A recent Pew Research Study reported that 85% of Americans say they visit websites online daily and 35% say they are online “constantly.”
Among those, over half will spend less than 15 seconds on any given site they visit? Or that nearly 40% of surfers will exit a website that loads slowly or unevenly. As you can see, the attention spans of today’s online consumers are even less than they are when they are television channel surfing. If you are a website developer or designer, you are all too familiar with the ever-decreasing attention span of the American online consumer. Recent studies reveal that the most effective online sites are those that capture and maintain user interest in less than 59 seconds.
In that limited time span of anywhere from 15 seconds to 59 seconds, business websites must visually capture the attention of the consumer while simultaneously offering the tools, content and functionally for the user to efficiently and effectively navigate the website, obtain the information and/or product(s) they seek, and quickly and easily take the next steps to reach out to the brand directly.
Some of the most common and effective solutions for securing consumers during this brief 59 second window are quite simple. First and foremost, web designers must offer engaging and original content and visual images and representations to users that are imaginative, easy to understand and “consume” and support sustained interest. Second, without easy-to-use navigational tools, all the original content and images in the world will not keep a user on a site nor secure repeat engagement. Websites that focus on user experience by incorporating a navigation bar (Navigational Website Design Mistakes to Avoid for SEO Success), minimalist drop-down menus, a search bar, and links to the home page on every web page are some of the most successful in securing users and repeat business.
Online consumers can be quite fickle if they feel that a website wasn’t really designed with them in mind. Creating a user-experience that inspires a sense of confidence and trust in a business website and its brand can often be as simple as adding an SSL certificate to the site to make users feel secure in conveying personal data. In addition, offering users multiple means by which to communicate with corporate staff, both electronically (with automated chat functionality and email) and with live representatives (with live chat, or click-to-call telephone links), goes a long way in inspiring credibility and trust in a business and its products.
Focusing on the simple things that improve user-experience will aid considerably in securing new customers and improving repeat engagement over time.
If you would like to discover more ways to improve your site visitors’ user-experience, contact Proctor Digital at 773.664.5819. We love supporting business’ in their effort to stand out in a crowded online marketplace.