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How do you ensure a website is user-friendly?

website creation shown with jigsaw pieces

Creating a user-friendly website is crucial for providing a positive user experience, increased visitor engagement, and which will ultimately lead to better conversion rates. A user-friendly website ensures that visitors can easily navigate, find information, and complete desired actions, such as making a purchase, completing a contact form or signing up for your newsletter. It enhances user satisfaction, encourages longer visits, and promotes return visits. A positive user experience also contributes to better search engine rankings and supports your brand’s reputation. Ultimately, a user-friendly website is an investment in retaining and attracting customers, boosting conversions, and achieving the desired outcomes for your online presence.

Here are the 15 main factors that ensure a website is user-friendly.

  1. Responsive Design: Your website should be accessible and look good on various devices and screen sizes, including desktops, tablets, and smartphones. A responsive design ensures content adapts to different screen resolutions. Although this has been the standard practice for web development for over a decade, there are still many old websites out there that are not responsive.responsive website shown on different screen sizes
  2. Clear and Intuitive Navigation: The website should have a logical and easy-to-follow navigation structure. Users should be able to find what they’re looking for quickly and easily through your menu structure.
  3. Readable Content: Use readable fonts, appropriate font sizes, and proper line spacing. Ensure that text has high contrast with the background and is legible for all users, including those with visual impairments.
  4. Clear Call to Action (CTA): Use well-defined and prominently placed CTAs that guide users toward the actions you want them to take, such as signing up, making a purchase, or contacting you.
  5. Engaging Layout: A clean and visually appealing layout with a balanced use of white space, images, and text helps keep users engaged and focused on your content.
  6. Consistent Branding: Maintain a consistent colour scheme, typography, and design elements throughout the website. This helps reinforce your brand identity and makes the website feel cohesive.
  7. Content Quality: Ensure that your content is well-written, informative, and up-to-date. Avoid grammatical errors and provide valuable information that meets user needs. If you can satisfy users with good quality content then you are more likely to satisfy Google and this should help with your Search Engine ranking. For more information on quality content and website ranking, have a look at our article Easiest Way to improve your Search Engine Ranking.
  8. Intuitive Forms: If your website has forms, keep them as simple and user-friendly as possible. Offer helpful hints, validation checks, and clear labels to guide users through the process.
  9. Feedback Mechanisms: Allow users to provide feedback and contact you easily through contact forms or chat support. Respond to their inquiries promptly.
  10. Fast and Effective Customer Support: If your website provides products or services, offer responsive customer support through email, chat, or phone to assist users with their questions or issues.
  11. Fast Loading Speed: Slow-loading pages can frustrate users and lead to them going elsewhere. As a guide, a website should load in under 3 seconds on a desktop. Optimise your website for speed by compressing images, using efficient code, and employing content delivery networks (CDNs).
  12. Mobile-Friendly: Mobile users make up a significant portion of website traffic. Make sure your website is optimised for mobile devices to provide a seamless experience.
  13. Accessibility: Ensure your website complies with web accessibility standards (e.g. Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, WCAG) to accommodate users with disabilities. This includes providing alternative text for images, keyboard navigation, font sizing methods and appropriate colour contrast throughout the site.
  14. Error Handling: If users encounter errors or fill out forms incorrectly, provide clear and helpful error messages to assist them in rectifying the issue.
  15. Security and Trust: Users need to feel safe when interacting with your website. Use SSL certificates to secure data, provide clear privacy policies, and display trust badges or certifications where applicable.

Ongoing activities:
In addition to the above factors, there are a couple of activities that are very useful to do as an ongoing activity.
User Testing: Regularly test your website with actual users to identify pain points and areas for improvement. Collect feedback and make necessary adjustments.
Analytics: Implement website analytics tools to monitor user behaviour and identify areas where users may be dropping off or encountering issues. Use data to make informed decisions for improvements.

If you would like to find out how we can help you gain more customers through your website, please get in touch for a free consultation.

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