Making sure your website is easy to use should be a major priority for your business.
A website is a relatively inexpensive 24/7 selling machine that can make or break a sale.
Below are the items that we look for in a user-friendly website. You can use these questions to evaluate your own website.
Does the site look good?
What kind of a first impression does it make?
We know this is subjective as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, however, most people can agree that a cluttered, mismatched website with clashing colors can be offensive to look at and may turn people off.
Is the navigation easy to understand and use?
Are the page names labeled in a manner that I can easily find what I am looking for?
Quite often, we see designers create clever navigation that looks great, but is a usability nightmare. It works in one browser but not in another and isn’t consistent from page to page.
Clearly labeled navigation with obvious links make moving from page to page easier for the user.
Is the logo a link back to the homepage?
This is often overlooked but is a very easy addition to your site and creates a single click back to the homepage from anywhere on your site.
Is the company’s contact information easy to find?
Ideally, the contact information should be on each page above the fold (meaning I don’t have to scroll to find the contact information).
Do I know what to do next?
When creating a website, you should always start by defining what your goals are for your website.
Ask yourself what it would take for you to think of your website as a success.
Is it more sales? More phone calls? Less support calls?
Whatever that goal is, create a call to action (or multiple calls to action) around that goal(s).
If you want more sales, try putting educational material on your site and telling people where to look to find them.
Make your call to action obvious so the user knows what to do once they are on your website.
Is there a way to search?
If a user can’t find what they are looking for, they will often do a keyword search within the site.
Adding a search box to your website will allow the users to drill down to the page they are looking for more quickly.
Is it mobile optimized?
With over 40% of the traffic coming to your site from a mobile device, it is criminal not to have a mobile solution for your website.
Can I quickly scan the website and find out what my company does?
And by quickly, I mean within 3–5 seconds.
Is it obvious to the user what problem you solve?
Is there an appropriate amount of text?
Again, this one is slightly subjective, however there needs to be enough content on the page to educate the user about your products and services.
Content is also very important for search engine optimization.
Having unique content that answers questions and clarifies your service offering will help potential customers and the search engines find your products.
If you have a lot of content on a page, try breaking it up with bulleted lists or infographics to help explain the text in a more visual manner.
Can I access their social accounts from their website?
Your website is typically filled with marketing support and sales information.
Your facebook page, blog, or twitter feed usually shows a lot of the personality behind a company.
When making a decision on whether or not to do business with you, looking at your website and your social accounts provides a more complete picture of what the company culture is.
Is the website maintained well?
Websites are often neglected and not updated as quickly as they should be.
If your website has old information on it or broken links or images, you are telling the visitor that you don’t place much value on them.
You don’t mind if they are reading an outdated press release or looking at an old address for your company.
Treat updating your website as a main priority if and when products or services change at your company.
Are you impressed or depressed?
If your website doesn’t measure up, where can you start making changes to make it easier for those visiting your site?