Website User Experience – The Single Most Important Web Marketing Element

Driving traffic to your website is great and getting folk interested in what you do can be solid gold. But at the same time, turn them off with the site you operate and you may as well not have bothered at all.

It’s a bit like being told a shop is great by its owners, only to find yourself walking into the kind of place you wouldn’t even allow your dog to sleep. If the in-person experience isn’t solid, the rest really doesn’t matter. Even low prices and great products can’t make up for a poor user experience, which is precisely why UE is considered the single most important link in the web marketing chain.

Not convinced? Here’s a quick rundown of a few frightening facts and figures to drill the point home:

Split-Second Reactions

From the moment your users hit your home page, how long do you think it is before they form an opinion? 30 seconds? 10 seconds? Not even close – the first opinion is formed in no more than 0.5-seconds on average. That’s half a second you have to give a good first impression, without which the whole experience will be tainted from then on in.

A Deeper Judgement

After this immediate opinion is formed, consumers then instinctively and subconsciously move on to making a much deeper judgement. Incredibly, research has shown that from the moment they arrive, you have no more than 10 seconds to determine the outcome. 10 seconds to convince them to stay, otherwise they’ll head for the hills and never come back. Do your landing pages really tell the right story in just 10 seconds? If they don’t, they need to!

The 75% – 25% Rule

It’s never nice to think your hard work is going to waste, but generally speaking no more than 25% of the written content of any web page is read by its intended audience. 75% goes almost entirely overlooked, which really emphasizes the importance of conciseness and the use of visuals. Go OTT with the written content and you’ll be both wasting your time and having no impact on your prospects whatsoever.

Spreading the Word

Research has shown that somewhere in the region of three-quarters of all online consumers won’t give second chances to any site that annoyed them the first time around. Worst still, at least half of those disgruntled by any given website will happily go out of their way to tell their friends and family not to bother either. Suffice to say, this is not the kind of publicity your business needs.

Pronto Pages

Last but not least, expectations are intensifying all the time when it comes to just how fast and smooth your website as a whole should operate. As it stands, the average time customers are willing to wait for any given page to load is three seconds, after which they’ll either form a negative opinion of you or disappear entirely. Patience may be a virtue, but your website visitors simply do not have any…end of story!

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