Improve The Experience of the Visitor Journey
What happens when someone visits your website? Do you have their experience mapped out, or is it always a little different?
Many website owners tend to have a grand vision for what their site looks like, but don’t consider the visitor journey. This is a mistake. The path a visitor follows can, with some forethought, be designed to work in your advantage. A few small, simple adjustments will ensure your visitors stay engaged and have a smooth user experience. This will lead to more sales, longer visitor retention, and a greater likelihood of creating brand enthusiasts (or even brand evangelists).
Why Content and Design Matter
There are two main factors at play on any website. The first is content, the second is design. When considering the user path, both of these are equally important to consider, tweak, and refine.
The content, when written well, keeps your visitor excited, intrigued, and exploring your site. The design presents a quality user experience, making it easy to move around on the site and feel as though it adequately represents the brand.
What is well-written content? It’s content designed with the visitor in mind. It considers their needs, frustrations, and desires. It makes the mission of the website clear and puts the visitor in the spotlight. There are clear calls-to-action (CTAs) throughout, giving the visitor no doubt about where you want them to go. Content should be structured in a skimmable format broken into lists, columns and quick blurbs with proper descriptive headings rather than long drawn out paragraphs. Copywriting is as much part of User Experience as the actual design of the website.
As for quality design, you’re looking at both visual appeal and practical use. A pretty website isn’t much use if the user path is unclear, or if important information is tucked away beneath a bunch of unnecessary bells and whistles. While aesthetics are important, it must be balanced against user experience. Can the visitor find where they need to go quickly? Is the content easy to read? Are the images both appealing and do they make sense in relation to the content? Is the goal of the website easy to identify and user path optimized for conversion?
All of these questions are worth considering.
Pay attention to CTAs and navigation
When looking at content and design, nowhere is it more important to get it right than within the CTAs and the navigation.
On the content end of the spectrum, CTAs are your invitation to the visitor to take the next step down the user path. They are your written method of directing their actions where you want them to go. Keeping it to as few CTAs per page will go a long way towards creating a visitor journey that makes sense and leads them where you want them to go. Too many CTAs may distract or confuse, leaving your visitor with decision fatigue.
On the design side, clear navigation is key. From the navigation bar at the top of the site to the buttons throughout, each piece of the navigation should be intentional. A site map should be drawn up ahead of time to ensure that each of the pages has a place and a purpose, and the path to them is clear.
Tweak, tweak, and tweak again
If you don’t get your visitor journey perfect the first time, don’t worry. Very rarely is a site perfect on the first go. And even if it is, your business is constantly changing. Instead of shooting for perfection, follow the best practices mentioned above and then wait. Give visitors time to visit your site and collect the relevant data. Then, take a look at the visitor journey. Where are visitors falling off the path? Are they all abandoning your site after a certain amount of time? On a certain page? All this data can be collected through analytics, heat mapping, user testing, user interviews and more.
This data will help you adjust the design and content accordingly. And, as your brand and audience evolve, your site is able to evolve with them.
Interested in working with our team to help improve your overall digital strategy? Contact Creative to learn more about our services, and how our team of experts can help improve the time spent on your website.