Checking Your Site for User-Friendliness

By Samantha Salter
Jan 29,2015
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A monumental part of achieving success with your website and online presence is creating a friendly user experience for all of your visitors to work with. If a site loads leisurely, is difficult to use, or is hard on the eyes, there are countless other web pages that can be found just as easily as yours. To keep consumers on your page and interested in what you have to offer, here are a few tips to help boost your site’s usability and convenience factor:

Start with Straightforward Navigation
In order for your visitors to easily and effortlessly glide through the various pages of your website, it's critical to make sure your navigation is easy to understand and functions as it's intended to. Double check that your menu items clearly indicate where the visitors will end up if they click on them, and similarly, always verify that the sub menu items correlate with the correct main menu option. The more quickly and efficiently your users can steer themselves in the right direction and find what they came looking for, the less likely it is that they will leave your site and find a competitor's. 

Be Easy to Connect With
Help your users easily connect with you by making your physical location, hours of availability, email address, phone number, and social media channels easy to find. A clearly visible "Contact Us" page that lists all of the ways you can be reached will make you appear more accessible and willing to accommodate the needs of your online visitors, and including the primary contact information (phone number and email) at the top of the header on each of your web pages alerts them on how they can get in touch without even having to leave the page they're currently viewing. 

Make Your Focus Clear
The titles, headers, content, and graphics laid out on your site should come together to reflect the purpose of each web page they're placed on so that the reader automatically knows what types of products or services are being unveiled. Pay special attention to your homepage; this is often the first part of your website that people discover, and if users have to do any amount of investigative work to uncover the reason behind your site's existence, they might decide it's not worth the effort and go elsewhere. 

Let Your Content Be Easy to Read
When it comes to website content, readers like to be able to skim over the material before they fully dive in and go through it word by word, so make sure you're using bold headers and descriptive titles that allow individuals to quickly comprehend your main points. Also, like we mentioned in our last blog, it's important to provide enough information so users have a better understanding of your industry and services but not in so much detail that the information goes straight over their heads. Before you start writing, take some time to piece together who your average visitor is and what they already know; this will give you a great starting point to build from and will help you choose words that deliver the impact you want. 

Pick Your Aesthetics Strategically 
While it's easy to get carried away planning the aesthetic layout of your site, you want to choose something that compliments and expresses what your brand does without leaving the user feeling overwhelmed or sidetracked. Too many pop-ups, images, or videos on the same page can create a cluttered, chaotic look, so try to find a peaceful middle ground in creating a design that is eye-catching and pleasing to look at but doesn't try to integrate too many ideas at the same time. On a related note, pick a font size, type, and color that won't strain your users' eyes; the goal is to create a virtual space that users can spend a fair amount of time on and still remain comfortable and at ease. 

Consistently Test for Functionality 
One of the most imperative aspects to creating a friendly user experience is implementing regular maintenance inspections to confirm that your website functions flawlessly. Check to make sure your site doesn't contain any broken links or 404 pages, routinely test all of your online forms to verify that they still operate as they should, and frequently update your site with modern security software to keep you and your users safe, especially if you take payments online. If your site was developed to be compatible across various platforms, be sure to perform your "check-up" on each one (mobile, tablet, etc.). 

Ensuring that your site is simple to navigate, utilize, and comprehend really comes down to how much effort you're willing to put into understanding how the end user thinks and operates. The more direct and to the point you can create your site to appear, the better experience you'll give your audience, and you will start to see just how beneficial having an efficiently developed website can be for your brand. 

Websnare can help with all of your web-related needs, and if your site could use some enhancement, get in touch with us today!

Published in Websnare Blog

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