Before I start with this post I want to explain something. I am neither a designer nor a programmer, or in other words I have never designed a website or programmed it, but I always advise my clients so they can have the best results on the web. You might be asking yourself how is this possible if I don’t work in any of the mentioned areas? Because unlike many of them I don’t think that a website is just a tool or that it is just a pretty place where people arrive, I think that a website is a business and is a place where visitors must feel comfy and that they should achieve what they want to do here easily.
What I have just mentioned is known as “usability”, and in order to be successful in Internet as a business, we must learn so much about this word. Many times websites are designed thinking only in technical elements, and as a result we see pages that seem to be created for machines to interact with them. Other times we see pages that are pleasing to our eyes but as in the example I just mentioned, it is difficult to interact with them, and find what we are looking for.
Usability makes it easy for users to interact with the webpage. In other word it is going to be easy to find options, make selections, perform selections and processes such as buying online, chatting, searching, among others.
What I mentioned has important impacts for your business. First, your website must be a place where what you offer is easy to achieve. For example, if you have an ecommerce, but the steps for buying are difficult to perform, you are going to lose sales. Second, Internet is a media that doesn’t offer second chances. Think about the websites you have visited and had a bad experience. Have you return to them? It is very likely you haven’t. This also happens with your website, if the user didn’t have a good experience, he is not coming back.
There are many ways to know if our website has usability. One I recommend is to invite people that have never used it and that are part of our target, to interact with it and watch what happens. Here we will se our mistakes and what do the users don’t understand. Other way we can know if it is usable, is for example to contact people that abandoned the shopping cart in our website and ask them why they did it. It is very likely that some of these users abandoned it because they didn’t understand something about the process.
I hope these advices will help you to have better results in your website.
Image taken from Flickr.com