When it comes to the Internet, the customer is truly king. What do you think will happen if a customer finds navigating your website challenging or uninteresting? It’s simple. They will click away and likely move on to your competitor’s website. Corporations large and small spend extensive time and money on improving the user experience in order to prevent that from happening.
Why Is User Experience Important for Conversion?
Here are a couple of examples taken from Cost-Justifying Usability: An Update for an Internet Age.
• Your sales can rise by up to 225 percent when you improve user experience and provide adequate product information at the right moment.
• Most software projects (63 percent) at large corporations run over the budget primarily because they overspend on user engineering.
Now that we see the value of improving user experience, let’s review 16 simple ways you can improve your user experience that are well worth the investment.
Go Mobile Friendly
In 2014, the number of global users accessing the Internet from mobile devices crossed desktop users for the first time. Catering to visitors using cell phones, tablets, wearable technology, and other mobile devices is essential.
Take, for instance, the efforts of Baines & Ernst. On observing that mobile use was on the rise, the organization made their web design responsive to mobile devices. The result was an impressive 51 percent increase in conversion rate.
Choose Colors Deliberately
Colors are an important part in the visual appeal of your website and your overall user experience. Certain color combinations will draw in certain visitors. A survey by Kissmetrics revealed that blue was the favorite color among women, whereas the color orange was voted as their least favorite. This gives a deep insight into combining data analytics of your website visitors with color choices. Do your research, perform user tests, and user your findings to optimize conversions on your site. According to NeuroMarketing, “If a good color sells, the right color sells better.”
Add Definitive Calls-to-Action
Simply stating facts about your business and urging potential customers to make a purchase is a bad strategy. Instead, use a guiding hand to help visitors form a buying decision by highlighting a prominent call-to-action button. Making a notable call-to-action increases conversions significantly.
Take Advantage of Multivariate Testing
Arriving at the most effective combination of landing page elements is always tough. Luckily, multivariate testing comes to the rescue in these choices. Here’s a great example from MarketingSherpa:
The Weather Channel decided to use multivariate testing to design a landing page for converting traffic coming in for free services. They tested several combinations of page elements. Finally, they zeroed down on a landing page through multivariate testing and brought in 225 percent more trial subscriptions.
Choose Images Wisely
Humans are visual creatures, so images can make a huge difference in user experience. Adding industry-relevant images allows you to bring in an element of personalization and shape how visitors interact with your website. This is precisely what 37Signals did. They conducted an A/B testing between a white background and a background of one of their customers. This attempt at personalization through images yielded an increase in sign ups by 102.5 percent.
Offer Something in Exchange for Actions
Offering something enhances the user experience and gives a nudge for taking the purchasing actions you desire. Sims 3, the gaming website, was on a quest to increase its registrations. They tweaked their text from “sign up now” to “Register Your Game and Get a Free Town Now!” and increased their registrations by 128 percent.
Include Product Reviews
Reviews help customers make quicker decisions. Customers want to have peace of mind that they’re investing in a solid product. Adding in this gesture in favor of visitors to your website never goes unrewarded. In an experiment conducted by FigLeaves, including product reviews to their website increased conversions by a healthy 35 percent.
Highlight Your Customer Testimonials
Testimonials act as assurance that doing business with a certain ecommerce website will be safe and positive. It’s basic human psychology to veer towards a brand that’s already trusted by others. This point was proven by WikiJob. Their website had several testimonials, but they were indiscrete and at the bottom of the home page. When the testimonials were made more apparent on top, conversions went up by 34 percent.
Allow Seamless Navigation
This is a basic tip that doesn’t require much explanation. Unless your website is easy to navigate, people will not engage. This was proven beyond doubt by Zen Windows, which initially had a conversion rate of 0.75 percent. The original design was a pain to navigate. When the company redesigned the website and kept navigation in mind, the conversion jumped to 2.95 percent.
Give Security Assurance
User experience is naturally stress-free when your online customers realize that their credit cards or other payment details are safe. A security seal can make a huge difference in this respect. Oriental Furniture saw a 7.6 percent boost in conversion after it started displaying its security seal. Clicking on the seal revealed that they were protected for up to $10,000 in case there was data theft. Customers no longer had a fear of purchasing.
Introduce Proactive Chats
Using proactive chats gives visitors a feeling that they’re dealing with a real person. This gives you the opportunity to remove any doubts, and offer instant solutions to any problems your customers have. Proactive chats can make the user experience more positive. When Intuit introduced a proactive chat in its checkout process, the conversions increased to 211 percent for precisely this reason.
Display Prices Clearly
Price display helps improve customer decision-making and brings in a sense of fair play. Obviously, a customer is more likely to make a purchase when they immediately know the amount of money they are about to spend. This very fact was tested by SafeSoft. They offered one page without pricing and another that clearly mentioned the price. The result was a doubling of lead generation after this simple change.
Have Proof of Authenticity
People are sometimes wary of dealing with eCommerce websites because they’re skeptical about the authenticity of products being sold. UK-based Express Watches tried A/B testing for Seiko Watches. While A was focused on pricing and discounts, B was focused on authenticity. B actually displayed the “certified partner” badge from Seiko. This proof of authenicity caused a 107 percent jump in sales.
Minimize Data Collection
Collection of certain personal information is usually necessary, but websites must ensure they only collect the required minimum. Refrain from making registration a blatant data collection process. Following this principle actually brought in $12 million of increased revenue for Expedia. All the website did was eliminate the field “company name” from the registration form.
Redesign Your Website
Now, I’m not recommending that you redesign your whole site every time you want an increase in conversions. However, you should know what and when to redesign. CloudSponge is a software company that provides automation services for address book sharing. They saw a whopping 33 percent increase in conversions when opting for a more modern design that urged customers to act.
Improving your site’s user experience doesn’t have to cost a fortune. All of the above strategies are rather inexpensive, yet highly effective in boosting your conversions. In the end, it’s a high conversion rate that every business wants. Providing customers a great experience while interacting with you online will go a long way in generating better sales.
This blog post from Shane Barker, a digital marketing consultant, named the #1 social media consultant in the nation by PROskore Power Rankings. He has expertise in business development, online marketing and is an SEO specialist who has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and a number of A-list celebrities.