As Ryan Singer of 37 signals mentions in his excellent post UI and Capability, design needs 3 core principles to work together be useful to the visitor.
1. Capability – The ability of the website interface to help the visitor achieve their goal. 2. Implementation – The backend of the website which gives it the Capability. 3. Affordance – The frontend of the implementation which gives the visitor easy cues to use the Capability to achieve their goal.
Applying these design principles for your Business website
Your website offers you a great opportunity not just through building your presence online but also giving you insights into what your customers want. Here are some steps you can take to apply the above principles your website.
1. Understanding the types of visitors coming to your website. What are the use cases for your website? Visitors come to your website for specific goals. This can be reading your content for information, navigating to a specific page, filling a form or adding a product to the shopping cart.
2. Aligning their goals and your business goals to map well on the website. Designing the website with your business goals is fine. But if your visitors’ goals are not aligned, they will be doing something different altogether or leaving the website disappointed.
3. Focusing on functionality as much if not more than on just look and feel. A lot of people fall for this common design trap. As Ryan elaborates, styling is important but it needs to be balanced with proper functionality.
4. Being the user and trying your website out from their perspective. As a business you have the best insight into your customers. So, trying to be one and using the website is a great way to guide your design agency and make it better for your visitors.
5. Having fall back actions when a user fails in using something correctly. Your visitors are going to make mistakes when using your website. Understanding where visitors can go wrong and building proper workarounds to get them on track is important.
6. Getting feedback from users on the design and usability. Giving visitors an option to make suggestions and comment on their experience is a great way to improve the design over time.
7. Give clear goals to your Website Design Agency on what your visitors would like to achieve. This helps them build a website that perfectly meets the needs of your visitors.
Remember, a great website experience is the most effective way of converting visitors to customers.
Dharne & Company, based in Irvine offers Website Design and SEO services for businesses in the Los Angeles area, California and across the US. Contact us to know more.