Improving User Experience is vital in building satisfaction and trust with your audience. It is one thing to catch one’s eye with great visual design, but it is another thing to keep them there by delivering content in a meaningful, practical and efficient manner.
Here are 10 tips to improve user experience.
1. Create a Clickable Logo
One of the quickest and easiest ways to improve UX is to have your logo link back to the Home page. The downside to not having a clickable logo can be potentially severe, as it serves as a poor first impression.
2. Easy To Use Navigation
Making your navigation easy to use will pay off because it will deliver content to the user faster and leave them with a positive experience. Highlight what page they are currently on, and style links properly. A strong visual design indicates what are clickable objects and help lead the user to their destination.
3. Make It Easy to Find Content
Having a search bar is critical if your system has an abundance of information. The longer it takes for the user to find what they are looking for, the more likely that they will leave unhappy. A search bar will give the user a clear path to find what they are looking for.
4. Divide Information into Smaller Sections
Make good use of white space, headings and visual clues to highlight important areas. Break up large chunks of information and separate them. Visual clarity reduces confusion, while having too much information at a time can overwhelm the user. Clicking through to the next page is less demanding than reading lots of information on a single page.
5. Consider Primary and Secondary Actions
Prioritize primary actions and ensure that it delivers as efficiently as possible. For example, a checkout button is a primary function, and as such should be quick and intuitive.
If it takes too long to load, it may upset or confuse the user. A reset forms button is secondary and may be counter-intuitive or dangerous if accidentally clicked. Gartner analysts say that “No single approach will ensure adoption. Productive adoption requires coordinating a range of approaches, depending on the functions being offered; the needs and desires of the audiences they’re offered to; and interplay between the range of functions and approaches”.
6. Strong Visual Feedback
Include contextual feedback to help simplify the process to the user. Hover boxes, tooltips and highlighted warnings are all simple ways to improve visual feedback. For example, a form that indicates password strength and/or if your caps lock is turned on without having to press the Submit button first.
7. Faster Loading Time
According to Sean Work at KISSmetrics, more than 40% of people say that they will abandon a site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. It doesn’t matter how great your site looks if it fails to load within a reasonable amount of time.
You can resize, convert or remove large images, replace large Flash files, cache your site so it takes less time to load for subsequent visits, or optimize the layout of the page.
8. Optimize Your Website for Mobile Users
Consider the demographics that you are serving. If your primary users are on mobile devices, then optimization will be extremely important. Sean Work states that over 50% of mobile users expect load times to have slower load times than their desktop. Include a mobile version of your site with proper dynamic spacing, disable auto play Flash content, and use smaller images or thumbnails.
9. Think Like A User
Put yourself in the user’s shoes and navigate through your site. It can often give you a new perspective on how to improve your design. Go through common tasks and record how quickly it takes to achieve them. If it takes too long or requires too many steps, consider ways to fix it. According to Gartner “Organizations must use incentives to attract and engage portal users. Incentives can be positive or negative, ongoing or one-off, and intrinsic or extrinsic. The most productive and sustainable portal adoption is gained through positive, ongoing, intrinsic incentives — that is, when using the portal becomes a reward unto itself”.
10. Offer Online Guidance
Sometimes UX can be a finicky thing to get right, and may be a roadblock to delivering your otherwise fantastic content. Platforms like WalkMe help provide the tools to bridge the gap between your system and users by providing contextual online guidance.
User Experience is not a static idea. It is dynamic, as the way people consume information changes. Always seek to improve and adapt with your audience.