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Usability Best Practices: How to Make Your Web Site Easy to Use and Intuitive for an End-User

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Usability Best Practices - milestoneinternet.com, Milestone Inc.

How to Improve Digital Experiences and Web Usability | User-Friendly Website |

User Experiences

Website usability is the act of ensuring a website is highly interactive, engaging, clean and easily used by all potential customers. The aim is to suitably develop a website that offers intuitive usage by the end-user by implementing best practices to suit the target market, current trends, and the goal of your business.

Two-thirds of the online population would rather read something aesthetically pleasing and clean on a website than otherwise, with 38% of people saying they’d stop engaging with a website that doesn’t prioritize how to improve digital experiences and web usability, altogether.

Of course, legibility goes a long way in determining a user-friendy website; font size, color, line spacing, organization of text, and images all help in converting lookers into bookers. However, they aren’t the only feature of focus when understanding how to improve digital experiences and web usability.

So, the team here at Milestone wanted to share some key statistics that help in the creation of a user-friendly website before moving onto providing you with the top four tips for generating positive user experiences (UXs).

1. Statistics you should know when creating an intuitive user-friendly website

Understanding the statistics and trends of websites in 2021 will ultimately explain how to improve digital experiences and web usability for customers on your brand’s site. It is important to note that context plays a key part in these statistics. Such as: demographic, global region, wealth, global economy, state of living, preference trends, user generated content increases, etc.

Here are the key statistics on user-friendly websites in 2021:

2. Optimize your website for mobile user experiences above all else

Given the statistics, it’s clear to see the importance that cell phones and mobile devices have on a 2021 consumer base. This comes as no surprise as October 2020 saw the market share for mobile users rise to 55.73% worldwide in comparison to desktop internet surfing coming in at 41.46% and tablets with a 2.81% market share.

In order to optimize your website to become mobile user-friendly, you’ll need to ensure actionable contents are where the thumb can reach; after all, most mobile user experiences are one-handed for convenience and accessibility on-the-go.

As well as this, optimizing for mobile devices means rethinking design and heading for blocks made with minimalism in mind; Your website will need to be transferrable between desktop and mobile, meaning large blocks of text can deter mobile readers and any images that don’t crop to mobile proportions will not be appreciated in their full capacity.

Before publishing, you should ensure you have a mobile user-friendly website by bypassing the URL through Google’s Mobile-Friendly Tool. The software lets you know which features of your site need to be optimized and how to improve digital experiences and web usability for mobile devices.

3. Adhere to the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) Guidelines

Also known in the industry as the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) , they are a global round-up of all the necessary standards that are to be met by websites in order to allow your site to appear in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for a worldwide audience.

Their guidelines state, in order to be a user-friendly website, your business’ online site should feature the non-conclusive list of:

  • Non-text content accompanied an alternative-text solution to serve the same purpose. This can be embedded into website features through ‘alt-text’.
  • Feature colors that insight visual attractiveness, accessibility for the color-blind population, and prompt action.
  • Providing easy-to-read text with a low-grade readability score or connecting an audio translation.
  • Present consistency and repeatability of the brand and content across the webpage to remain relative to the user.
  • ‘Pointer Gestures’ are used to enable simple navigation across the website rather than needing path-based gestures.

It should be part of the process to read these guidelines and ensure your website is accessible for all internet users from the color-blind and blind to the young or the deaf. Especially with the knowledge that these guidelines are subject to change upon the emergence of new research in the fields of disability.

Following such tips of how to improve digital experiences and web usability will allow for a user-friendly website experience to be had by the surplus of 1 billion disabled people in the world.

4. Keep relevant data front-of-page

Using the statistics, we know it’s important to have a home landing page that incorporates all the main informational features such as directions, about the brand, products and services on offer, and contact information.

Similarly, it is vital these elements are strategically placed on the screen. The below chart shows the statistics and correlative figures between the duration spent looking at a webpage versus the content placement.

As we can see, it’s key to place key elements in the location where the eyes focus the most. Studies show that human eyes move from left to right and – as such – suggest the most important elements and call-to-actions (CTAs) should be placed on the left-hand side of the page to manufacture a user-friendly website.

As well as this, it must be noted, having an excess of banners, coupons, and offers on a website can lead to ‘banner blindness’. This means too many features are present on the screen and the important elements or CTAs are simply lost in the mayhem which will cause a high bounce rate atop negative user experiences.

The user heat-map below demonstrates a website whose mass of banners have caused visitors to overlook specials and packages the website offers, themselves. To avoid ‘banner blindness’, you should: stray from using an interface with an ‘advertising look’, test the effectiveness while completing user experience polls, or choose a separate and clean format such as a single pop-up.

To find out more about how to improve digital experiences and web usability to become a top converting website in 2021, read our article “6 Secrets to Top Converting Websites in 2021”.

5. Find and remove broken links that can reduce your site’s crawl time

A true technique for how to improve digital experiences and web usability for positive user experiences is to crawl your website.

Using URL crawlers such as Screaming Frog or Milestone Schema Manager, you can identify ‘broken links’ that can be optimized or removed from the website in order to improve crawl speed and loading time of your website (thus creating a user-friendly website).

In fact, Google suggests 31% of website visitors will class a loading time of 3 seconds to be a bad user experience and will ‘bounce’ away from your brand before completing a CTA.

Not only can broken (or dead) links ruin search engine optimization (SEO) efforts, but they’ll also cause your website visitors to run into 404 errors with other negative user experiences. However, after identification, they can either be optimized with content, redirected, or removed altogether.

Using the latest consumer trend statistics with these four simple steps for how to improve digital experiences and web usability for positive user experiences will ensure you are making a more user-friendly website. Following this, it’s likely to see increased convergence and return rates of visitors.

For a seamless approach to website maintenance and growth toward a user-friendly website, get in contact with the team here at Milestone. Our expertise lies within optimizing your website and defining a clean market funnel that won’t lose visitors in the journey.

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