You will have heard the saying “first impressions count”. Well, this fact of life also applies to your company website too. Getting those first impressions wrong could end up costing your business where it hurts the most – the bottom line. Before you are considering a new website design or website refresh you should read these ten research-backed facts to understand what really matters and how to avoid costly design mistakes.
Appearance and credibility are inextricably linked. According to web credibility research f, 75% of web users admit to making judgment’s about a company’s credibility based on their website design.
Ok, so your company’s credibility is based upon your website design, so how long have you got to make that important first impression? The bad news is studies have shown that it takes only 50 milliseconds (that’s 0.05 seconds!) for users to form an opinion about your website. Quite literally, a decision is formed in the blink of an eye.
First impressions stick. A positive first impression about your website has been found to lead to ongoing higher user satisfaction and can have a priming effect on your customer’s future interactions with your business. Research shows that positive priming can boost user satisfaction and conversely unfavourable first impressions have a significant ongoing negative effect on future user satisfaction.
You should avoid website errors of all types, no matter how small they seem. Stanford University research found that broken links and typographical errors have a significantly more negative effect on users opinions of websites and businesses than people may first assume. Get proofing that website!
Over 60% of all internet searches are now completed on mobile. This is up 10% in just over two years. So what does this mean for your website? It means that an increasing number of your users will view your website on a small screen, so your website needs to be not only responsive (changes size for different devices) but also will likely need to include elements that are specifically designed for mobile.
In 2015 Google announced that websites that were responsive and mobile-friendly would be favoured in search results. When falling out of the top 3 search results can result in a 90% drop in website visits, this is a fact that cannot be ignored. A detailed study by Moovweb has since found that 81% of the search results in the top 3 positions were mobile-friendly. Make sure your website design makes the mobile grade.
Your website is like a sports car. It may look great, but the real performance comes from what is under the bonnet. Behind your website, the underlying source code can affect your search results. You will need a professional web developer to follow the coding best practices that search engines demand in order to improve your rankings for search engine optimisation (SEO).
When it comes to websites, the adage ‘the older the better’ does not apply. Stanford research shows that internet users assigned higher credibility to websites which had been updated regularly and often. Businesses often make the mistake of investing every few years in a website refresh and then neglect the site. We recommend the new gold-standard approach of ‘growth-driven web design’ to meet the exacting demands of today’s web user.
In today’s world people do not hang around. The same applies to your website. You will need to ensure that it is designed with the load speed in mind. Your website load speed can be affected by pictures, videos and coding practices. Adobe has found that 39% of website visitors (your potential customers!) will leave a website if images take too long to load.
According to a report from the Society of Digital Agencies (SoDA) 77% of digital agencies rated their client’s websites user experience (UX) as a significant weakness for their client, making website design the most significant weakness identified.