Think Like a Customer to Improve Your Website Design
Posted 28 April 2014
“Customer” by 10ch on Flickr (Creative Commons)
Here at the VizionOnline blog we regularly share ideas to help our readers improve their website design. We hope to provide an informative and helpful resource for business owners with practical ideas that you can start applying straight away. Whilst a brand new web design is often a necessary next step, it’s important that you understand how to continue improving and maintaining your website.
A common mistake that businesses make is in the way that they think about their website. We can often find ourselves thinking about what our competitors might think, or whether our web designer would agree with how we’re maintaining the site.
Whilst these can be helpful factors to consider, ultimately it’s the experience provided to the end user that really matters. In other words, you might need to think like a customer to improve your website design.
Here are 3 ways in which you can start to think like a customer to improve your website design:
It’s often helpful to step right back and consider what your customers are thinking when they fire up a search engine. In most industries there are a handful of key words and phrases that every potential customer is going to search for.
However, it’s not just the highly-competitive terms that you need to consider. We also talk about the long-tail of search results, which includes those longer, highly-specific terms that users search for when they have a particular question. By thinking about the questions that customers are likely to have – including the very detailed ones that involve product names or technical phrases – you’ll be able to ensure that your content is targeting the widest possible audience and increase your search traffic.
2. Information and Tone
This is very simple, but it’s amazing how often businesses misunderstand the information and tone that their website need to provide.
Again, the information that you include needs to be targeted to your customers. The tendency can be to produce content, menus and detail which are either too detailed – generally full of jargon and industry knowledge which can be confusing to first-time customers – or too vague, failing to give your visitors the answers that they’re looking for.
It’s often helpful to put together a list of typical users, and then work out exactly what those people are looking for. It’s a subtle adjustment, but if you can think like a customer you’ll make big improvements to the overall effectiveness of your website design.
There is much that we could say on this topic – we’re web designers by trade and we’re passionate about design – but in a nutshell you need a website design that your customers will enjoy using. Having a detailed understanding of the kinds of people that you’re connecting with will help you to achieve this.
It’s important to tailor your design to your customers’ demographic. A website which is primarily targeting female students should have a very different design to a site whose primary audience is retired men. This is a highly subjective way of thinking, but your customers should be appreciated and considered on an individual basis.
Know that you need to think like a customer to improve your website design but need help taking your next steps? Why not contact us today to find out more about our leading UK website design services.