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Great websites start with excellent website design. But in haste to have something beautiful, many businesses and bloggers cram too much on to their site – and forget about the user experiences.
Of course, if you built your website, or you worked with a team to make it, you know how it works. But the average person out there? Not a scooby.
The user experience should be your primary focus, even more so if you are creating content, you want to be read, shared, or have products you want to sell. Here are some things you should think about when it comes to making your website as user-friendly as possible.
Your website should always have plenty of mobile compatibility testing. Although many people believe it is enough to have a site that is responsive to the size of the technology, the person is using – mobile compatibility goes deeper than that. Use Google mobile testing site to see what it looks like, but remember to check the functionality too. AMP is a Google initiative which has a host of tools that will enable you to create great user experiences.
You have built your site, and you are in love with it. You really think the dashed line drop down menu is cute, and the colour is fabulous. But, you know where that tiny detail is. And, unless something is clearly marked as a menu, or has the typical three or four lines to signify options, people might not know how to use your site.
A mistake that many companies make is having too many options. There is a paradox of choice here. You want to give people as many options as you think they will need, but you need to understand that the more options people have, the longer it takes to make a choice – if they make one at all. So think about what are the most important subjects or pages that you want people to see.
When you had myspace, the chances are you had a cool black or dark coloured background, and some white swirly writing. Well, that is actually really hard on the eyes. It’s better if you have a white or pale background and a very dark grey – almost black font. Of course, you are free to play around with colour if you really want to. Logos, headers, widget boxes all make for interesting things to look at.
But to make your content the star of the show, keep your text easy to read.
While you might not waiting for your site to load, a reader or customer might get a bit irritated. Slow load speed is one of the main reasons people leave a site before interacting. Ideally, you want your website to load in 3 or fewer seconds. 4 to 6 is pushing it, but still acceptable for most users. Bear in mind the load speed will affect your rankings too.
Keep is clean, always test new features, and run updates as often as required – and remember – the user experience is key.