According to award winning web designer Ran Segall, over 90% of users visiting your site will leave within 10 seconds.
You don’t have time to dilly dally old friend.
Here’s 10 steps to make your website more effective:
So often, you land on website home pages and you don’t know what to do as a site visitor. You might not even know what the site you have landed on is even for.
Start with a strong value proposition – this is one sentence which explains why your product or service is valuable to the user. This will entice people to scroll further.
Clear Calls to Action – 70% of small and medium business websites include no clear Call to Action for anything other than contact forms. This is a huge problem because the visitor needs to be guided when they land on the site. Buttons and links should be instructive and obvious.
Engaging and concise content – be specific about your product or service. The more effort you put in to show your attention to detail with products, shipping, customer feedback etc the more likely people will want to engage with your brand.
We are social creatures. We trust other people’s opinions and views of brands than whatever the brands are saying about themselves. The customers that love what you do will be your greatest marketing too so collect testimonials!
Use positive testimonials and statistics to build trust and credibility with users. This can be in the form of logos too eg. If you have worked with trusted brands, you can build your own brand credibility by associating yourself with these brands.
21% of millennials no longer use a desktop computer to go online. On average, mobile internet users spend nearly 3 hours online every day. This number (worryingly)is only increasing. If your website looks like the desktop version mashed in to a mobile screen size, the user experience will be terrible and people will abandon your site the second it finishes loading.
Make sure your website is responsive to different screen sizes. Layouts that may look good on desktop don't on mobile so just be aware.
A 2-second delay in load time resulted in abandonment rates of up to 87%. This means ensuring your page loads quickly is vital.
Images –JPEG files are the best to upload for images with lots of different colours (rather than SVG or PNG) because they already have drastically reduced file sizes. Ensure the file format is JPEG for all site images and then reduce the file size further by changing image quality.
Faster Hosting – The closer your server is to your visitors, the faster your site will load. If you have a small web hosting service, they probably won’t have servers strategically distributed worldwide and as a result, the load speeds will be dramatically slower for anyone visiting the website from abroad. Webflow, the website builder that I use is built on top of Amazon AWS servers so I can personally recommend Amazon AWS.
Animations – Keep animations and interactions minimal when possible. Animations can cause a serious lag which will affect the user experience so be tactical about these. If your website jitters and chugs when loading, the animations will look terrible anyway!
Video – Don’t upload a video directly to your site. Embed the video from Youtube or Vimeo so that your own website is not slowed down. This also means the video is easily shareable so it’s a win win.
Want more info about making page load faster? Click here
Did you know that organic listings on the first page of Google receive 90% of clicks on the search engine. This means that if you don’t want to pay for adverts to get on the first page of Google, you need to be strategic. It’s unlikely you will be found on the second page.
Google MyBusiness Listing – When it comes to measuring localised search results, Google measures three factors: Relevance, Distance and Prominence. You are more likely to come up on localised searches if you have a business listing with Google.
Keywords and phrases – know what people are typing in on search engines, what format they want that content in and how to make the most valuable content for them. and then insert these key words in your website. Google Trends, AnswerThePublic, SpyFuKeyword Research Tool are all useful here.
Blog – Google wants to serve up relevant content to their audiences. If you create content that is better than what’s already out there for a particular search query,Google will reward you for it. More people will link to it and it will grow. Want to know more about this? Read '7 Reasons Why Your Business Should Have A Blog.'
Header Tags –Make sure your main titles are H1 which include the keywords or phrases and H2is sub-header. This way, Google will rank your page higher as it will recognise what your content is offering to a visitor.
If you want more SEO advice, time well spent is reading Moz’s Beginner’s Guide to SEO and Google’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Starter Guide
38% of people will stop visiting a website if its design is sloppy and unattractive.
This is quite complicated and completely depends on the website purpose and content format but these rules are quite universal:
Hierarchy – Titles should be bigger and contrasted with sub-header text and paragraph text. Imagine reading a word louder if the font size is bigger. If you want people to particularly know something on your website, you will want to make the font size bigger to make it louder and more obvious to them.
Avoid clutter – Keep the navigation simple or your users will get lost! Mega menus are terrible for users on a desktop so spare a thought for the poor mobile user.Highlight things you want to draw someone’s attention too and make navigating easy.
Consistency – It is generally best to have a consistent design throughout a website. Image style, colours, typography, interactions. If you go on your favourite websites (even if it’s a crazy animated new one), I bet that it’s consistent on the basics.
White Space – Let your content breathe by giving space around elements. The space around elements interacts with the perception of the elements themselves so pay attention to what you are not putting in space as much as what you are.
Typography – Generally, I find sticking to the same font family is a good way of keeping a website consistent. Whatever you do though, make sure you paragraph font is legible! No point having an edgy font that no one can read…
Colours – I stick to the 60-30-10 rule as much as possible. This is 60% a primary colour, 30% a secondary colour and 10% an accent colour to provide a colour pop. Too much colour is too busy for the eye and may detract from the CTA’s on your website.
Also, I feel like I should show you what not to do...
Having social buttons will allow people to share blog posts from your website to their feed. This is particularly helpful if are getting a lot of people to share it and your social icon says how many people are. This will be another form of social proof that you’re a reliable information source and worth sharing!
This one maybe obvious but make sure you are tracking your web pages to measure their success.You can see how people are arriving on your site, the gender, age group and other information which may inform how you display particular sections of your website and your content marketing strategy too.
Stop talking about what you do and start talking about how it helps people. What are the benefits for a customer? Why should anyone care about what you do over competitors?I wrote a blog recently about this so if you want to know more about the importance of benefits, click here
If you have followed these previous steps, your website is no doubt award winning and frankly perfect. But what if they leave your website and then you have no way of contacting them directly. This is where offering a downloadable e-book, a free discount coupon or possibly an exclusive competition entry is a good idea. In exchange, they give their email and possibly subscribe to your email list.
If you make sure your website quality is strong, they will be more likely to give their email and you can send them personalised content they will love.
Think Your Website Could Be Improved But Not Sure Where To Start?
Don’t worry, I’m here to help! Request a free review and we’ll record a 10-minute video reviewing your website. Let’s make your business a success.