Do You Have A User Friendly Website?

The look and feel of a website is very important.  You want visitors to like what they see, but usability is equally, if not more, important.  In order for a website to be successful, users need to be able to quickly and seamlessly utilize it.  An easy, well planned experience can set your website apart from your competition. 

Below are some characteristics of a user-friendly website:

Mobile Compatibility

Each day more and more people use their cell phones to access websites.  It is imperative to have a mobile optimized website. 

Check your website to see how it appears on a mobile device.  If your website cannot be accessed, then it is imperative to create a mobile version of your website.  

Well-Formatted Content That Is Easy to Scan

The typical user skims through the content on a website rather than reading each and every word on the page. Users tend to quickly scan through key parts on a site to find out if it is what they are looking for. It is important to format your content with this in mind. Think through your use of headings, sub-headings, paragraphs, bullets and lists help to break up the text, and make it easy for readers to effectively scan.

Fast Load Times

The quickest way to lose an online customer is a site that takes forever to load.  Making sure that you site loads within 4-6 seconds is imperative to provide excellent usability.  This can also affect your search engine ranking. You can use free tools like Pingdom to test the speed of your website and to get suggestions on how to improve your speed.  A typical customer can only wait a few seconds for a page to load until they choose to leave and most likely go directly to a competitor’s site.  

Browser Consistency

It is important to be sure that your website works correctly and the same on all major browsers such as Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera.  

Resourceful Navigation

Navigation is one of the most important parts of a website.  Using JavaScript or a simple HTML works well and will appear consistent in most browsers. Your navigation should not be cluttered.  Do your best to limit the number of menu items.  If you have a large site or lots of information, drop down menus may be a great option.  

Along with the menu be sure that you have a good search feature, various ways to get to the content, descriptive header and footer, good internal linking, and a custom 404 page.  

Effective Color Scheme

You want to be sure that the colors of the background and font on your site have a good contrast so that they are easy to read.  If you have a dark background you want to be sure your font is light so that it is legible and easy to read.  If users literally cannot see your content then they will definitely not be reading it.  

These are just a few suggestions when it comes to creating a user friendly website.  When a customer visits your website you want the experience to be seamless, enjoyable, and interesting.  This will help your online reputation and your business’ success as a whole.  At Branding Plus Marketing Group we understand how important a company’s website is.  Let us assist you in creating a strategy to guarantee excellent online usability and an improved online reputation.  Give us a call at 214-824-4100 and let’s meet today.