Your web design goal should be to improve your UX (user experience) and enable visitors to navigate your site more easily. Remember, the purpose of your website is not to be fancy and impress people with your design skills, but to convert your visitors into leads or customers. For that to happen, your site should be optimized towards steering your visitors to follow through on your call-to-actions. Here are a few web design tips to help you out.
Don’t Make Multi-Page Lists
Multi-page lists or slides are plain out annoying. If you have a list of the “Top 20 Things You Need to Know About X,” put them all on one page, instead of dividing them up into 20+ pages. Yes, your first page will load quicker that way, but nobody has the patience to sit there and click through 20 pages, and going through the entire list will take a longer load time anyway.
The same goes for things like your FAQs section. Include all the frequently asked questions and their answers on one page. If you need to divide them into separate categories or topics, include all the FAQs about each topic on one page. A common mistake is to load each question on a separate page, forcing users to keep clicking the “back” button.
Avoid Drop Down Menus
Drop down menus, in which each menu option expands when the mouse hovers over them, are annoying. They bring unexpected choices to the user and confuse them. In addition, they are terrible on mobile devices, where there is no mouse to use — in which case, they will have no way to click on the expanded menu options. Besides, you’re likely to hide important pages in the drop down part.
Instead of using drop-down menu options, choose the most important pages and put them in the top menu. You can include pages of secondary importance in a second menu, which can appear as a widget in the sidebar or footer of your site.
Spice Up Your Menu
Make your menu items more original and less bland. Don’t include menu item titles such as “Services” or “Products” or “Pricing” or “About Us” or other unoriginal titles. These aren’t attractive and won’t get many clicks. Come up with original menu titles to increase your click-through rate. Consider using keywords in your menu titles so that Google can crawl and rank your site better.
Avoid Interfering Popups
Popovers work very well for building a subscriber base and gaining leads. However, there is a right way and a wrong way of using them. For starters, use popovers (which are forms that appear over the original content in the same browser window) and not popups (which open up in a new window and are blocked by most browsers these days).
Next, make sure that the popover can be easily closed. Make the “X” button clear and conspicuous. This is extremely important on mobile devices such as smartphones which have small screens. If the popover takes up the entire smartphone screen, users may not be able to close the popover, causing them to leave your site. You may want to show your popover on desktop devices only.
In addition, consider using another form instead of pop ups. Welcome mats or bars (which are large forms that appear at the top of the screen before your content) are very effective, as are signup forms that appear in the middle or at the end of your content. If you do use a popover, consider using a delayed popover that appears after a certain set time.
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