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Archive for May, 2008

Simple Steps to Improve Your Website Usability

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

Simple Steps to Improve Your Website UsabilityNo one can argue that website usability is a must have these days. Make your website as simple as possible and users will love it. Make the purchase process as short as possible and your sales will boost. How? Here are a few very simple steps you should take.

  1. Checkout
  2. This is the place where the most number of sales are lost. You can use analytics to check how many users are leaving the website before making a purchase. If you find there are many people leaving before completing this process, you have a problem. The best way is to ask someone (unfamiliar with your web-store) to go through the whole buying procedure and give you feedback.

    The list of things to check out include:

    • Cart accessibility
    • Ease of use
    • Helpful instructions
    • Payment terms
  3. Site Navigation
  4. Is moving around your site intuitive? Is it easy or does it take a lot of effort? Do you have an internal search feature on your site, and does it work properly? If such usability mistakes are made, people can often feel lost and irritated; encouraging them to leave your site and shop somewhere else.

    Conduct an experiment. Ask a few people who have not visited your website before to locate some items. Then ask them how easy it was to find what they were looking for. Use the results of the experiment to discover any usability problems.

  5. Organization
  6. It’s not infrequent when the only person who can understand the way the website is organized, is its creator, rather than users.

    When you check your site, make sure that it presents concise and understandable information. Sometimes webmasters use jargon and industry argot words, not realising such words are not familiar to potential customers. You should also provide an easy method to add an item to the cart. Make sure users can seamlessly navigate categories to find what they are looking for. When making improvements, solve the worst problems first and concentrate on the items with the best profit potential.

  7. Security Items
  8. Quite often people are understandably wary about providing their credit card information online. That’s why security icons should be prominently displayed, and Privacy Policy should be summarized in an appropriate place of the site. Show people that your site is secure.

  9. User Friendliness
  10. It’s well known that many customers leave sites when asked to fill in a form page. Do not ask too much information from your users. Make the surveys as small as possible and omit sections people think are intrusive. Ask your customers for feedback, and make sure your forms are not too time consuming.

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