What do you want your website to do? It’s a difficult question that only some of the most successful website and business owners can answer clearly and quickly. Direction and intention are vital to creating a website that converts, sells, or convinces. There is, however, a more important question lurking, waiting to be answered:
What do your users want your website to do?
The more data we’re able to gather about how people interact with their devices and with the internet, the more we’ve begun to understand that how people behave can tell us a lot more than what they say. In an environment as oversaturated with content and advertisements as the internet, users need good reasons to interact with you, and you need to provide those reasons.
Let’s all make a promise to remember one thing in 2018:
At the end of the day, if you’re not thinking about the user, their questions, desires, and dreams, you’re not building a successful website.
So, by all means, read the articles about how to get a higher conversion rate, but remember what conversions are. Users following through. Base all your research on those fundamental truths.
Here’s how to revamp your website for users in 2018!
Ancient Website? Time to Redesign for Usability
One of the biggest questions you need to ask about your users and customers is: how do they interact with you? During which activities? On which devices?
In 2016 mobile searches accounted for 60 percent of all search traffic. That’s a trend that hasn’t slowed down. Making things more complicated, tablets are popping up as significant portions of search too.
When people think about web design, they often think about the visual beauty of the site. Logos and colors, layout, lightboxes, beautiful pictures and stylish videos. The most important element of web design, however, is usability. The degree to which your website is easy to use can even affect SEO rankings, which directly impact the amount of traffic your site receives from Google.
The visual elements of a website are vital, but they should all serve the purpose of usability. What does the logo and the feel of the site tell a user about who your business is? How do visual cues lead a user through the page, where does the eye focus, and is the most important information being presented clearly?
All of those questions need to be considered across all screen sizes and in all situations, a user might interact with your business. You should prioritize responsive design that fits all screen sizes and make it as easy as possible to navigate your website.
Users Need Security, So Don’t Skimp
Cybersecurity is an ever-evolving field, but the basic relationship never changes. Bad actors like hackers are constantly probing security systems to find weaknesses, and security professionals are constantly trying to keep up.
Security is an ongoing, active consideration for any business, especially if you hold information about users. Safety and privacy are a huge aspect of user-friendly design. Woefully, few companies perform cybersecurity risk assessments but they are an important part of consistent user-friendly behavior. Stay up to date on news, get an external security audit, and invest in the technology to keep customer information safe.
Know Customers By Examining Behavior
There’s a lot that data analysis can tell you. As with everything suggested here, it’s important to always keep your core focus in mind. Analytics can tell you a huge amount, but remember who you’re gathering data about, why you’re gathering it, and what use you’re going to put it to.
What use is that? Making the experience better. There are four main types of business analytics, and they all perform different purposes and give you different sets of information. Used in conjunction, they can help you optimize your website for ease of experience by the user, which will increase your bottom line.
- Descriptive analytics tells you how a user behaves.
- Diagnostic analytics explains the reasoning behind their behavior.
- Predictive analytics uses past data to make predictions about how a user will behave.
- Prescriptive analytics provides insights into how you can encourage users to behave in a certain way.
Getting your traffic and conversions back on track means making informed changes to your site. You need information to do that, but data isn’t useful in a vacuum. You need a clear sense of where you are, what your goals are, and where you’re currently going to make the kinds of changes you need. Leverage everything you know about your niche, your customers, and constantly ask if they truly have an incentive to do what you want them to do. Is that incentive enough?
It’s time to reframe our goals. Yes, you know exactly what an ideal conversion rate is, and what kinds of returns you need on an investment. Unless you make the problems and demands of the average user forefront in your mind, those metrics you shoot for will remain dreams.
Author Bio: Avery Phillips