The world of user experience (or UX, as it’s known in the industry) is dramatically changing as web developers and content creators continue to discover new ways to enhance visitor journeys online.
The downside of this is that it means your website can quickly start to feel outdated or clunky if you don’t keep up-to-date with the latest changes and trends in UX. That said, here are ten top tips to dramatically improve your website’s user experience while ensuring that your brand and website message still shine through.
It’s a fact: visitors will abandon your website if it finds that your pages are taking too long to load. Even a delay of two seconds has been found to trigger abandonment rates as high as 87% – if that’s not reason to address your page speed, we don’t know what is!
There are numerous ways in which you can optimise your page speed: choose the right image formats, avoid bad CSS, minimise file requests and most importantly, use a caching system.
Using bullet points to break up large bodies of text is a great way to enhance your user experience. Many users don’t want to sit and scroll through paragraphs of text to find the answers they’re looking for – but by breaking it up into easy-to-read bullet points, they can quickly find the information they’re seeking and won’t leave your site to look elsewhere.
It’s not only your brand that needs consistency – your website does, too. Everything from paragraph spacing to photo choices should be coherent and consistent between your pages (and on the same page) to create a great user experience. If your formats, fonts and colour choices vary wildly from one page to the next, you’re not only damaging your brand, you’re confusing potential customers and causing them to lose trust in your unpredictable site.
Optimising your site for mobile usage has never been more important. Millions upon millions of people are accessing websites from their smartphones and tablets nowadays, and the bounce rate for those who don’t have responsive sites are sky-high. Google has even started penalising websites that aren’t mobile-friendly – so there’s double the incentive to ensure your site is easy to navigate and user-friendly, no matter what screen it’s being viewed on.
Some of the most successful, user-friendly websites in the world utilise a lot of white space. Think of Apple, for example – the website is slick and stylish, but the designers aren’t afraid to position a few strategic words or images in plenty of negative space when they have something important to say. White space can do the hard work of emphasising your products for you – but it’s important to strike a balance, or your website could just appear empty.