Websites – UX Design

Needle on a dial showing different stages of user experience stages from Awful through to excellent. The needle is pointing to Excellent

Why good User Experience is so important

Needle on a dial showing different stages of user experience stages from Awful through to excellent. The needle is pointing to Excellent

Whether you want to sell a product, or share business or personal blogs, you need to remember one important factor. You’re not building a website for yourself, you’re building it for your website’s visitors. Your customers need to be happy with the design, content, navigation and the website usability. This is where User Experience (UX) comes into play, and why you need to think about UX design when you’re creating your site.

Define ‘user experience’

The overall experience of a person using a product such as a website or computer application, especially in terms of how easy or pleasing it is to use: if a website degrades the user experience too much, people will simply stay away

Oxford English Dictionary

User Experience design should not be confused with website design. To put it in layman’s terms, UX is how interacting with your website makes a user feel. If they can find what they want quickly and easily, and there are no glitches in the buying process, then you will have given them a good experience. They will like your site, tell others about it and they’ll come back again.

On the other hand if they have a bad experience – product descriptions are incomplete, images don’t load, or they can’t find what they want – then you could be in trouble! Best case is they just won’t use your website again. Worst case is they will leave a bad review and tell their friends how bad the experience was too.

UX can apply to any technology, from a mobile phone to a Smart TV, or games console. So when it comes to websites, a site built with solid UX principles should leave your visitors feeling like they have achieved what they came to do without any disappointment.

Remember : a happy customer is a returning customer

Basics of good UX design

When you create your own website it’s your responsibility to ensure that users get what they want from it. To help you guarantee they have a good user experience, here are 3 key elements to focus on.

1. Navigation

Poor navigation can render any website useless. Users should be able to move through your site smoothly and intuitive. The navigation menu should be clearly labelled and easy to use, no matter what device someone is using. Stick with short, common menu naming standards where ever possible.

People expect to see Menus situated in the site’s Header and Footer sections. If your site has a lot of pages, then adding Breadcrumb navigation is a good way to stop users getting lost.

2. Scannable content

Most people don’t read every single word on a web page in the same way as they would read a book. They scan it, and will stop to read more if they’ve found something that’s interesting. Content is scannable when the reader can quickly browse a blog or products page, and come away with a clear idea of what’s being talked about.

Keeping paragraphs short is one way to create user-friendly, scannable content. Paragraphs should be broken up frequently with headings, lists and images. You can also use quotes, bold text, or similar formatting to highlight keywords and draw the eye to something important.

3. Mobile-friendly

Ensuring your website is mobile-friendly is essential if it’s to look and function well on mobile devices.

As of January 2021 there were 4.66 billion active internet users worldwide – 59.5 percent of the global population. Of this total, 92.6 percent (4.32 billion) accessed the internet via mobile devices.

If you come across a site that you struggle to use on your mobile phone, what do you do? More often than not you’ll abandon it and go elsewhere. So to ensure your users don’t do the same, and bounce over to your competitor’s site, you need a responsive website design.

There are free tools that you can use to check that your site works well on all screen sizes. Test it yourself on Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool. This tool will highlight issues that are keeping your site from being mobile-friendly. Sometimes it can be that a font is too difficult to read on smaller screens. Or that buttons are too close together to use easily. Simple and quick fixes that you can do yourself.

Know your target audience

You can use UX design to create a site your audience will love. But first of all, understand why you have a website and what you want it to do. Is it to:

Secondly, get to know your potential customer. Creating a user persona will help you think about how your target audience might use your website. What are they looking for? How can you help them achieve their goal, or solve a problem?

Finally, you don’t need to be a professional UX designer to build a website your audience will love. You just need to understand what will make life easier for your visitors. And be willing to build a site that delivers a good user experience.

Copyright : and the author : Shirley Atkinson Rencontrez l'équipe Meet the team - Shirley Atkinson Website Consultant, Content writer Usability review