If you’ve had an online business for any length of time at all, you recognize the importance of website traffic. You’re keenly aware that no visitors equals no sales. So you’ve put considerable effort into attracting people to your website by writing articles, utilizing Google Adwords, participating in forums, exchanging links, etc., And your hard work has paid off. You’ve earned a respectable position in the search engine results and you’re getting a regular stream of visitors to your website.
But something’s wrong. You’re not getting any sales!
Naturally, there are countless reasons why people don’t buy a certain product or service. For example, it may not be exactly what they’re looking for, the price doesn’t fit their budget, someone else is offering a better deal, etc.
But all too often, the primary reason website visitors aren’t buying is because the website isn’t user-friendly.
What’s a user-friendly website? In simplest terms, it’s a website where your visitors can quickly find what they’re looking for and easily make their purchase.
It encompasses the design and layout, the navigation menu, the sales message, the images, the use of colors and fonts, the general content, the ordering process … in fact, all the elements that make up a website.
But probably the most important element in this list is the navigation menu because if people get lost in your website, they’re going to leave.
A navigation menu needs to clearly show the way through your website. There needs to be enough links to give visitors an overview of your site’s content — but not so many that they have to click repeatedly to reach their desired destination.
It’s been shown that most people are fairly persistent. They’ll click on several links in an effort to find what they want — but the frustration level builds with each additional click.
It’s not unlike trying to call someone at a company and being presented with an automated menu. The voice starts out by giving you variety of options and you enter the one that seems to most closely fit your needs. Then you’re presented with another set of options, so you enter another number – only to be given more options. You try again. Finally, after going down several levels, you may or may not reach the department you originally wanted.
Did you enjoy the experience? Or did you hang up in total frustration?
Always remember that your website visitors are not nameless, faceless entities. They’re real people with real needs. And the more you can help them to find what they want on your website, the better chance you’ll have of making a sale.