Web usability: the basics
What is website usability and why is it important? Website usability is all about making a site in such a way that Internet users can quickly find what they’re looking for on the website. A useable and effective website would reap you the rewards. Every penny invested in improving your website’s usability will return you 10 or even 100 times more than the original investment. Redesign of web usability can increase the conversion rate by 100%.
Your website has to be user-friendly and easy-to-navigate. That’s a must for those websites that want to succeed on the web. There are certain things that users become accustomed to. As practice shows, people expect to see certain layouts and phrases. For example:
- Сompany logo should be placed on the top-left corner of the site with a link back to the homepage.
- The term “About us” is usually used for organization information.
- As a rule, the information that flashes and is allocated above the top logo is usually taken for advertisement. Therefore, if you want to place an important message in that area, think twice. People usually ignore advertisements and banners when they visit a website. It means that your important message can be left without attention.
- Navigation menu has to be in the same place throughout all web pages.
- If you use the term “shopping cart”, keep in mind that it’s usually used for the items that people can purchase from the website.
Internet matures, therefore more and more things have to be done properly. If you break these basic rules, you can be left over with a website that’s poorly usable and absolutely unfriendly to web users. A good quality website should answer three main questions of a visitor: “Where am I?” “Where have I been?” and “Where can I go?”
Pages should download quickly. According to the studies it shouldn’t take longer than 8 seconds for a page to download. If it takes longer, don’t expect your visitors to wait for ages. There are thousands of other websites where they could go and find the needed information. However, you could speed up the download time of your website.
- Don’t use tables, but go for CSS;
- Create your navigation items using CSS but not images