence is essential for your business. But what about the user experience?
What is User Experience?
The Nielsen Norman Group states that “user experience encompasses all aspects of the end-user’s interaction with the company, its service, and its products.”
Many people tend to confuse usability with user experience. While usability focuses on how effective and efficient your product is, user experience includes the overall experience your customer has when using your product.
Why is improving your site’s user experience valuable?
Well, studies have shown that websites with great user experience see better conversion rates.
Taking the time to improve your user’s experience will prove to be invaluable. It will boost your conversions and also show your customer how customer-centered your business is.
In this post, we’ll discuss some of the most important elements you can implement on your site to help you improve the user experience and finally start to see the conversions you’re aiming for.
5 Steps to Improve Your Site’s User Experience
1. Start By Understanding Your Users’ Behaviors
You can’t improve your users’ experience if you don’t know how they are currently interacting with your website. For this, you can use heatmap tools.
Heatmap tools help you gain a better understanding of valuable information, such as where your users often click, when they stop scrolling, and how they use your site.
There are several heatmap tools and plugins you can use to help you visualize, track, and interpret user interactions.
Arming yourself with this information will help guide where you put some essential elements of your website, such as your CTA buttons.
2. Place Your Call To Action Buttons Strategically
Your Call To Action (CTA) button is the button that will lead your visitor towards your goal conversion. The big question is – where do you place them to help boost your conversions?
You need to put them along the natural path your user will follow while on your site.
This shouldn’t be mistaken with the path you think your user follows.
After following the above first step of evaluating heatmaps, you’ll be clear on which sections of your website gain the most attention from users and how far they tend to scroll. Placing your CTA buttons in areas with the most activity will help you start to see an increase in conversions.
If you have long-form sales pages, landing pages, or blog posts, you’ll likely have multiple CTA buttons on a page. Be careful to avoid placing them on top of each other. Placing various CTA buttons adjacent to each other, or even in close proximity, can leave your user feeling confused about which action you’d like them to take. And so, instead of taking action, they’ll just end up leaving the page entirely. To help boost conversions, ensure that you separate them with some sidebar elements and copy.
3. Videos Can Help Improve Your Landing Pages
Video landing pages allow users to experience your message with a simple click. Over the past few years, we’ve seen more companies introducing videos into their landing pages and seeing an increase in engagement and conversion rates. Why? You have to remember the most important element about your customers – they’re human beings. And human beings are visual beings.
Opting for videos on your landing pages will help your user better absorb the message you want them to and improve their experience with your content.
4. Keep Your Website Design Simple
Studies have shown that users prefer a minimalistic approach when it comes to websites. This makes sense. Just think about the last time you were on a “busy” website. Did that inspire you to stick around or immediately leave?
When it comes to website design, simplicity is key. This can be achieved by reducing unnecessary elements on your site, like background ads, graphics, or images.
Didn’t I just mention that people are visual beings? Yes, that’s true. But a flood of images, videos, ads, and graphics all at the same time often results in confusing and overwhelming a user, rather than inspiring them to stick around.
The task of creating a professional website design with all the right elements can be daunting. If you’re a beginner, consider using online tutorials, such as the ones available on LaunchParty. The site helps beginners, small business owners, and students set up, design, and improve their website designs. Its affordability is also a great drawing factor for small business and startup owners who are bootstrapping.
5. Improve Your Website’s Speed
Following on from the previous point of decluttering your site, reducing unnecessary elements will also help to improve your website’s loading speed.
Remember what we spoke about earlier – you have around 15 seconds to make a great impression on your website visitor. Having a page that takes a long time to load isn’t an option.
The first step here is to find out how slow or fast your pages load. You can do this by conducting a speed test.
If you find that your pages take a long time to load, there are several measures you can take to help reduce the speed, including optimizing your images and videos.
Take Your Time in Working on Improving Your Website’s User Experience
It can be a time-consuming process to improve your website’s user experience. But as highlighted above, this will be rewarding for both you and your customers.
Your customer will have a positive experience with your site, products, and overall brand. You, on the other hand, will have the satisfaction of not only boosting your conversion rates but also leaving a lasting impression.
Now get out there and win over your customers, one user at a time!
About the Author: Khanyi Molomo is the freelance writer behind Iconic Writing, where she works closely with small businesses to create content that tells their stories and helps to create valuable connections with their market.