What Should I Focus On When Optimizing for User Experience?

The Internet can be fickle: while you can have high-quality, relevant content on your site that answers questions put out by potential customers in the form of search queries, if the user experience of your website is not top-notch, you can lose the user. People are impatient, and the online world is filled with answers. If your webpage takes too long to load, your user will leave, resulting in an increase bounce rate. Making sure your site is optimized for a variety of users in many possible situations will help keep users on your site, navigating through different pages to get the answers and potentially convert.

Where are people looking at your website?

Do you know where the majority of your website traffic is coming from? Google Analytics provides a helpful dashboard so you can tell how much of your content is coming in from desktops versus on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. If the majority of your content is from mobile users, you have the different browsing conditions to consider, including the speed of offline connection, different qualities in devices, and the steps taken by the user to reach your website. By going to the Audience dashboard within your Google Analytics account, you will be able to view the most common mobile devices used to view your site, as well as the bounce rate for each. Making sure your website is fully optimized for mobile without foregoing quality for any user is critical, including optimizing for speed, having each important aspect of a page able to fit to the size of the screen and creating easily accessible calls-to-action.

What does the user’s internet connection look like?

With the rise of smartphone usage in online browsing, making sure your site is equipped to handle different levels of connectivity is key to keeping users on the go. Depending on the mobile network, the user can have anywhere from a 5G to a 2G connection, and should still be able to visit your website without a poor user experience. You can test how your site loads on varying degrees of Internet by using a Network Information API, as well as making coding edits to improve the page speed by withholding larger assets such as videos and high-resolution images.

How did the user get here?

Every person on the internet has a journey, a path that they took to enter the queries to reach your site. The journey does not conclude at the landing page: where are they going to go on your site? Are there simple ways for the user to reach similar pages about related products or services? Making sure your users can go seamlessly from page to page with relevant calls-to-action and internal links can help your users find every piece of information they need in a few simple clicks, making them more likely to choose your business.

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