- On March 22, 2016
- Content Marketing, Design, Digital Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Media Production, Storytelling, User Experience, User Testing, UX, Video, Video Production, Videography, Web Design, Web Development
The Webby Awards, dubbed “the internet’s highest honour” by the New York Times, recognize international leaders that produce excellence online. One category acknowledged by the Webby Awards is “Best User Experience,” which gives a nod to websites that offer a blend of innovative design and useful functionality that culminate in the best user experience websites. Since being established in 1996, winners have included Virgin America, Kickstarter, Medium, Google Play, and many others.
But chances are, like many professionals, you haven’t heard of the Webby Awards, and you might know fairly little about user experience as it is often overlooked. But user experience has important implications, and it has helped lead companies, like Amazon and Shopify, to great success. Moreover, user experience is a driving force in determining a website’s visibility on search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing. In fact, one of Google’s core principles is “Focus on the user and all else will follow.”
Want to improve the user experience offered by your website and or application? Follow the five tips below, and you will be well on your way to delivering intuitive, simple and beautiful design that will delight users each time they visit.
1. Use White Space, Bullets And Images
First, white space. Owners of websites are always eager to fill blank space with more web copy, ads, etc. Overcome the temptation. It provides visual “breathing room” for your user’s eyes, and it’s of utmost importance that you preserve it. Bullets help to break up copy, making it easier to read and navigate the page. And photography and videos are vital in establishing trust and your company’s brand image. Just remember to avoid cheesy stock photography at all costs.
2. Set Users On The Right Path
Your users don’t want to have to think; it’s your job to organize content in such a way that they are led down a predetermined path, but to do so you need to have a clear plan. People like choice, but studies have proven that too many choices result in paralysis and unhappiness on the part of the user (see the Paradox of Choice).
3. Focus On Usability Over “Impressiveness”
Design is important, but don’t forget to make things intuitive and easy to understand. Here is where usability and validation testing can be incredibly valuable. Not in your budget? Try a website like usertesting.com, or better yet, consult with an agency that is well-versed in user experience and design.
4. Monitoring And Testing
It’s impossible to continually improve the user experience of your website and/or applications without monitoring and testing. From usability testing, to analytics and good old-fashioned surveying and asking for feedback, you need to be constantly monitoring your progress and experimenting with new ways to capture the attention and good favour of visitors to your website.
5. Offer Value
More than anything, if you want to offer a positive user experience, you need to offer something of value to visitors to your website. Fulfill a need, consistently deliver valuable content and focus on cultivating human relationships over drowning your audience with sales-speak.