It can be easy to get hung up on the aesthetics when it comes to designing a new website or re-designing an existing one. However, what many companies don’t understand is that if you truly want to achieve brand awareness, then you’ll have to focus on more than just how the website looks. There are more than a billion websites all across the internet, so when someone visits yours you need to make sure that it has been optimised for the user. It’s important to focus on how easy it is for visitors to navigate your website as well as thinking about the overall user experience. Below are some the areas you need to look at from the perspective of the visitors to your website.
Create a simple design
The look and feel of your website is important, however most visitors have come to your site either to buy products and services, or to find some more information. Having unnecessary design elements that do not serve any functional purpose on your site can make it more difficult for the visitor to accomplish what they are trying to do. Simplicity can be easily achieved on your site. One example would be with the use of colours – don’t use too many as this detracts from your brand. Another example would to be only use graphics if it’ll help the visitor complete an action, such as signing up to a mailing list. Too many graphics can cause the user to get distracted. A clean, simple design will look instantly more professional and make your site more user-friendly.
Navigation should be clear
Clear navigation for your visitor is imperative. Ideally, a visitor should be able to arrive on your homepage and not have to think about where to click next. This process should be as simple and pain-free as possible. If it’s too complicated then you will risk your visitor clicking off your site with an un-satisfied experience. A few pointers to take into consideration are:
- Make sure to include a navigation bar at the top of the site
- Have only a few key menu items where important information can be found
- Don’t offer too many navigational options – typically its good not to go more than 2 levels deep
Accessibility for mobile users
Making sure that your website is accessible is vital. The use of tablets to access the internet grew 30% between 2013/2015, and during the same time period smartphone internet consumption grew by 78%. This means that if you really want to be able to provide the best experience for your users your site needs to be compatible with different devices and operating systems. At a high level this would mean investing into a site that can be highly flexible and has a responsive design. To fit the dimensions of any device, responsive design automatically resizes and rearranges content so the user can easily view the content across your website and continue to navigate easily.
It’s important your website provides a stratifying experience. By looking at your website from the perspective of your visitors you will be able to increase usability and create a pleasant visitor experience.
For more advice getting started with your website design, give me a call today on 020 7100 0726.