May 18, 2012
4 Ways to Improve a Web Page
Usability expert Jakob Nielsen tells us that users only stay on a web page for 10-20 seconds, while the bad pages get dropped in only a few seconds.
So how can we use those crucial first 10 seconds to grab a user’s attention? And how can we get the most of out the time a user does spend on our website?
Improve Your Website Text
There are a lot of bad websites out there, and because users are used to dealing with these poor sites they often have little patience when browsing the web.
The layout and design of the page will be covered in another few blog posts, so let’s look at the content, and how improving the content can improve the user experience of a web page – and help deliver your business’ bottom line.
1. Opening Text
Readers only have time to read 25% of the text on your website, so use the opening text wisely. The first 155 characters are also used for SEO purposes as part of the “ad” for the web page (more details on that here), so it’s important to put some thought into what you write.
2. Cut it Short
Keep content concise. Your audience doesn’t have the time to read paragraph after paragraph, and they are most likely to scan the page and look for the information they need.
Nielsen also tells us that the first 2 words of lines like a heading, caption, links, lists, and summaries are crucial areas to get right because these are the words are most likely to read as they quickly scan a web page.
Use headings, break up your paragraphs, and use bulleted or numbered lists to make your text easy to scan.
3. Get to the Point
How clear is your website? It is common to visit a website and have no idea what the organisation does based on the information readily available. While getting users to explore your website isn’t always a bad thing, you want to get your value proposition across to users.
And remember to write to your target audience, not every user that may stumble across your site. Target the user that will help deliver your business objectives (you’ve considered how your website will help deliver your objectives, right?)
4. Ask for Something
Include a call to action in your text when you can; this will also help you achieve the objectives you’ve set up for your website. And this doesn’t have to be a transaction-related call to action, it can simply be to call your offices or send an enquiry.
How We Can Help
bwired doesn’t just build websites – we help you discover how a website can help deliver on those business objectives. This includes search and social media strategies, website design and builds, and the content on your website.