How to give your brand's website a facelift

How to give your brand's website a facelift

Based on lessons learned from improving websites here are our top five tips on how to optimize your visitors’ Web experience:
These days, it seems that everyone has one or more websites, for personal and professional purposes. For many consumers, an organization website is the first ― if not only ― place to gather information. With that in mind, it is extremely important to nail that first impression of your brand the website gives and ensure that it enhances visitors’ experience.

Our top five tips:
1. Reduce clutter. Over the past several years, several television shows have been produced about hoarders whose homes are cluttered and unnavigable. From a design standpoint, some websites fall victim to “digital hoarding” by overwhelming visitors with too many graphics or copy, all of which are competing for attention. Your site should offer a lot of valuable information, but do not try to jam it all on one page. Break up text into digestible chunks. Simple layouts with clear sections enable users to scan more easily and find the content they seek.

2. Tighten up your navigation. Remember that you want to encourage users to interact with your website, not turn them away by presenting information in unintuitive ways. Ensure that your website’s navigation makes information easy to find. Good navigation tells visitors where they are on your website, where they can go, and how to return directly to the home page. If your display is not consistent with the visitor’s expected experience, she may go elsewhere to find that information.

3. Create pithy content. Busy, time-pressed, multi-tasking consumers do not have time to read through paragraphs of prose. Keep website headers, article headlines and other text clear, short, and concise. If you can say something in ten words, don’t use 20.

4. Design for mobile. Considering the many ways users access websites (at home, the office, and on the go), make sure that yours is compatible with all major browsers and mobile devices.

5. Check for broken links. Visitors get frustrated when they go to a site and click on a link only to find that it does not work or leads to a completely unrelated page. Take the time to check each link to make sure that it is not broken and that it takes your visitor where she wants to go.

Even if a website is beautifully laid out and checks all the boxes in terms of user experience, typos can negate all of your meticulous planning. The buck does not stop at simple, functional usability. A company’s website is like a corporate resume. A good corporate Web steward dedicates time to it, passes content to others for review and carefully proofs every word. Imagine a potential employer’s disappointment if they come across your resume and note immediately that you accidentally forgot the extra “d” in the word “address.” If an error occurs despite your best efforts, you should correct it immediately, rather than scheduling fixes for a later time. Nothing irritates Web users more than an error that is not fixed, even after it is identified. Whether you are representing yourself or a company, your website says a lot about your brand. It helps if that message comes in a clear, accurate, and compelling manner.

PR Daily