Are your website visitors bailing out early? Are you struggling with sales funnel leakage? Your website may be missing the mark. Just because it makes sense to you doesn’t mean it makes sense to your website visitors. Don’t be a focus group of one.
First, define your goals. What is the point of the website? How do you want your visitors to use your website? To move through it? Just because the site looks fresh and the graphics are beautiful doesn’t mean it is doing a good job. It is very easy to get caught up in stats on page views and visitor numbers in the analytics, don’t confuse those numbers with good site usability.
Pay attention to what the purpose of the website is. If you are providing information on location or customer service, for example, expect that visitors will stay long enough to find the answer then leave or bounce. This is not a bad thing. You’ve provided them the information they were seeking and (hopefully) in a succinct and pleasant way. If you’re looking to sell or engage for remarketing purposes, then you want to keep visitors in recirculating and revisiting as much as possible. This is when you want to be concerned about bounce rate.
If you’re afraid that you might have missed the mark, don’t fret. You’re not alone. You’d be surprised how many good companies overlook site usability. Your site analytics can help you understand how visitors move within your website. Consider employing the expertise of a digital marketing agency that has the resources to track and report exactly how visitors move through your website. Keyword research tools, eye tracking studies, mouse movement capture, heat mapping, A/B testing. These are very useful tools when studying website usability. However, licensing these tools can be costly for one company or for a temporary test period. There will also be indirect costs reflected in the time it will take to learn, implement, and use the tools. It may be more cost effective to employ an agency that already subscribes to such services. One that is already adept at using them.
There is great value in knowing how website visitors move through your site. Once you know where the trouble spots are and where leakage is occurring you can then make efficient incremental changes to plug the holes.
Driving Point: Consider the purpose of your website when designing and reviewing. Don’t just guess about the usability of your website. Test and know for sure. The investment is worth it.