Who would not want to enjoy the perks of free internet if it’s being offered at your favorite place? Imagine yourself landing in one of your favorite coffee shops and instantly getting your phone/tablet connected to the public Wi-Fi network offered by the same place. Now, you would want to post a check-in or a random update about your visit. When you’re getting to enjoy free Wi-Fi then you could do a lot of things – check your social networks, catch some latest news and updates, or maybe take a quick glance at your bank account balance while sipping your favorite coffee. The truth is, in today’s world, we are so much addicted to using the internet that we log into a public network without giving a thought to whether or not that network is safe for our device.
After working hard to make your website easier to find in online searches, the last thing you want is to drive visitors away because of a poor user experience after they’ve arrived.
“Good design, usability, and user experience are more important than ever in website development,” shares SCORE mentor and technology professional, Matthew Krieger. “It’s a constant fight for visitors’ attention—any delay, complexity, or friction whatsoever could prompt users to leave your site. I often see companies put too many barriers in front of customers—overly complex signup processes, excessively strict forms, surveys with too many questions, etc. These things hurt the engagement process and can result in a lost sale.”
Here are two basic things you can do to help give your website visitors a positive experience:
Pay attention to the loading speed of your pages.
Findings released by Akamai Technologies, Inc. revealed that nearly half of Internet users expect website pages to load in less than two seconds and 40 percent are likely to abandon a page if it doesn’t load within 3 seconds. If your website pages load slowly, your business could be missing out on potential sales—and that could hurt your business’s bottom line.
According to Krieger, “Page load time and, perhaps more importantly, page responsiveness are very important to visitor perception and can ultimately impact engagement. Additionally, Google considers page performance in their ranking algorithm. There’s a balance to be struck between the desire to include advertisements, analytics mechanisms, and other page widgets (all of which can benefit the business) and the necessity of creating a fast site and a good experience for the user.”
Be direct and clear with your content.
According to Nielsen Norman Group, “On the average Web page, users have time to read at most 28 percent of the words during an average visit; 20 percent is more likely.”
To help make sure your readers are taking away what you want them to know about your company, products, and services, you need to get to the point. They don’t have time to sift through endless blocks of text or waste time on irrelevant content. Make it easy for readers to find what they want by breaking text into sections with clearly defined headings and subheadings. Also, give your web page text some white space to make it less cluttered and easier for visitors to read.
“A website’s information architecture—the art and science of structuring and presenting digital information to achieve good usability—is important to consider when developing your content. Furthermore, the need for a clear and focused message is greater than ever,” explains Krieger. “Given the overwhelming amount of digital content competing for people’s time, delivering value quickly should be a focus.”
Holiday shopping is already on the minds of many people. Some will be hitting the stores to cross things off their shopping lists. Others prefer to find the seasonal bargains from the comfort of their homes.
Americans on average are expected to spend about 908 dollars this season, an 8 percent increase from last year. The national retail federation shows 57 percent of consumers plan to buy gifts online this holiday season. The scary thing though — Americans lost over 800 million dollars to cyber theft in 2014 alone.
“When you’re doing online shopping, a couple things you need to watch out for, make sure you’re on a secure site, that you know the site that you’re on. You need to check that you’re on a site that has ‘HTTPS” in the address bar, and also there should be a little lock in that address bar too,” Cheryl Parson, President at the Better Business Bureau of West Central Ohio, said.
To protect yourself from online fraud, Parson says there are some additional things you can do: make sure to Use a credit card, track your online transactions for any red flags, and double check the web address to make sure it’s not trying to imitate a popular site like Amazon.
“There’s another out there that is not really Amazon, but it looks like it. People are using sites that you think you are on the right site, the name’s similar and everything, but it’s not the correct site,” Parson said.
If you realize you’ve been a victim of online fraud, contact your credit card company right away, and you can also report it to the Better Business Bureau for additional help.