First impressions count for everything when it comes to websites. In real life, you might have second crack at forming someone’s view of you: making a joke or warmly shaking someone’s hand. But online, when the average viewer’s attention is being pulled in a million different directions, you have to hit them exactly right to make sure they keep coming back.
Working with clients over the years, we've uncovered five simple tips that will help you present a great first impression so you can convert a website visitor into a fan.
1. Make your pages consistent.
Few things are as confusing as when each page looks different than the page that came before it. Web users need consistency when it comes to websites. This means when they click through the items in your menu, they always thing they’re on your site. If your structure is sloppy and inconsistent, you look sloppy and inconsistent.
2. Ensure quick load times.
If you think the people in the line at the DMV are impatient, multiply that by a factor of a bajillion to approximate their impatience with website loading pages. If your site doesn’t open in a reasonable amount of time, your visitors are gone, baby.
3. Clean up your logo.
Your logo is the flag of your website. It communicates important information about you at a glance. If that information has anything to do with tired clipart or design ideas borrowed from anybody else, it can have a negative effect on your visitors.
4. Appropriate colors.
Colors can communicate a mood to someone before they even read a word. The colors of your website should be attractive and also appropriate. An IBM blue probably isn’t the right color for a preschool website, and electric pink isn’t the right shade for a funeral home.
5. Everything works.
If a link is broken, if your margins are askew, if your images don’t load – these are all big mistakes that reflect badly on you as an organization. Taste is subjective, but operability isn’t.