So, should you care?
I’m going to use an example we all have to experience here in South Africa when renewing our driver’s licenses (something we have to do every 5 years). It’s a perfect example of what bad UX is. The Licensing Department’s online booking system is a nightmare (you can read about one journalist’s experience here). When people are unable to do the one thing that the system is designed to do – that results in a VERY bad UX. Something you should not be subjecting your users to.
If you confuse or frustrate your users – you’ll lose them.
So, how does this relate to you and your website? Although you may not be providing a UX anywhere near as awful as the licensing department’s, something as simple as not adding a button where users are expecting to see one – may be losing you customers. You need to make sure that something as simple as a misplaced button isn’t frustrating your users and I have a couple of tips for you that should help.
Here are some simple rules that help to enhance any site’s UX:
1. Create easy to understand navigation
The simpler the better. For eg. don’t use “Give us a shout out” for your Contact Page link, call it Contact us. And don’t use symbols or icons for things that may need explaining.
2. A clean layout with neatly laid out content and design elements
3. Proper use of video/animation
When it comes to video/animation, it should always have a clear and logical purpose – and no, advertising your product is not a clear, logical purpose. Video can be heavy, and internet speeds are not always optimal, so this is where you need to ask “do we need a video, or are we just trying to look cool?” Trying to look cool never works.
4. Avoid “click here” links
5. Improve page load speed
We live in a fast-paced world and expect a website to load within three to four seconds. If your website is slow to load, people will be bouncing left, right and centre. A fast-loading ugly site will always have a lower bounce rate than a glamorous, slow-loading one.
These are just a few UX principles of web design to get you thinking about the UX on your website. If you aren’t sure what to improve on your site – ask your site users what they think. Actual user experience feedback is the most important feedback you’ll get.