It is crucial to think about how easy it is for people to find their way around your website, because if it is too hard they will get bored or frustrated and leave. This is largely attributable to poor signposting, a cluttered front page, or even too much in the menu bar. And as small asthese issues may seem, it is enough to send potential business away.
Here are some top tips to keep them coming back for more.
1. Consistent navigation
One of the main ways to ensure a constant flow of online visitors is to have well-marked menus with consistentformatting across your entire site. This includes the homepage. Even though youmight want it to display the many different areas of your company and site, it mustnt havetoo much going on. The user should be able to see from the start that all of menus, the tabs,columns and subcategories are clearly and systematically arranged, making it as easy aspossible to navigate around.
2. Using breadcrumbs
Allow the user to see the trail from point A to point B. The key idea here is that the
user is completely aware of exactly where they are on the website; this involves knowinghow to search and find other areas of the site but also being able to find their way back toprevious pages without difficulty.
Breadcrumbs will usually resemble something like thefollowing:
Home page > Category page > Subcategory page
3. Divided categories
There is a growing theme here – pages need to be organised. As the old proverb goes aplace for everything, and everything in its place . To make a website as user-friendly aspossible (and that really is a key to keeping people on your site), it’s useful if all of thepages are arranged topically. For this you should use child pages (sub-pages) wherebyeach page is essentially a subsection of the category it comes under.
Design can play a part here too to reinforce the distinction of categories. Take the
example of a clothes store: Men and Women are the obvious dividers, of which there
will probably be many subcategories. But you will often see themens pages in one colour or design and the womens in another so it is always clear tothe user what side of the site they are on.
4. In-site search tool
This helps people who know what they are looking for find it immediately so they dont
have to waste time going through the trails to get there. It may be necessary to work on
your SEO and keywords to make sure that the most relevant results come up to match
what they are searching for, and that they are not inundated with completely unrelated
The faster and smoother it is for users to get around your site, the better.
5. A call-back option
This isnt so much about navigation but having a call-back option demonstrates to your
target audience that you are accessible. It adds to the experience of using a website to
know that the site is interactive; if they need to get in touch with you, you are on hand andready to respond.
Rob Keating is the owner of Lead Generating Websites. He is a WordPress SEO expert, and works with local and national business to connect them with their target customersonline.