User Experience (UX) is an important element of website design. Typically problems with user experience occur due to the accumulation of small issues. Whether it’s a slider resizing issue in a mobile device, a call to action button placement issue, or a slow loading time of the website, poor UX design can adversely affect the conversion rates of your website. It can also result in a high bounce rate, which will lower your ranking in organic searches.
Here are a few common UX mistakes and how they should be avoided.
1. Asking too much information
Website visitors are very lazy. Your forms should be easy to understand. If your website has too many form fields, your users might abandon the form midway. It is very important to ask relevant information and only keep those fields that are really required. You can always ask for more information over email or phone.
If asking for a lot of information is absolutely necessary, then consider using a progress bar or breaking the process into easy steps. Various studies have shown that simple signup forms considerably increase conversion rates.
2. Too much plain text
Research evidence suggests that users engage much more with visual cues. If you have too much text on the web page no one is going to read its entire sentences and paragraphs. Visitors have a short attention span. Therefore, when designing a website keep in mind not to put too much text and add attractive visuals, audio or video to make it interesting and hold your visitor’s attention.
You need to clearly define your goals: what should you expect users to do after landing on a website? Goals could be to sign up forms, an email subscription, fill a contact form etc. Based on your goal you should craft a page which motivates them to take action.
3. Slow page loading time
Slow page loading time could be a big turn off to website visitors. If your site is loading slowly there is a high chance that your visitor will leave it very quickly. Ideally, page load time should be less than 5 seconds. If your page takes longer than 5 seconds then you can minimize the images/video size, leverage browser caching, remove query strings from static resources or minimize request size, among other solutions.
4. Clear goals
When a user lands on your website he should be able to find what he’s looking for within seconds. Clear communication will help you achieve greater conversion rates and more time spent on page. A header with a clear message explaining the product or services you offer, and an image or a short video with a call to action button is all you need on the landing page.
Here’s a good piece of UX on the Houzz website: a simple and clear explanation of what the company does.
5. Not doing continuous improvement
Designing a web page for user experience is not a onetime process. You need to continually update and improve the experience and design as you gather user data and feedback. Collect, analyze and act on the qualitative data that you gather from your site visitor.
There are tools like Hotjar that help you with recording, heatmaps, form analysis, feedback pools etc. You can identify the usability issue by watching a recording of real visitors on you site as they click, tap, or move their cursor with recording, and understand what they want with feedback polls.
Remember that even the slightest detail like background color, button size/text, etc can have a huge impact on UX.
6. Unclear Call to Action (CTA)
Call to Action is a really important element of UX design. You need to ultimately capture the details from the users (their name, email, phone number etc) or guide them towards your goals through this button. It must be in a logical placement – this can improve conversion rate up to 30%, have a contrasting color and effective words. Call to Action buttons can serve a variety of functions: sign up forms, add a product to a shopping cart, download something, request information etc.
Marshall Headphones page is an example of nice product imagery with clear Call to Action buttons.
7. Lack of real value for the users
You need to ask yourself: what is the value that users are getting after visiting a web page? For example, a carousel slider by default on the home page doesn’t offer any value to your customers – it will only provide value if it helps understand your product or service. Too many slides could have a negative effect on user experience too. While designing a web page you need to keep in mind the value that users will get visiting it.
8. Mistaking UI for UX
While UI is all about how the user interacts with the website interface, UX is concerned with how the website design makes the user feel. UI is concerned with placing the elements, the color of the elements, the shades of the background etc. All of these at the end are part of the overall user experience. In short, the ultimate goal of UI design is to create a visually appealing interface that helps create an overall good user experience.
UX requires fine tuning many different aspects of visual design, interaction design, usability, content etc. Just because you have a visually appealing interface it will not guarantee a good UX of the site.
9. High Bounce Rate
The bounce rate of a website shows if the visitor is exploring the other website pages after landing on a specific page. If a bounce rate of the website is 60% means 60% of the visitor is leaving the website without navigating to other pages of the website. It has more to do with UX. You need to design a good user experience in such a way that users want to learn more about your company and product.
Try to design a page that is more intuitive and engaging for your visitors. It is not easy to keep the interest of the user intact on the site, but you can use a trial and error method to see what works better for you. You can also do A/B testing on the website to see how users are behaving to web pages. A/B test can validate or reject the improvement that you plan to do on the website.
While designing and testing to improve the UX you need to think like a visitor and let your users get an excellent browsing experience.
I hope you will be inspired to improve the UX on your website and see how things shape up. Let me know if you have any questions in the comments section below.
Author Bio: Gaurav Kanabar is the Director of Alphanso Tech, a globally acknowledge IT consulting company providing services in the arena of WordPress Development Services & iPhone App Development. With immense support from the adroit team, Alphanso Tech has been serving a huge client base worldwide.
Featured image: Background vector designed by Freepik.