Tuesday, December 19, 2006

5 ways to optimize your design

Everyday thousands of websites are being created based on the needs of website owners and not the needs of their visitors. Visitors are being ignored which is the biggest reason most websites are not successful; here are 5 ways to optimize your design:

1. Become the visitor
Put yourself in the visitor’s shoes. What would a visitor browsing your website want? The goal of your website should not just be to fulfill your needs, but also fulfill the visitors needs. A good way to figure out what a visitor would want is to survey a few people who are interested in your products and services and adjust your design to fit their needs as well as your needs. This does not always have to cost money, no reason why you can’t just ask a few of your friends.
2. Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication
If you look at some of the most successful websites on the web such as Google, Flickr, and Blogger they are all simple. Why add bloated features to your website when 80 percent of your visitors will only use 20 percent of these features. Keep your goals as well as your visitors’ needs in mind when adding a feature.
3. Content is king
Make sure the content on the website is laid out in an effective way. If you just concentrate on the look and feel of a website and ignore the content, how high of a conversion rate do you think you will have? You need a concise, convincing message and solid information architecture if you want your visitors to buy your product or service. And most importantly, make sure that the content is readable and easy to understand.
4. It’s the little things that make a big difference
Every aspect of your website design needs to be thought out and scrutinized. Things such as colors, shapes and even gradients can make a big impact on the overall message. Using colors such as blue, green, turquoise, and silver can create a calm effect. Using rounded corners instead of hard edges within your design can enable a soft and personalized feeling. By combining color, shapes, pictures and effects together you can create a strong message that can help create a memorable experience for your visitors.
5. Guide your visitors
You don’t want your visitors clicking all over your website just to find a product. Reduce confusion and guide your visitors through links, navigation menus, and call to actions. Show them the right path so they only have to make a few clicks instead of 10 to buy a product. By reducing the amount of clicks your visitors make you will decrease their frustration and increase your conversion rate.

These methods of optimizing your design may seem simple, but in most cases they are overlooked. Give them a try; you might be shocked on how effective they can be and how much you can save on advertising by maximizing your design.

source: pronetadvertising.com

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