Some Stuff About User Experience, eCommerce, Social Media & etc.

Tag Archives: guide

How to Improve Conversions through Surveying

In business, the customer may not always be right, but when it comes to getting better conversions through your website – it pays to listen to what they want. In fact, by asking the right kinds of questions, you can get vastly more information and insights that go well beyond your typical analytics package.

Surveying potential customers is a good indicator of where users may be slipping through the cracks in your sales funnel. Of course, most customers don’t have the time to fill out page after page of questions, so what you ask, and how you ask it, can make all the difference.

With Surveys – Less is More

The first step to writing intelligent survey questions begins with the end in mind. Ask yourself, what goals do you want to achieve with this survey? An open-ended statement like “to find out what my customers want” isn’t a concrete goal, because the answers could be all over the map. Questions without a clear objective also make it impossible to create a prioritized list for your team or developers to focus on.

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A Framework for Site Reviews (with Examples)

Over the past decade, I’ve been part of many reviews of websites, both in-person, as a consultant (prior to 2009) and at many events. I’ve found that much of the time, the reviews themselves lack structure (particularly those that happen “on the fly” during a conference panel or informal sit-down). Thankfully, during my recent face-off with Distilled’s Will Critchlow in London, I had an excuse to noodle on that and work up some ideas.

The Searchlove conference had a unique concept for our classic presentation battle. We were each given three websites to review around 12:30pm and had to give 30 minute presentations using slide decks 4 hours later. My will to win and avenge my depressing loss at Mozcon Seattle was stronger than my jetlag, and I gave the following presentation:

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5 Tips For Improving Your Product Landing Pages

It is important for online marketers to create fully optimized landing pages so that users clicking on advertisements are directed to compelling, relevant information that encourages them to interact with the brand.

Mashable interviewed Zach Morrison, vice president of strategy at Elite SEM on best practices for creating landing pages that convert.

1. Optimize the layout and design for Web reading

“Eyetracking research studies have shown that there’s an actual science and method to users’ online behavior and how their brains and eyes digest what they’re seeing on the page,” says Morrison. “What this means is that a Web user is first drawn to look at the top left of the page and then their eyes follow a diagonal line across the center to the bottom right of the page.”

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Developers, UX Is Your Business Too!

Software developers often think the user experience as something better left to either the interaction designers or the visual designers on their teams. In actuality, developers can have profound impacts on the user experience of the products they’re working on. This article will explore some areas of experience design in which the development process has a more direct role. This is not to say that developers can substitute for UX and interaction designers, but they can play a role in making compelling applications.

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The Seven Deadly Sins of Sign-Up Form Design

The sign-up form is one of the most critical points in the process of users developing a relationship with your site. It’s also the point where a flaw in the interaction can be the difference between a user becoming a new customer or becoming a bounce statistic on your web analytics. While many things can be wrong with a sign-up form, here are the top seven mistakes (in no particular order) we think are critical flaws that are guaranteed to frustrate users and likely to drive them away.

1. Benefits of signing up not being clear or not stated at all

Ideally, a user will know why they want to sign up when they do. However many sites that offer a lot of content pre-login will interrupt a user’s experience with a sign-up requirement, but not explicitly state why the user needs to register. Do not assume that the user remembers or understands why they should sign up. The benefits of a site are far too often left to the user to discover on their own, yet it costs nothing to remind them with concisely worded text.

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Retail E-commerce Usability Part 6: The Shopping Cart

Sometimes it’s a basket. Sometimes it’s a bag. Whatever you decide to call it, the online shopping cart is one component you do not want to underestimate! A great shopping cart can make or break a sale in the virtual world. On the web, there is no salesperson ushering the customer towards the register or post-dressing room with chatter, “Can I hold these at the front for you?”

Instead, there is usually a small icon or text link at the top right of the page that keeps track of the products that the customer is interested in purchasing. These virtual shopping carts (unfortunately) are easier to abandon than one a customer might fill up in person, after all it just takes one click to leave the site.

It’s easy to want to get creative when putting together your website, but there are some aspects that work best when kept simple. The shopping cart is one of them. Use industry standards to your advantage so users do not have to think twice when they are shopping on your site. The golden rule is that the shopping cart should always be intuitive, easy to access, easy to update, and drive customers to checkout. Here we will go over the basics of an ideal shopping cart.

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Retail E-Commerce Usability Part 5: The Product Page

For this next installment on retail e-commerce usability, we will focus on the product page. Product pages are virtual descriptions designed to sell an item to a consumer. Since the potential buyer is unable to get their hands on the actual product, it is extremely important to relay as much accurate information as possible on the product page. What colors are available? What are the dimensions? What does the back look like? What are the shipping costs? These types of descriptive questions should be answered on the product page.

But that’s not all. Virtual shopping also entails virtual, “Do you think this will look good on me?,” “What about this one?,” and “Should we get this for Mom’s birthday?” types of questions. These questions are solved through various social tools on the product page that are becoming a standard for retail e-commerce.

This overview on e-commerce usability for the product page will cover the basics and then some. Keep in mind that your target audience and the type of product you are selling effects what the ideal set-up of the product page looks like. For example, luxury websites should not highlight the price in orange or boldly advertise savings deals, but discount sites should. For more information about product page usability specific to your company, feel free to contact us.

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Retail E-Commerce Usability Part 4: Making the Most Out of Quick Look

How can you get your customers to the shopping cart faster?

In an attempt to get users to shop faster, many online retailers have added a “Quick Look” feature that allows customers to remain on the multi-product page while adding an item to their virtual shopping cart. In my opinion, this feature is extremely useful when shopping online and has the potential to increase sales.

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Expanded Footer Usability

Over the past few years, expanded home page footers have become de rigueur for sites for their search engine optimization (SEO) benefits. If done correctly, the expanded footer can also play a role in enhanced usability of your website – that is, if basic usability principles are not thrown to the wind in the name of SEO.
There are multiple usability benefits to the expanded footer driven by the ability to provide your visitor access to content that may not be easily accessed or addressed in your main navigation.

  • The footer can provide links deeper into your site and to particular content areas of interest to visitors
  • ­By doing this it can take the place of an outdated concept of a site map and reduce the need for visitors to turn to the search engine to find specific content of interest.
  • It can also be an area to place links (such as a store locator), short forms (such as for contact) or icons (such as for social media) that do not have a place in the main body of the page and may be crowded in the utility link area in the upper right.
  • The footer can also be used for showing a little more personality, providing links to frequently updated content like a blog or events and a quick way to contact a company by providing detailed contact information or a simple form.
However, in order to gain these benefits, the footer must be executed correctly. Following are the top five usability do’s and don’ts to think about for the expanded footer on your site:

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Retail E-Commerce Usability Part 3: Just Browsing

The web is filled with less-than-ideal retail e-commerce websites that are losing dollars over simple design flaws. This blog series shares tips on retail e-commerce usability, covering how to improve different parts of a retail e-commerce website.

Power Browsing

A customer can walk around a department store and look for a pair of shorts for several hours. Are the shorts all kept in one area? No, they are dispersed among different designers. Are all of the designers in one area? No, they are categorized by targeted age group or price range. Is everything available out on the floor? Of course not! There is a stock room full of merchandise and multiple stores across the country or around the world that might have the pair of shorts in the size and color you are looking for.

Online shopping gives retailers the advantage to let customers find what they want without leaving their chair. That is if the site’s navigation system and design doesn’t hide it from them.

Here are a few tips on how to make browsing on a retail ecommerce site useful.

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