Getting website visitors is great, but your business needs more than just page views. Your website needs to be converting searchers into viewers and viewers into customers. Today we’ll look at an important metric that will track your success in this area – dwell time.
Our web designers spend a lot of time thinking about how to improve dwell time on the websites we build. And we’ll present the top four ways to increase this metric here in this blog post: modern design, clean content, clear navigation, and easy next steps.
Like it or not, there are conventions to web design and shift with the times. By following modern web design principles, visitors will understand how to use and navigate your website. Just like movie-goers have expectations of certain genres, so website visitors will expect certain things from your design. Where to find contact information, store hours, navigation buttons, social media icons, and shopping carts are all examples of these expectations. You don’t have to be a slave to these rules, but they should only be broken with careful consideration.
Using modern design principles will also help to create trust between your business and website visitors. A website that looks straight out of 2002 is likely to cause potential customers to pause. You don’t need to rebuild your site every year. But if you’re still using a design from twenty years ago, then you are probably losing customers.
Website content is often treated as an afterthought to web design. But poor content is often the cause of a high bounce rate – no matter how beautiful the design. First, your content should be engaging. You only have a few seconds to capture the interest of visitors and bland, jargon-filled content just won’t do the trick. Whether your content is text, image-based, or video; put your best foot forward and capture visitor’s attention right from the beginning.
Second, your content should be easy to digest. There is a time to show off your technical knowledge – but your website should feature more generalized content. If you open your home page with a wall of thick text, you’ll lose more visitors than you convert. Keep it to short, snack-sized bits until they venture deeper into your site (to a blog, for example).
Modern internet users expect your website to be easily navigable. If they are left hunting for the right page or searching for a link, they are likely to leave and find a better website. Our attention spans are rapidly shrinking, and this means that your navigation options need to be immediately clear without more than a second or two of searching.
Creatives often talk about reaching flow state – that place where you are fully immersed in your work and you feel energized. A similar concept is happening to a visitor as they engage with your website – and your design is either supporting or hindering the achievement of that flow state. When your navigation is confusing, you risk breaking that flow and losing the customer. But when your website navigation is intuitive and clear, you allow visitors to understand and engage with your website content.
Easy Next Steps
Along similar lines, you should strive to make straight the path from visitor to customer. This means smoothing out any bumps along the conversion pathway on your website. If you’re running an e-commerce site, then make sure the checkout process is easy and clear. If your goal is lead generation, then streamline your data collection process until nobody has an excuse to not complete the process.
Whatever your conversion goals, a good web designer will spend time optimizing, testing, and re-optimizing the process so that it runs smoothly every time. By removing obstacles to conversions, you can ensure that visitors are not bouncing from your site because of too-long forms, confusing purchase options, or unclear next steps.
Effective Web Design
Building websites that grow your business is our passion. Our web designers spend countless hours refining their engagement strategies so that you will see positive results from your new website. We combine modern design with professional content into a package that is easy to digest and encourages conversions.