graphic illustration of web elements computer and phone for blog post designing the best website user experience for your brand

Tips for designing the best website user experience for your brand

November 9, 2021


Ladies, I hate to say it, but it doesn’t matter how fricken awesome your content or products are if your website isn’t offering your visitors a positive user experience. If you want to keep people on your site so you can turn readers into subscribers and/or visitors into customers you’ve got to make your site easy to navigate, your pages scannable, and your design consistent—you have to have a website centered around the wants and needs of your visitors.

Whether you have a website to house your blog, a full-scale ecommerce site, or an informational hub for your brand, there are some key things that you need to have on your platform in order to create this positive user experience I’m talking about. In this article I cover each of these user experience essentials needed to have a successful website and, to help you grow your audience and earnings, I also included a checklist that you can use to make sure your website is covering all it’s bases.

Navigation

First and foremost, we need to talk about the two tools your audience is using to get around your site: menus and buttons.

In order to keep your visitors from ditching your site out of frustration, your menus have to be as intuitive and easy to follow as possible. If someone has to hunt for the content or pages they’re looking for they aren’t going to stick around too long. This means keeping them simple by focusing on the core pages that make up your site. Keep in mind, you don’t want to give people too many options because that can quickly cause confusion. Think about how you move through other brand’s websites and the steps you take to find content. How do you access the shopping cart and account page? Where do you go to find things like shipping policies or contact info? How do you get back to the homepage?

Another important way your visitors are going to navigate your site, one that I think most people overlook when thinking about user experience, are buttons. This is how people get to more specific content that they may be looking for, jump between related pages, get more information, and engage with the site via CTAs (call to action). In order to make sure these important links aren’t being missed, buttons need to stand out and be easy to spot, look consistent, and most importantly they need to work.

Check your website

  • Is you main menu simple, intuitive, and at the top of your website with your logo?
  • Are the shopping cart and account page easy to access and/or in the main menu?
  • Do the buttons all look the same and are they easy to find in each page?
  • Do all of your buttons go to the right places?

footer

This is a key component of your website and where your visitors expect to find the essential info. Things like your return policy, shipping policy, terms and conditions, FAQ, site search, and copyright should all be in your footer. Because this section is at the bottom of each page of your site, I think it is also helpful to include things your visitors will want to be able to access quickly and easily like links to your social media accounts as well as access to the shopping cart and account page/registration. I personally like to have my tagline and mission statement down there too so that no matter what page my audience starts their visit on, they can easily learn what my brand is all about. Think about what content you want and/or need your visitors to be able to easily access from every page on your website as well as what you think they expect to see there.

Check your website

  • Does your footer contain links to all the essential info on your website like your policies and terms and conditions?
  • Do you have other things in your footer that you want people to be able to easily access from all pages on your website, like links to your social media pages?
  • Can your audience easily learn about your brand from your footer alone?

design

The visual design of your website can also greatly influence your website’s user experience. Think about it, if your site pages don’t match your brands look, are inconsistent, and are hard to consume than your website will appear unprofessional and untrustworthy—and no one is going to stick around let alone subscribe to/buy from you if that’s the case. By simply using your brands style guide and keeping everything visually consistent your already off on the right foot. If you have read any of my other articles you know how much I love consistency!

Besides making sure your website looks aesthetically pleasing and professional, it’s also important that your content is scannable, using consistent and easy to locate headers, as well as visually sectioning your pages using color and other design elements. Most visitors are not going to read a whole page, they are going to quickly scroll through to find specific information. If you make this process easier for them they will be happier and it will positively effect the site’s user experience.

Check your website

  • Does your website match your brand and style guide?
  • Are all of your pages and content visually consistent?
  • Is your content easily scannable?

content

Last but not least, let’s talk about some of the things you have on your site like CTAs, popups and ads. For starters, CTAs are a great way to engage your audience and turn visitors into subscribers and/or customers, but in order for them to work they need to have a clear statement directing your audience and an easy to see button. If your call to action doesn’t make sense or worse, doesn’t work, your visitor is going to either ignore it or be annoyed, neither of which helps a website’s user experience. Then there’s are popups and ads. This is a big one for me and a problem I see far too often: your popups and ads should not take away from your content! If there is so much going on within your page that your audience can’t properly consume what you have created for them, there is a major problem. And, to add to this, popups need to be easy to exit or click out of. Nothing will make a visitor flee a site faster than overbearing popups and adds. Ladies, just don’t do it. I know that having those extra ads might seem like a good idea to add a new revenue stream to your business/side hustle/blog, but you’ll have less viewers and subscribers on your site and those ads in turn could cause you to lose money instead.

On the topic of content, there is one more thing that I think is especially important for websites but is often overlooked: your audience should be able to figure out what your brand is about and what it can offer them just by scrolling through the homepage. Your mission statement and benefit to audience needs to be front and center when someone lands on your main page. It’s simple, but so important because if someone can’t figure out why they should be on your site they certainly aren’t going to stay.

Check your website

  • Are my CTAs clear in directing my audience and do the corresponding buttons work?
  • Do the popups and ads on my website make the content hard to consume?
  • Is it easy to exit or click out of my popups?
  • Can my audience learn about my brand and how it can benefit them just by visiting my homepage?

Don’t let your awesome content and products be ignored because of these small details. There are A LOT of things that can influence your website’s user experience, but thankfully most can be resolved by simply centering what your audience wants and needs when they visit and navigate through your site. With this article I have just scratched the surface when it comes to your website’s user experience and the elements that effect it. To learn more and further improve your own site, download my extended Website User Experience Checklist!

DOWNLOAD THE CHECKLIST