Web usability according to research, was proven to be the most significant factor in web design. In fact, it is the influential element that keeps visitors returning to your site.
Usually the most overlooked aspect when designing a website, nonetheless in actuality, usability has power over the web. When your visitors can not easily navigate your site, chances are, he will not utilize your library in search for information and just go to other sites. Note that all sites are just a click of the mouse away. Hundreds of thousands of other online stores that offer the same services or products as you are crowding the internet, making online shoppers more selective and choosy when concluding whether to stay and continue their browsing or just leave.
The internet offers online shoppers ample freedom and various choices; nobody will ever waste their time on a poorly constructed website. In order to provide web usability, you must involve or think of your prospect clients in designing it.
Not like a traditional “brick and mortar” store, a lot of online stores or websites do not permit their visitors to “walk through” inside the site as they can in a traditional store set-up. While this may seem an unworkable task to accomplish, if done correctly, a “user-friendly” approach to web design will easily accomplish this task.
When online shopping, all things must to be located where visitors expect them to be at. The practice of flooding a client with abundant item choices all at the same time and making them search for certain items that they need, is most definitely not the concept of web usability.
Your visitors must be taken into consideration all throughout your planning as well as designing process. Bear in mind that web usability must never be considered after the construction of a website.
Fixing and then testing your website only after construction is useless and will not yield satisfactory results. Your best approach would be to combine a replica of “pervasive usability” unto your website design and construction process.
According to surveys, here are top 12 reasons why visitors want to go back to your site:
• Easy navigation 74%
• Quick download time 65%
• Frequently updated information 58%
• Content quality 57%
• Content quantity 30%
• Content organization 40%
• Prompt customer service 40%
• Website search tools 25%
• Layout of homepage 20%
• Enjoyment 19%
• Website appearance 18%
• Inclusion of animated graphics 9%
Basing from these reasons, here are usability tips to help you design your website:
1. Become familiar with your visitors based on their preferences. You need a website with personality as well as content quality that accommodates your visitor’s taste; you should understand and recognize their color choices, technical skills, etc.
2. Create obvious and simple interface. The more apparent and recognizable the web interface is, then your visitors never have to undergo frustration in guessing how your site really works, and instead on concentrating on the interface, they should be concentrating on your site’s content.
3. Website readability. Create “easy to read” paragraph, not using small text or font size.
4. Quick loading. You need a fast downloadable page as visitors hate to wait.
5. Avoid hidden navigation, as your visitors need to know where and what to click in order to go someplace.
6. Get visitor feedbacks so you will know what is working and what does not. Learn from your prospects.
7. Investigate on website visitor performance. Determine how long it takes to perform a certain task? It should not take too long, the faster the better. If not, work on your user interaction so to improve performance.
8. Provide a help section. If your website visitor does make a certain mistake, then they truly will appreciate it if you provide ways to assist them. “404 page” is great for directing “spiders” to crawl unto your webpage.
Testing for usability
Testing for usability is not complicated and very inexpensive to carry out. The easiest answer is to design a simple sequence of undertakings for web users to carry out trials.
Invite people or friends to your workplace, then request them to navigate your website, watching and observing while they surf. Do not wait when your website is done before you test it; test it now.
The work can be simple like finding out a product’s information or finding out how a certain firm can be contacted or one can order a product and finding shipping policies information.
After testing, fix any problem and test it again. Continue testing and refining web usability of your website until such time that there are no problems found, that the experience is efficient and pleasant.
Remember that website usability is concerned to not just the appearance of a site, but more importantly how your site performs and particularly, it gives emphasis on the experience of your visitors.