User experience is central to any website. It’s no use driving customers towards your site if they don’t stick around. When it comes to creating the right user experience, navigation is at the top of the list.
Why? In short, users don’t like waiting around. On average, site visitors will give your site about 15 seconds before they lose patience. If they can’t easily navigate to the right information, you can wave goodbye to that enquiry, sale or subscription.
The question is: how do you know if your website navigation is confusing visitors? In this post, we’ll look at 3 key aspects of website navigation.
1. Home page
First and foremost, consider whether your site tells visitors what you do. We recently spoke to a potential customer who was disappointed that their site wasn’t converting. They hadn’t had a single conversion in nearly 18 months.
After a free performance audit, we found that the home page simply didn’t tell visitors what their company does. If it’s not clear what you do or what value you offer, people are much more likely to turn away. Sites need to make this clear or make it very easy to navigate to the relevant information within that 15 second window.
Once users have landed on your home page, they’ll most probably use your site’s menu to find what they’re looking for. Whether you’ve got five pages or 500, your site’s menu is crucial for navigation.
Your menu should be organised using a hierarchy. Rather than listing all your pages, giving users too many choices, break things down by listing parent pages. ‘About’, ‘Products’ and ‘Contact’, for instance, will allow users to narrow down their search and see a list of pages relevant to them.
How do users know where they are once they have navigated to a certain page? Breadcrumbs are a useful tool to keep them in the know. In short, this means a trail of links showing how they got to the page they’re on. It makes it easier to navigate back, using checkpoints along the way.
Let’s say they were looking for a mens t shirt on a fashion website. They might need to click through ‘Mens’, ‘Tops’ and then ‘T-Shirts’ before clicking on a product they like. After doing so, it should be easy for them to quickly return to the ‘T-Shirts’ page to look at more products. With a breadcrumb trail, they can see every step of their journey and return to whichever page they require.
That said, it should also be easy to return to the homepage whenever required. Make sure your logo links back to the homepage or add a ‘Home’ link in the menu.
Expert web design
Don’t let your site send visitors on a wild goose chase. Nettl Bury can create a bespoke, user-friendly website or ecommerce store that sends users exactly where they need to be. With a site that’s easy to navigate, you can expect more conversions and a boosted bottom line. Get in touch with us today on 0161 764 6464 to discuss your project.