The importance of a well-performing website.
In the last 20 years, advertising techniques have changed dramatically due to ongoing technological advancements and a huge demand for convenience.
The way we find and view information is constantly changing; with fingertip access to seemingly endless information about anything and everything, the modern day consumer is driven by an on-demand culture. Younger generations of consumers are growing up with internet access, and therefore access to services that are available anywhere at any time. Technology has never been more convenient; for example, 20% of Google searches are done through voice commands and this figure is predicted to grow to 50% by 2020.
‘Back in the day’ you, or possibly your parents, might have spent a vast amount of time flicking through the Yellow Pages in hope of finding a local boiler repairman, or might have happily waited to hear your favourite song on the radio – whereas now, visiting Google, YouTube or Spotify will provide these services at our leisure.
In a culture of upgrades, we are constantly hoodwinking our perceived parameters – from steam engines to an Airbus380, flared jeans to extra slim-fit skinny chinos; from the cassette tape to a simple download. New trends are born rapidly, so it is no surprise that the platform on which we access services has changed too.
With convenience fast becoming the norm, ask yourself: does your website need to get with the times?
Sorry Pink Floyd, but you were wrong about “we don’t need no education”.
To keep your website moving forward and providing relevant content (not selling flares!), let’s take a look at what makes our somewhat impatient modern society happy – and what makes them not so. This information can help you set a well-analysed and well-researched strategy for gaining engaged traffic to your website. But what makes them leave..
Ask yourself: how long do you stay on a website for?
Apparently, most consumers stick around for less than 15 seconds…
That’s it. You have 15 seconds to capture someone’s attention and if you don’t make an impression, you’ve lost them.
Now that people have the ability to refine their searches with pinpoint accuracy, they simply spend less time looking. Gone are the days of leafing through the newspaper for the right advertisement, or buying parts when flat-pack furniture is at our disposal (and quickly).
Make sure you use every second of that quarter of a minute and presenting your website well and making it easy to use.
The ever-changing nature of technology, often taken for granted, has us competing in a constant race. But now, we no longer settle for ‘from A to B’ – we need the thrill.
For example, think about that phone you bought a few years ago. How amazing was it when you first purchased it? How fast was it at loading your favorite apps?
And how scared of dropping it were you?
Fast-forward to present day, when a day in the life of your mobile phone closely resembles an assault course, shoved at the bottom of your bag, with a scratch or two to its screen.
Technology, an amazing feature, has become the survival of the fittest. We are always ready to make room for the newer, faster, more powerful model.
Similarly, we are also always looking for better, faster, more powerful websites. Therefore, it is important to make sure your website not only looks the part, but also works to its greatest potential – and beyond.
Ever visited a website on your mobile phone and it grinds to a halt, reminiscent of the suspense that was dial-up connection? (Queue the AOL tone). This is a sure-fire way to drive away customers.
But what does it all mean, Basil? Well, the speed of your website and the usability of it across various platforms will be a massive decider in whether your site will be used, or not be used. A lack of mobile usability for your website means that Google will no longer list your website either. In the end, finding your website will be like trying to find a needle in a haystack.
“If you build it, they will come.”
On a more positive note, let’s talk about what makes consumers stay…
Unfortunately, the wise words of Kevin Costner in ‘Field of Dreams’ (or Jim Morrison in ‘Wayne’s World’, for our younger audience), do not stand up to today’s technological advancements.
Anyone can build a website. Considering the prolific amount of content management systems (such as WordPress and Wix), it’s becoming easy for people to sign up to something and then a website is there, ready-made for them. Even if you post the most beautifully-composed blog, the likelihood is that in the vast index of websites on the internet that the same information can be found elsewhere.
Therefore, to guarantee traffic, you need to stand out from the rest.
So how can we make them stay?
The internet has many weird and wonderful little rules that no one can really explain but somehow…they work. Assuming that your site is compatible with all devices, the speed is good, and the traffic is creeping in, let’s look at some rules to consider.
The 3 click rule – web practice
This is a standard web practice, which means if your user cannot find the information they are looking for in 3 clicks, they will leave your website for pastures new.
So, ask yourself: where can your website visitors go in 3 clicks?
Would they reach a dead end?
Make an easy-to-use navigation system (menu) and make sure that if you were the user, you could find what you wanted easily.
Catching their attention.
So they’re here – now how do you keep their attention?
Images can tell a story efficiently and fast, giving your potential customer a great overview of what it is you do, as well as your individual products and services.
There are various ways you can make your website stand out and keep the user’s attention.
For example, an infographic is a great way to show people how a complex topic can be explained a simple visual way.
Effective content that keeps the user on your website doesn’t always have to come in the form of text, videos are also another effective way of communicating important messages.
Additionally, the use of images and graphics to break up large chunks of texts can leave the reader wanting more.
So in conclusion, fast websites that work well on all devices and have an easy-to-use navigation structure rule the world!
Well, not really – but they definitely engage your audience and increase your conversion rates.
Interested in improving the performance of your website?