While surfing the internet, visitors quickly make the decision to stay or leave a website within seconds. In fact, the “Website Blink Test” reveals one makes up their mind within 3-5 seconds of landing on a website, whether or not the webpage is interesting enough to stick around. Alarmingly enough, the reality is that as a business you need to make an immediate impression before your visitors become bored, and move on to the next listing Google provides…also known as your potential competitor! So what can you do to draw them in to stay awhile?
1) Feature Important Details at the Top
Visitors want to find exactly what they’re after without having to scroll down or click around through various tabs. Essentially, anything important should be highlighted at the top of your page. This includes details pertaining to your company services or products, as well as contact information. If you can nail this key aspect down, chances are you’ve grabbed the visitor’s attention and they’ll genuinely want to learn more, staying to surf your website. Perfect! However, most people have short attention spans and may get frustrated should the answers to their questions NOT be instantly visible. Follow this simple rule and you’re sure to beat out any temptation for your visitor to leave.
2) Use Friendly Content
Nobody wants to filter through a novel to get the facts. Keep your content simple and organized for more pleasurable readability. Most people are in a hurry and don’t have expendable time reading multiple pages of material that doesn’t provide much value. In order to keep your visitor’s attention, say what needs to be said in as little space as possible; keeping in mind what’s considered core content versus “fluff”. Rid of anything that isn’t necessary and optimize important information so that it’s easy to scan through. This also includes writing in a tone and language that is relatable to your target audience. I.e.) implementing words like “You” and “You’re” rather than “We and Us”. Write copy that’s easy to comprehend… people don’t like what they don’t understand.
3) Keep it Visually Appealing
Your website should reflect your company’s branding, and the overall message you are portraying. Keep a consistent color theme throughout each page; this makes for a clean appearance, and assists with brand recognition. Remember to avoid bright fonts that are difficult to read; this can turn visitors away from your website quickly. Incorporate high quality images that are relevant to your business’s representation. In the same sense, use images appropriately without “overloading” your website for the sake of graphic appeal. You don’t want to wind up confusing your visitors with a picture that doesn’t speak to your services. This is extremely important; even the most captivating picture is worthless if it doesn’t clearly tie in with your branding.
4) Provide Easy Navigation
Nothing’s worse than landing on a website, and having no idea where to find basic company information, such as hours, location, or contact details. User-friendly navigation will contribute to your information getting seen, and benefits the user greatly, allowing them to get the information they need with the click of a button. Develop headings that are concise, but clearly indicate the topic direction. Categories of upmost importance should stand out at the top of the Home Page, and links throughout your website should be easily accessible. Categorize any subjects that require it, but don’t overdo it with excessive sub-headings. This can cause confusion and overwhelm a visitor. When determining your top headings, think of what you would want to see as a visitor; this should give you a good idea of categories to feature, and which not to.
5) Make Responsive for Mobile and Tablet
Now more than ever, people are surfing websites directly from their mobile phone or other portable device. In fact, studies reveal 45% of American adults own a Smartphone, and 25% have a tablet. Pew Research Center As a result, it’s in your best interest to create your website for desktop compatibility as well as a responsive version. Making your website fully functional on a mobile device is crucial. This involves manipulating the content and graphics of your site, so everything is fitted to size. All images should be converted to files recognized by a mobile device, and content should be scaled appropriately, so material is readable and important details aren’t cut off. Don’t miss out on conversions; your mobile site should pass the blink test as well!