Websites have changed tremendously in the past few years. What used to be a place where you simply house key information about your company, which was mostly in text form, has now become a platform where you showcase your offerings and value to customers. And since it’s a powerful tool that brings together all your marketing efforts and connects you to your audience, it’s essential that your website is at its top shape all the time. Have you built a user-friendly website for your brand?
Fortunately, you don’t really have to be an expert web developer to provide a pleasant experience for your site visitors. Here, we share with you seven actionable tips for how you can turn your current website into a more user-friendly one.
How to Make a More User-Friendly Website
1. Always have your contact information visible.
When visitors find something interesting on your website, they’ll want to know more about it before buying or subscribing. So, if your contact details aren’t conveniently displayed, you risk losing their business because they probably won’t spend time looking for it.
Instead, they’ll just go to a competitor who made it easier to get in touch.
Have a dedicated “Contact Us” page with all the important information. Include your office location, e-mail address, phone numbers, and customer service hotline. Consider setting up a user inquiry form or live chat option for people who have specific questions but don’t want to call.
Make sure to also add icons or links to your social media channels. Having them visible on your contact page and other strategic places on your website will make it a lot easier for people to share your content. Check out these buttons in the header.
Your contact information should always be visible, no matter where a visitor is on your site. Don’t make them search for it, because they won’t!
2. Include images and videos.
People are drawn to sites that use images and videos. These make the pages look more attractive and interesting because they break up the wall of texts. They take less time and effort to consume, and people ultimately stay on the page longer as a result. More importantly, they’re effective emotional triggers that draw visitors in and get them engaged with your content.
When selecting images and videos, be sure they’re aligned with your products and services. Choose only the graphics that are relevant to and supportive of your brand messaging and character.
If you go with stock graphics, make sure to use high-quality ones from credible libraries like Pexels, Pixabay, Shuttershock, or Unsplash.
Not a skilled designer? No problem! Canva can help you create professional-quality graphics with its ready-made layouts. (Plus, it easily integrates with e-clincher!)
You can also use your own assets, like behind-the-scenes photos from a product shoot or videos of your employees at work. These are great for showing who you are as a brand, attracting visitors, and connecting with current and potential customers.
Bring your website to life with images and videos. Text is overwhelming. It gets boring, and it doesn’t immediately trigger an emotional response like images and video can. Mix it up! Variety is the spice of life.
Now, to be clear, we’re not telling you to avoid text entirely. Obviously, it’s needed. But when you do use it, you want to do so in a specific way. And that brings us to our next point.
3. Keep text concise and to-the-point.
Visitors get turned off if they arrive on your page and see a TON of written content. They will not spend time browsing every page to find what they need. Rather, they might leave and head to your competitors’ pages. That’s why it’s important to give them in-depth information right away.
If you’re writing in paragraphs, use headings that will guide your visitors when scanning through your pages and content. Be sure to include keywords to capture the right audience and clearly state your message.
Similarly, keep your texts between two to three lines. (Notice how we always keep our paragraphs short in our blog posts?) These are easier and faster to read than large paragraphs.
You can use bullet points when pointing out benefits, key features, or step-by-step processes, and highlight words and sentences you’d want to emphasize.
Essentially, having the proper formatting is key to making a user-friendly website. It will help users quickly identify details, clearly understand your message, and make your site look cleaner and more attractive.
Bonus tip: Keep your language simple and easy-to-understand. Don’t confuse your users with complex terms and specifics just because you want to sound smart. Not only can this be a huge turn-off to readers, but they just won’t understand the point you’re trying to make. Communicate in a way that they understand. Remember, this is really about them, not you.
4. A User-Friendly Website Looks Good Across All Devices
Many (if not most) of your visitors will be looking at your site using their smartphones. So, it’s essential that your website is easy to navigate and responsive regardless of what device people use.
Navigation differs between desktop and mobile. This means that buttons and links must be easy to click, and graphics should still be high-quality even on small screens. If you’re not sure of your site’s mobile-friendliness, check out Google’s Mobile Friendly Test to see if your pages conform with the guidelines.
Let’s use e-clincher as an example. Even on mobile, we make our menu easy to find and click through. You never have to go digging for the information you need.
It’s not just the device you need to consider, either. Similarly, visitors may be using browsers other than Google. Thus, test out and optimize your site to ensure that it looks and functions just as well on Firefox, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Safari, and other browsers.
(And remember, you can see the browsers and devices your users are accessing your website on from a tool like Google Analytics.)
Keeping your site mobile-friendly and easily accessible across all devices and browsers will make for a user-friendly website and ultimately improve your site performance.
5. Optimize the speed.
As you may already know, people want things now. Social media in particular has put us in this state of instant gratification. And that now includes expecting your site to load within a few seconds. If it doesn’t, you can expect people to leave, because they don’t have the patience to wait.
That’s why optimizing your website’s speed is vital in attracting and keeping visitors on it.
“Okay, but how can I do this?” you ask. Here are a few tips to try:
- Check out your site’s speed using Google’s PageSpeed Insights and get some suggestions for how to improve your load time.
- Compress the file size of your images before uploading them on your page.
- Remove videos, multimedia, and other elements that are no longer needed.
6. Keep the design simple and consistent.
When users land on your page, they’ll want to know what to do, where to go, and how to find what they’re looking for – right away.
The navigation bar is their guide within your site, so it’s important to keep it intuitive and visibly positioned. You can test out how many categories and what tab arrangements, locations, and wording work best for the users.
It’s also vital to choose one to two colors that best represent your brand’s identity. As a rule of thumb, your company website’s color should be aligned with all your other business collaterals. We know it’s fun to get creative and think outside the box, and you should! Just bear in mind that you don’t want to overwhelm people with too many colors, patterns, and styles.
Plus, that would take away from the ultimate goal: to deliver the content they want and convert them into loyal followers.
Finally, all pages should be consistent – including font colors and sizes, button styles, spacing, graphics, and all other elements. This will minimize the chances of people getting confused and lost while navigating your pages. Make your digital presence immediately recognizable. Help people become more familiar and comfortable with you.
Remember, creativity doesn’t need to be complicated. And having a coherent design throughout your site will help provide a beautiful experience for your visitors.
7. Use strong CTAs.
Whether it’s to make a purchase or to register for a newsletter, site visitors will want to know what next steps to take while they’re on your page. That’s why having enticing CTAs (read: call-to-action) that are clickable and easy to locate is essential in making a user-friendly website.
CTAs that use action words make it easier for users to navigate your site, locate what they’re looking for, and get what they want. For example, CTAs like “Get Started Here” or “Sign Up Now” tend to perform better because they’re action-oriented and time-sensitive.
For example, on our homepage, we have a big blue button immediately visible telling people to start their free trial.
And speaking of buttons, be sure to split-test those with hyperlinks. Buttons typically get more clicks, but it’s always a smart idea to test, test, test.
Essentially, you have to clearly guide your visitors to move forward instead of making them wonder what’s next. Don’t assume that they’ll know what action to take and actually take it. Because the odds are that they won’t.
The Key Takeaway
Having a user-friendly website can help take your business to new heights. And with these seven simple yet actionable tips, you can instantly provide a better experience for your site visitors.
However, keep in mind that as with everything online, things can and will change from time-to-time. This means that you must be open and ready to make improvements consistently. It’s also vital to test everything and see things from the perspective of your users.
And remember that the goal is to provide them with a valuable experience on your site, which could potentially lead to new contacts, opportunities, and sales. So yes, a user-friendly website is incredibly important. But so is delivering the kind of content they want, and in the way that they want it.
How else can you make your website more user-friendly? Let us know in the comments below!
Wherever you are in your digital marketing and social media efforts, e-clincher is here for you. Sign up today for your free trial and experience what the buzz is all about!