Websites have evolved into immersive platforms that engage, entertain, and inform users. A user-friendly website not only captures attention but also eliminates common frustrations like slow loading times or poorly displayed content.
We've all encountered websites with issues: images that won't load, confusing layouts, or content that doesn't fit our screens. In such situations, we often abandon the site. Failing to create a user-friendly website means losing potential customers before they get to know you.
To keep users engaged and let your content shine, we've compiled five essential tips to make your site more user-friendly.
1. Prioritise Site Speed Start by ensuring that your content loads quickly, ideally within two seconds. Research shows that about 50% of users leave a site that takes more than three seconds to load. This timeframe includes loading all page assets, such as images, scripts, and style sheets.
To assess your site's speed, use tools like Google's Page Speed Insights, Pingdom, or Cloudflare. Regardless of your CMS platform, whether it's Shopify, WordPress, or another, these tools provide insights and suggestions to improve site speed. Two simple steps you can take are optimising your server speed and compressing images to reduce loading times.
2. Enhance Visual Appeal Users expect well-designed landing pages with engaging visual elements like images and videos, rather than overwhelming text. Images showcasing your products, team, or brand values can convey your identity more effectively than words.
To create a user-friendly website, use colours strategically to enhance visual appeal. A balanced colour scheme provides contrast between visual elements, strengthening your brand's identity. Ensure that background colours provide enough contrast for easy text readability. Keep text concise and legible.
3. Streamline Navigation Visitors expect a navigation bar at the top of the page with clear headings for easy browsing. Your navigation bar should feature concise headings that expand into dropdown menus housing additional content.
To encourage user movement across your site, include clear calls to action (CTAs) that guide them to other pages or encourage specific actions. For instance, simplify the conversion journey with a prominent, conversion-focused CTA.
A clear navigation system is key to a smooth user journey and, consequently, a user-friendly website. You can also incorporate links to your social media pages to promote engagement across multiple channels.
4. Provide Relevant Information Users want to quickly understand what your business offers and what sets you apart. When creating content, focus on conveying your unique selling points concisely. Avoid unnecessary fluff in your copy.
Ensure that essential information is readily available, helping users make informed decisions. On specific pages like product or service descriptions, offer detailed information for those interested while allowing users to choose what they want to see.
5. Optimise for Mobile Approximately 60% of website traffic comes from mobile devices, so ensure your site functions seamlessly on mobile. Test how your site appears on various screen sizes, and optimise accordingly.
Mobile users have different behaviours, often spending less time on a page. They expect to grasp your site's essence within a few scrolls. Prioritise content that suits smaller screens.
Conclusion To enhance user experience, put yourself in the user's shoes. They know little about your business and are eager for unique content. Aesthetics initially engage users, but it's content and layout that maintain their interest.
Remember, your website is a platform for information. In a competitive digital landscape, a user-friendly website gives you the best chance of capturing and retaining users' attention.