To apply user-centered web design practices you must recognize what UX design is. UX design or user experience design is the plan of how a product works and functions to make the experience of using it simple and enjoyable. Whether it is a new car or a new mattress a product is designed for a particular purpose. Companies invest billions of dollars to provide a quality experience to customers. If a product has poor UX design, companies can easily lose business. It is no different with a digital product such as a website. It is just as important for a site to meet the needs of consumers as any product on the market. A negative user experience with a website can significantly decrease your website’s traffic. There are methods that can be applied in order to increase the quality of a user’s experience with a website.
User-centered web design practices
One method in creating user centered web design is to understand your audience. A good start is to conduct research on the people you are targeting. And find out what their needs, habits and preferences are. Is your website trying to attract a specific demographic? Or is it for a much broader audience? You can also look at how your competitors in your industry are reaching customers. How are their websites engaging with clients and generating leads? Is there anything that they are not offering visitors that your website can provide? Keyword searches can be a powerful approach to recognizing your audience. Look at what they’re searching for on Google and use such results to reach them.
Make sure that users can navigate with ease through your website. One thing that is off-putting is logging on to a site that is difficult to navigate. Nobody wants to interact with a website that confuses them rather than benefits them. A way to make your site simple to navigate is to create an efficient menu. Although this might seem obvious, having what your users are searching for as a menu item makes life easier. Another thing you can do is include a search bar on your site. If there is a specific page or section that you want users to find this feature can be useful. You could also include breadcrumbs at the top of each page. This will allow users to know where they are at on your website.
Your site’s readability is a tremendous factor in user experience. We live in a world in which we see texts all around us. Whether you’re looking at billboards, traffic signs or menu options in a restaurant your mind is conditioned to read words. Whenever you go to a website you expect to read some type of content. Could you remember the last time you left a website because of how bad its wording was? An excellent way to improve the readability of your site is to use a clear font. Test multiple font families and see how they look on different screen sizes. Try to use shorter paragraphs if necessary. When it comes to websites less words can be more aesthetic. You do not want your site’s appearance to look too wordy. You also do not want the font size to be too large or small.
More user-centered web design practices
The color of your website’s layout needs to be appealing to users. Depending on what your niche is, the colors that you use have to stand out. If you aren’t sure which colors to use do a Google search on which combination is appropriate for your niche. I advise you to use no more than three colors in your layout. More than three colors could make your site look like a complete albatross. You also want to avoid using multiple bright colors as it can be rough on users’ eyes.
Call to action buttons need to be visually appealing and strategically placed. In order to get conversions or leads the buttons on your website have to serve their purpose. Using a specific color on your buttons can allow them to stand out from the rest of the page. By doing this it will catch the attention of the users of your site. The shape and size of your buttons also need to be on point. Using rectangular or round buttons is a good strategy. And they should not be too large or too small. You also want to create enough white space around them. There are a number of places that you can place them on your website. Some of these places include the navigation menu, above the fold, on the header or footer. Wherever you place your buttons, avoid using too many of them on one page.
Your website needs to be accessible to all types of people, including those that have disabilities. The beautiful thing about the internet is that nearly anyone can navigate it. At least 70% of those who are visually impaired use the internet. Unfortunately many websites are inaccessible to them and yours does not need to be one of them. A good method in overcoming this is using alt text for your images. This allows images and other elements to be described to the user. You also can make other elements keyboard interactive.
Now that you have gotten an understanding of user-centered web design practices you can now enhance your website. If you apply these steps correctly you are guaranteed to improve leads and conversions. Not only will you build a customer base, you will do better with SEO, mobile traffic and brand recognition. There are countless tools that you can use to assist you in your UX design. Some of these tools are Balsamiq, Adobe XD, Figma, Webflow or a content management system (CMS) like WordPress. With WordPress you can utilize its plugins to help you with the best UX experience.
If you have any comments or questions regarding user-centered practices and UX design feel free to drop your comment below. I will be more than happy to reply.