A fresh perspective can help you get the most out of your website, especially when approaching the experience from the point of view of your customers. The first of this two-part series examines the importance of readability and performance, and what you need to look for when improving your website.
Your website is your most powerful online presence, and, as such, it’s an effective tool for showcasing who you are and what you do. But it’s also important to remember that your website is not just about You.
Read more about bringing your brand to life through your website here
Sure, brand identity and personality are integral aspects, but it’s easy to become overly precious about these things, or slightly complacent as time goes on, and forget that a successful website is as much about serving your customers as it is a representation of yourself.
Because we now live in a primarily digital world, your website has as much of an impact on your customer service as any physical interaction — arguably more so. With that in mind, you should always be asking yourself: “What will a prospective customer experience when they visit my website?”
Seeing your website through the eyes of a customer, rather than looking at things purely from your own perspective, can help identify areas that could be improved upon and maximise its effectiveness as a marketing tool. With that in mind, let’s take a look at two very important aspects:
Readability — It’s not what you say…
At its most basic premise, your website is a directory for the purpose of serving your customers with important information; who you are; what you do; how you do it — everything a prospective client would want to know about your business. This means using the right words in all the right ways.
Inspiring text on your website can go a long way toward engaging readers and encourage them to buy into your brand. But often we forget about one of the main pillars of successful text — readability. If your content isn’t reader-friendly, there’s no amount of clever wordplay that will get your message across.
Website visitors only read about 20% of the words on a web page before deciding on its usefulness. Clarity and conciseness is key.
It’s fair to say that people don’t read a web page the same way they would a book or newspaper. Most of us tend to scan the copy, jumping from one point of interest to the next, always on the lookout for relevant pieces of information. In fact, a study by the Norman Nielsen Group revealed that, on average, we only read about 20% of the words on a web page before deciding on its usefulness — which is typically determined within about 59 seconds. If they can’t find what they’re looking for in that short amount of time, or can’t discern any semblance or relevance in who you are and what you do, they will most likely search elsewhere.