Usability is a critical factor when designing and building a website, it’s what ensures the environment is one your users enjoy being in. People are far more likely to spend time on a website whose navigation and readability doesn’t confuse them. Below are five factors we think are important when trying to improve usability.
Terminology – in general the terminology you use in your content is very important, but here we are talking specifically about the terminology used for buttons and links. You should aim to make your button less generic and more tailored to the contents they are used to access. The advantage of this is that your users instantly know how to get where they need, and it avoids creating user disappointment form clicking on a button/a link that doesn’t go where they expected.
Colour – buttons and text can become very hard to find and read depending on the colours used. It’s a good idea to keep things simple colour wise, don’t try incorporating too many in your main colour scheme. There should be a level of contrast between a background and the colour of any text to ensure the text is clear and easy to read.
Make links accessible – all links on your site should be easy to find and self-explanatory. This is because any obstacles that sit between the user and your content will result in a bad user experience, which in turn will mean people leave your website without making an enquiry/a purchase.
Simplify forms – don’t make the contact forms on your website over complicated, small things like using labels outside of the form fields (rather than in them) will help increase your conversion rate because you’ll lose less customers due to frustration with the form.
Keep it simple – don’t overstimulate your users, keep everything clean and easy to read. Having too much on any one page will make it hard for users to find the information they need and might mean that they miss something you really wanted to draw their attention to. Users won’t digest huge chunks of information all at once so try and break everything down. It is a common misconception that anything important should be ‘above the fold’ but if your content is worth scrolling for, users will scroll.
If you only take one thing away from this, keep it simple when it comes to website design. Always bear in mind your user experience, after all, they are who you’re creating the site for.