According to a study by Adobe, if the content of your website is visually unappealing, almost 40% of consumers will leave the site.
Here are five more reasons why design matters for your website marketing.
1 — First Impressions Matter
Your website is often the first interaction a customer has with your business, and the average internet user spends less than 15 seconds on a new website. As a result, they will judge your company in the first few seconds, before learning anything more about you.
Thus, durable design and layout are vital to earning a visitor’s trust before they leave the page. In a recent survey, 48% of people said that website design was the most critical factor in judging the credibility of a business.
Since you don’t have much time to gain users’ interest, it is essential to use eye-catching visuals to grab a visitor’s attention and convince them to start reading the page or browsing your site.
To ensure the best first impression, it is vital to avoid overwhelming visitors with too much information. Keeping landing pages focused on a single offer can increase conversion rates by as much as 266%. This is one of the reasons successful website marketing campaigns often use ten or more different landing pages to improve lead generation.
Squarespace sets an excellent example for creating an impactful first impression:
The entire page is dedicated to a single, striking image with just enough text to get across what their business does and no more. The value of clicking the call-to-action is communicated, and even the button itself is a positive, encouraging message. This is ideal for a brand focused on helping people grow or start their online business.
2 — Great Design Means More Leads
Once a user has decided to stay and check out your site, it should build their trust and interest in your business. High traffic pages such as landing pages and blog posts should always be designed with lead generation in mind. This can often be achieved with simple design changes, for example:
- Changing links to buttons can result in significant increases in lead generation.
- Highly visible sign-up and call-to-action buttons.
- Moving long text below the fold.
Interactive elements can also have a significant impact on lead generation by engaging visitors with a fun activity to both keep them on your site and educate them about your products.
For example, Warby Parker offers an interactive quiz on their homepage to help users find their ideal glasses frames.
This is a great approach to introduce new visitors to their product catalogue in a fun way that focuses on the customer. Visitors are encouraged to register for a free trial after participating; allowing them to follow up if something caught their eye immediately.
Social proof is a notable factor in deciding to trust a business for most people. 68% of consumers agree that positive customer reviews increase their trust in a brand.
If visitors can see that others are happy with your service, they will trust you more.
In addition to providing a testimonials page, scattering testimonials and reviews throughout your site is an effective way to give social proof. Site visitors rarely head straight to your testimonials page, especially if they aren’t even thinking about buying yet.
By including customer testimonials on landing pages and other areas of your site, visitors can see who is working with your business without needing to seek it out-showcasing awards and recognition as another great way to build trust signals into your site design.
3 — Grow Your Mailing List
Excellent website marketing design enables you to generate more subscribers for your opt-in marketing, such as SMS campaigns. Use attention-grabbing calls-to-action to make sure visitors don’t miss your newsletter, and communicate the benefits of subscribing.
Attracting more subscribers to your SMS campaign enables you to tailor your conversion approach to each lead. This leaves your website pages free to focus on a single conversion goal, instead of trying to attract both new visitors and qualified leads.
Exit-intent popups are also an effective method of both growing your mailing list and convincing more visitors to return. For example, if a user browses your store and leaves without buying, an exit popup offering a discount for opting in could convince them to head back into the site or return later to buy an item that was too expensive. Exit popups don’t always have to offer a discount or promotion either.
Giving leaving visitors the chance to upgrade the content they were viewing can also be an effective way to generate opt-ins. For example, offering a download link for an extended version of the article they were reading, or a related eBook. RazorSocial saw a massive 520% increase in conversions after adding this exit popup to their blog content:
Exit popups are also a useful way to gather feedback from people leaving your site.
Attracting site visitors to your opt-in forms is one benefit of excellent site design; increasing the visitors who complete it is another. Streamlined web form design can convince more people to sign up by asking for less information and speeding up the opt-in process.
4 — Responsive Website Design
Mobiles and tablets have replaced computers and laptops as the most popular devices for browsing the internet. That happened back in 2016. This makes responsive web design a crucial part of website marketing. Your website design needs to be able to respond to any screen size and layout, and work great with both mouse and touch input.
DropBox is an excellent example of a successful, responsive design.
Their landing page adapts to make the best use of any screen layout, moving text columns and even rotating the image to achieve an appealing visual design at all times. Extra details such as the font colour inversion make this a highly coherent responsive design.
There are plenty of website builders that provide responsive templates which can be edited with little experience, so there is no excuse for website designs that work poorly on mobile devices. Despite this, half of all landing pages still are not optimised for mobile.
Without a responsive website design, many internet users will have a poor first experience of your site.
Furthermore, Google has made mobile-first indexing a priority for achieving high search engine result ranks.
5 — Site Usability
40% of internet users will abandon your site if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. This shows that consumers expect to be able to browse your site quickly and easily.
Anything getting in the way of that, from loading times to navigation or layout issues, will cost you conversions.
The impact of your site’s usability is visible. If users struggle to understand or navigate your site, they are much less likely to buy and will leave with a poor impression of your user experience.
On top of this, the ease of browsing and searching on your site can be a significant factor in search result ranking.
Furthermore, the effort you put into making your site easy to use is often taken by visitors as an indicator of your customer service.
If getting around your site and learning about your products is hard work, visitors won’t expect to do business with you to be a painless experience. It is vital to avoid this, as customer service is one of the top priorities of online shoppers.
Besides convincing more site visitors to stick around long enough to make a purchase, focusing on site usability helps keep more long-term customers. For example, using customer data to tailor the browsing experience for each user and show personalised product recommendations. These features make finding exciting products and browsing your store easier than setting up a new account elsewhere.
Website design plays a vital role in the success of any online marketing campaign. Growing your business must involve creating a website that inspires visitors to learn more about your company. Conversely, poor design can turn away customers and build the wrong kind of reputation.