Whether you realize it or not, your website’s user experience (UX) has a significant impact on how consumers see your brand. If your website is sloppy, slow, and archaic, that’s how customers will see your business. On the other hand, if your site is fast, sleek, and modern, your brand will be seen as progressive. As we transition from 2015 to 2016, it’s critical that you consider put a lot of consideration into your UX.
UX and Customer Experience
At first, it may seem strange that something as simple and seemingly insignificant as a website could have a very real impact on a customer’s experience with your brand, but it's true: in a marketplace dominated by Internet marketing and ecommerce, your website often imparts a first and lasting impression on consumers.
Whether they realize it or not, your users develop an opinion of your brand within a fraction of a second after visiting your site. This can be extremely advantageous or debilitating – depending on how much attention you’ve given to your website.
3 Ways You Can Improve UX
Some businesses know their websites aren’t well developed, while others are constantly looking to improve. Regardless of which category you fall under, here are some things you need to be paying attention to if you want to simultaneously improve your website and overall customer experience.
1. Consider Page Loading Time
Page loading time is a huge deal for Internet users. If your site is too slow, you’ll frustrate customers and significantly hamper your conversion rate. According to this KISSmetrics infographic, 40 percent of users will abandon a website if it takes more than three seconds to load. Furthermore, 79 percent of online shoppers who say they are dissatisfied with a website’s performance are unlikely to make a repeat purchase.
The same data shows that a one-second delay actually decreases customer satisfaction with your brand, and 44 percent of online shoppers tell their friends about negative online experiences. In other words, even the smallest delay in page loading time can have a negative impact on how customers see your brand.
If you want to enhance on-site UX, focus on speeding up your website. There are a number of strategies for making a site faster, but check out this excellent resource for an in-depth look at the topic.
2. Enhance Site Security
Website security has never been more important than it is today. Cyber attacks are at an all-time high and hackers are specifically targeting small businesses with weak network protection. If you want to protect your users’ information and keep private data private, it’s imperative that you continually reevaluate your processes.
Limit the number of admin accounts that have access to your website and use two-factor authentication whenever possible. Anyone who accesses your website needs to understand and follow specific rules for handling email, visiting websites, and even using social media. If your company has a BYOD policy, be very careful about which devices are allowed to access your network. These may seem like small things, but they all add up to a safer website and happier customers.
3. Declutter the Layout
Finally, an extremely practical tip is to declutter your layout. Effective modern web design is all about saying more with less. Go easy on the text and opt for sleek graphics that exemplify your brand’s identify and speak to customers. Something as superficial as design tweaks can improve a customer’s experience with your brand.
Don’t Underestimate the Value of Website UX
Your website’s user experience has a direct and quantifiable impact on your customers’ overall experience with your brand. While you can do everything possible to strengthen your customer service in terms of better phone line management, quicker response times, faster shipping, and more generous return policies, you can’t forget about your website. Good website UX is invaluable in today’s Internet-based consumer marketplace.