A good first impression is everything.
This is especially true for websites, because you only have a few seconds to convince a user to browse your website.
Most users will only read 20% of the content on your page. If your website is too busy and without a specific message or call to action, people will bounce back.
Lack of traffic or high bounce rate on your website can be the result of poor website design. There are some things that can help you improve your website and web presence, but if done wrong, they could hurt your Google rankings and your conversation rate.
This is why it is common to delegate this responsibility to a web design agency. They use the best web design practices to bring the purpose and vision of your website to life. Here are some website design tips to improve your website:
speed up the loading of your site
Most Internet users have a very short attention span. Hence, users get discouraged and easily move forward when you have a website with slow loading time. This is something that you probably recklessly have on other people’s websites. In order for this not to happen, your website should ideally load within three seconds. Here are some ways to declutter your website and lower your bounce rate:
- Optimize images
- Minimize plugins
- Clear frame and themes
- Use a CDN (content delivery network)
- Use SSI (Server side Include)
- Optimize the home page
- Choose a good hosting platform
Make sure your website is responsive
Responsiveness of a site is the degree of flexibility of that website regardless of the device on which it has been accessed. This is especially important as an increasing number of users are now accessing the web through cellphones and tabs rather than laptops and computers.
So make sure your website is responsive. This means that your site should contain content and information but a different display; which changes automatically based on the user’s screen size.
Additionally, Google has made mobile-friendly sites a priority when searched on mobile devices. All the more reason to know what your site looks like on any device. Additionally, you can test if your site is responsive with Google’s mobile-friendly test.
Use easy navigation
With excellent navigation, your website appears more organized and has a less complicated interface. It is said that “patience is a virtue” but this virtue is lost in the digital world. When prospects visit your site, they want all the information they can get as quickly as possible.
A difficult interface results in an unsatisfactory user experience and this increases the bounce rate of your site. Here are some standard practices worth emulating:
- Your site’s menu bar should be located horizontally at the top of each page
- The search bar at the top of each page
- Your company logo should be visible in the upper left corner of every page. It should be clickable and link to the home page.
- A footer under your page, which contains your contact details and buttons that link to your various social media pages.
Use images wisely
Images, when overused, can be overwhelming to people. But, higher quality images used strategically could tell a story about who you are and what you stand for. That’s why it’s best to use real images of yourself, your team, and your space.
The alternative to using stock images is also good in terms of quality, but you risk appearing non-unique, generic, and less trustworthy. Most users may subconsciously attach negative emotions from their previous encounters with such images to your site. The last thing you want is to be guilty of such fickle associations.
Embrace white space
White space is also known as negative space (it doesn’t have to be white) refers to empty spaces around elements on a page that lack content or visuals.
White space could be used as an important design element to segment a page and increase readability. Research shows that using white space in the left and right margins, and between paragraphs, improves reader’s comprehension by 20%.
A lot of people are wary of white space because it takes up a lot of space which should take up useful content. The challenge is to prioritize what is important to share and the general readability of your site. White space can also be used to highlight specific details like a call to action or a value proposition.
Using the call to action correctly
The call to action is very important when it comes to the conversion rate. It’s the use of actionable words and suggestive colors to guide your users through the next conversion step. Examples of actionable words to use are download, start, register now, etc.
When considering the color of your CTA button, a good understanding of the psychology of color will be very helpful. For example, a predominantly blue or light blue site will work well with a contrasting yellow or orange CTA button.
Try not to use too many CTAs on the same page as this confuses users and discourages them from visiting your website next time. You should have one big, eye-catching CTA per page.
Beware of 404s and redirects
An increasing number of links on your site resulting in 404 errors can be frustrating for a user.
While redirects can benefit you for any reason (like ads), avoid using them whenever possible. Users find them boring and consider them a waste of time. And if there’s one consistent theme you’ve learned so far, it’s that web surfers don’t have time to waste.
404s and redirects subconsciously create the impression in the user’s mind that things are not working properly on your site. And the credibility of your site decreases as they bounce directly off a competitor’s site. Check if your links are working very regularly.
The importance of a great web design
No matter what activity you do online, your website will be very important to its success. This is exactly why you need to make sure that your website design is top notch. Great web design can revolutionize your website, reduce bounce rate, and increase your conversion rate. Following some of these tips can improve the user experience of your website.