Are you concerned that your new website experience won’t be enough to give visitors what they’re looking for? You have reason to be worried.
Studies show that 89% of people move on to competitors if they experience a poor website user experience. If you don’t do enough to give your users a great experience, you’ll lose fans and business.
If you’re asking yourself the question, “how can I learn how to improve my website?” this post will help. Keep reading to learn four tips that will help you create a better website.
1. Create a Minimalist Design
It’s harder than ever to grab someone’s attention on the internet today. There are a lot of distractions and other websites out there. You can’t afford to create a website that makes it hard for people to find the information they’re looking for.
A minimalistic design lets you focus on the most critical information you have to offer. As soon as someone lands on one of your pages, they should know right away what that page has to offer. Keep your most relevant information above the fold so people can find it without digging into your content.
The other thing people do today is scan pages. You’ll need to make clear headers for each of your sections so your visitors can see what content your page has for them.
Keep your page visuals minimal as people are scrolling through your content. Bloated sidebars and other distractions lead attention away from the primary focus of your site. If this happens, people might miss the information they’re on your website to find.
2. Focus on Performance
A fast-loading website is essential if you want to compete on the internet today. Just like a minimal design helps visitors find what they’re looking for quickly, a fast-loading website gives them your content in a timely manner.
Even with widespread cable internet, you can’t count on people having fast connections. More than 50% of all internet traffic now comes from mobile users. There’s no guarantee that their mobile connections always have a stable connection.
The first place to improve website performance is with your images.
Run your images through a lossless image compression program. You can do this on your computer desktop yourself or install a plugin from your website software to handle this for you.
The next step is to set up caching for your site. Since most websites use pre-designed software to run, you can use their plugin infrastructures to install caching software. This software will create a static version of your website files, so visitors don’t make database calls that slow down your page load time.
Another way to implement caching is with a content delivery network. A CDN saves a static version of your file on various servers across the world. Doing this allows your visitors to connect to a server closer to them to reduce latency between them and your site.
3. Design for Mobile Users
You don’t only have to worry about your page speed for mobile users. Your website will load on devices of many different screen sizes. Unfortunately, those devices won’t resize your website to make it look good on those devices.
It’s up to you to design your site for mobile users. This means your site will need to have alternate designs for smaller screens. One of the best ways to do this is with responsive design.
A responsive web design is one that modifies itself based on the screen sizes of your visitors’ devices. Your site will detect screen sizes before your site is displayed for your visitors. Once it knows that size, your site design will change based on the size it detects.
Of course, it isn’t easy to build a design for large screens and chop it up for smaller devices. To make things easier on yourself and your designers, start with a mobile-first approach.
A mobile-first approach is one where you design for the smallest size possible in the beginning. Once your design is done for small devices, you can begin adding elements for larger screens. It’s much easier to add design elements than remove them later in the process, so you’ll save development time and money.
4. Make Use of Heatmaps
Your job isn’t complete after your site is up and running. While you might have done a great job at getting your design and content together, there’s a good chance that it isn’t perfect. If you want to perfect your website, you’ll need to run tests on your design.
You can do this by doing split-tests on different website elements on your site. A split-test is a small change to one part of your design. It can be the color of a button, adding or removing an image, or any other small change you can think of.
Your goal is to compare the conversion rate of your visitors before and after you make this change. If your change results in a more effective website, then your test was successful.
One of the ways to get split-test results is by using a heatmap. Heatmaps are a way to see what visitors do when they visit your site visually. You’ll get an image that shows you what parts of your site get the most attention.
You can use this data to see if your split-test element is getting the extra attention you desire. Read this Decible.com article to learn more about everything heatmaps offer.
Your Work Is Never Finished When Trying to Create a Better Website
The web design world is always changing, and you can be sure that your competitors will stay updated on the latest trends. You’ll need to keep your website up to date yourself if you want to have a better website than your competitors.
Keep the design tips for website development above in mind when it’s time for a website redesign. If you want to learn more about using the internet to get noticed online, head back to our blog. You’ll learn about the newest tools that will make the difference in your efforts.